Today my grandma would have celebrated her 80th birthday. Ever since she passed in March of this year I’ve been thinking about milestones. The first wedding anniversary my Grandpa would spend alone in over 60 years. The first time I would not get to tell her Happy Birthday. Thanksgiving. Christmas.
Those thoughts can be completely overwhelming if I let them take hold. I can’t change the past. If I could, I don’t know that I would want to. In her final weeks Grandma was so weak, in so much pain. Even before that time she was filled with worry and doubt, Alzheimer’s stealing the peace she usually had.
So, if I can’t go back, I must go forward. Alone. Or at least lonelier.
And then there’s the fear. The undercurrent to thinking about her disease is the fear my mom will get it. I will get it. That my future is a journey through the mist that obscures all things.
Last night I went out to the cemetery but this time I didn’t linger too much. To some degree I accept that pain of losing her, while it may diminish in time, is permanent. Death is permanent. And it sucks.
This was Mom, Grandma and myself celebrating her 79th birthday last year.