Losing my grandma started 5 years before her death this February. After my grandpa passed, my mom noticed that things were changing with my grandma. At first, it looked liked age, but my mom quickly realized that it was something more. It was Alzheimers. In those few years, she declined to the point when she had no idea who I was, or even that I was her granddaughter. Everything that I knew and loved about her was gone. Her passing was a relief, but even as everyone says that I should remember who she was before, it’s hard to do. Sure, I have memories from childhood that I can recall, but when I think of her, I don’t think of the vibrant person she was, rather the frail and scared woman she had become. But then something amazing happened. My mom found a journal while going through her things. It’s all written to me, starting on the day my parents told her that they were expecting. It’s mostly written before I was born, but there are scattered entries up to my 5th birthday. The first time I opened it, I started crying. I could hear her voice coming from her writing.
The stories she tells are a combination of the new and the old. Some supplement pictures or stories that I know, some are totally new. I see myself in her. I understand where I got my love of flowers and gardening, and my compassion for animals. She spends pages going on about the squirrel that moved into her backyard, how much joy she brought, and how my grandma used to wake her up every morning with a cheerful “hello”. These stories are a miracle for me. They’ve brought back who she was, before the Alzheimers, before the sadness and fear. The journal gave me back my grandma, one of the most special and important people in my life. I’m slowly trekking through the stories. I don’t want to read too much at once because I don’t want it to end. But now I know that I’ll always have this piece of her, her voice to comfort me.
The first page, a description of how my parents broke the news of my impending arrival.
Talking about a trip that my parents and grandparents took and explaining how I will grow up as someone who loves and appreciates animals.
It’s a Small World 50th Anniversary
New York’s World Fair 1964 by Loren Javier
Disneyland, CA by Sam Howzit
Disney World, FL by Jeff Bergman
Tokyo Disneyland by jdhilger
Disneyland Paris by ThatDisneyLover
Hong Kong Disneyland by kin2son