I got the call around five pm. My last grandmother passed away at a hospital in Miami. My dad made the call. My mother, aunt and uncle haven’t called but they just lost their mom I understand. I’ve lost my only sister I’m no stranger to grief. My problem is I don’t know how to grieve.
Maybe it’s all the medications I’m on. Maybe my ex was right when they said years ago I was emotionless and hey never knew how I was feeling. Maybe it’s because I’m a Buddhist and understand the impermanence of all phenomena. I don’t know.
A part of me feels guilty for not being in tears. I can’t force them though. I love deeply and true. It’s something that I can genuinely say is real. However, I can’t help but being the sum of my experiences. Life has changed me. Life has thickened my skin. Life has punished me for feelings. Life has made my mind so armored that I disassociate as a reflex. My way of coping is to carryon as usual. To not think about it and push things to the furthest recesses of my mind. Healthy? Absolutely not. Yet I can’t help my nature it’s how I’ve survived this long.
My grandmother lived to be eighty-six. I knew her as Abuela (grandmother in Spanish) though she shared my mom’s name. She was a formidable woman. She wasn’t affectionate but she wasn’t cold. She made my mom, aunt and uncle. She used to make me Spanish porridge when I was growing up. She made the best Flan. Seriously it’s the only Flan my dad would eat. She wasn’t a fan of “lifestyle” but she never said anything bad about it to my face. She was just poised and conservative with her words and thoughts that way.
She liked plants. I loved them so we had commonalities to talk about. I spoke with her three to four weeks ago because I felt like calling her out of the blue. We spoke very briefly but it was good, cordial and kind. She was delighted to hear from me but she was also tired and she’s not a phone person so I understood. A day later I had a dream she was hospitalized and my mom was doing everything she could to go to the hospital and I begged for her to remain at home so she wouldn’t catch Covid19. Then I woke up. I spoke with my mom eight hours after that horrible dream and my grandmother had a stroke and was being sent to hospital. Prophetic? I don’t know. I’ve have always had an intuition that never was wrong.
Incidentally I remember talking to my other late grandmother for an hour out of the blue one day and then she called everyone telling her how happy she was to hear from me. I think we spoke for an hour about cats, plants and life. She was easy to talk too. She always collected dimes for my sister and i. The next day my paternal grandmother passed away in her sleep. I was closer to my dad’s mom. She always made an effort. But I saw how crushed my dad was at her funeral and knew I had to be strong. My sister was alive back then. I had to be the big brother.
Now I have no grandparents or a sister even lost a cousin. I’m not stranger to suffering in its forms or death. I remember things. Sometimes I wish i didn’t. Other times I’m grateful I remember them.
There’s no right or wrong way to grieve they say. They say their suffering is over when they pass. People say a lot of things. I always feel like I’m trying to sift through wet dirt trying to find that golden spec of truth between the grated lines.
I can’t visit. The funeral is impossible during a pandemic. Travel is impossible during a pandemic. I can’t even imagine the awkwardness of it being virtual. I want to be there. I want closure. I want everyone I love to live and not die. That’s the gist of it though. Our minds are always in a state of wanting. Always.
It hasn’t hit me yet. I’m trying to stay rational, strong, dissociate and not think about it. I know everything is transient. I’ll feel the emptiness the next time anyone is able to travel and I can see my family. It hurts me that I feel it in my bones that my mom is crying because her mom is now gone. Moms shouldn’t have to hurt or cry. No matter what people do suffering mothers doesn’t fit in my scope of acceptable things.
My grandmother loved plants, brief phone calls, and her children. She loved us all in her way. I already miss her but there’s nothing I can do or say to change things.
For once in my life I wish my medications allowed me to feel a bit more. To express sadness as easily as I do happiness. Only because I hear crying makes you feel better. I cried when I saw my sister in the casket. That’s when the unimaginable became real. I’m no stranger to grief. I’ve just got to stay strong and have faith that there’s a nugget of truth in there somewhere and the afterlife has the peace everyone sells you.
I’ve done my mantras. I miss her and wish she was still around. I wish everyone was still around.
I figured since this is my journal I’d write this because I’m not good at expressing challenging emotions verbally. Or being vulnerable. I want to remember the date. It’s significance.
I hope my grandmother is with my grandfather in a blissful paradise and happy. That’s a nugget of gold I Hope is true.
May my grandmother Rest In Peace and my prayers guide her to the haven of her choice.
Te estrano abuela ❤️🙏