My grandma Lillian passed away October 29th... she lived a good long life and went peacefully as she was on comfort care at the end.
My brother Nathan and I flew out to Chicago with my dad to go say goodbye. Since my grandma was Catholic, they had a family viewing, a public viewing, and a full funeral mass before entombing her in a mausoleum. Some of it was surreal... I shook hands with about 150 strangers who told me how sorry they were, all while my grandma laid in a casket looking like she was about to get up and start talking to us. It was so weird.
In the end, though, I feel like I had ample time to say goodbye. My grandma never once forgot to send me (and James) a card for every occasion, made by her on her computer. She also sent me family recipes and gave me a whole box of them, which I treasure to this day. It was hard to see her, but know she was gone... some people you think will just be around forever, and it's a shock when you realize that's just not true.
The upside to the trip was that it was the first time ALL of the cousins on that side were together. We all live so far apart that it had never happened before. So we of course had to take some pictures...
Here is a pic of me with all my cousins
And me with my grandpa (93 years young)
And here is everyone!
It was SO hard being away from James for the first time and for such a long time. I held my cousin's daughter Nikola (who is one month younger than James) to keep myself from going through toddler withdrawls. But I don't regret going, I am so grateful for the time I got to spend with my family, especially my grandpa who I hadn't seen in years. A big thanks to my husband and mother in law for babysitting and allowing the trip to happen, and to my dad for taking me.
Miss you grandma. <3