Friday, January 10, 2014

Why Does it Still Hurt So Much?

Many people don't know this but I lost my grandmother that I called Nanny in 2009. She passed away due to stage four lung cancer. It's been five years since her passing and yet I still can't seem to stop grieving her.

My Nanny...was a wonderful glorious woman. Plump and soft as a pillow and a woman with a golden heart. My Nanny had a lot of grandchildren and I was her second granddaughter. She was a hell of a cook and loved to show it; making fried catfish, fries and salad every Friday. She loved her Lord, she loved the little things in life, like rainstorms and bubbles and fireworks and she loved her husband, her children, her grandchildren and her great grandchildren. She always made sure we ate; we were never hungry in her care. Like I said, a wonderful woman.

I grew up going to her house and spending weekends or weeks with her and my Pap Paw and every time I did, I was happy. Genuinely happy. I didn't have to worry about her telling about my weight or about my grades or anything negative. All she had for me was love and I loved her for it. I never could think of life without my Nanny in it.

But God had other plans for her. I remember I had this eerie nightmare where I was told by somebody that my grandmother had passed away. I woke up crying like I always did with nightmares like that one, and then went about my day. But then my uncle, Louis asked me if I had seen my Nanny. Thinking that he meant if I had went to visit her lately, I said no and thought nothing else of it. Then when I got to church that day, my dad told me that she was in the hospital getting a biopsy of her lung. I knew things would only go downhill from that point on.

It did...

That's when we found out that she had been wrongly diagnosed for years and years. Doctors thought that she had bronchitis, but by the time she was diagnosed the right way, the cancer was too far advanced. They said that she would live six months without chemo and nine with. Either way I was going to lose her. My family and I just tried to prepare our minds for that.

One thing was for sure-

She was STRONG through it, going through chemo and walking around her house with an oxygen tank. She even found enough strength to take care of my aunt's five young children. That was an amazing feat. She could have been resting and enjoying life but she found it in her heart to do this.

I remember the day that she left us. We were told she only had hours to live and all of the family came to see her. I couldn't even recognize my Nanny or whoever that was laying in her bed struggling to breath and barely coherent. She only responded to certain people. I asked my aunt if she could hear me and was told that she could hear but probably wouldn't speak. I told her "Hey, Nanny. I'm here and I love you." She looked over at me and after a few breaths said, "I love you too, baby." I was so happy that she knew me enough to say it back; it made me feel like I had impacted her life so much that she even remembered my voice.

She passed that night and everything changed. It was kind of like that movie Soul Food, where the grandmother passed on and the whole family fell apart. She was the glue. Nanny was the glue of our family. Without her, we pretty much were lost. There was no Fish Fridays any more, no get togethers with the family...nothing. My Pap Paw even remarried. The change hurts me the most to know that I can't go in there and see anything that reminds me of my Nanny because his new wife changed up everything.

Now things are to the point where I will just cry out of nowhere, thinking about her. I get anxious at home thinking that people are going to get me or my family-because I don't want to lose another family member I love. It confuses me how bad I cry for her because in the past I have cried like this, thinking that I was finally grieving her the way I needed to. So my question to all of you that have lost somebody is...

When? When will it stop hurting?

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