I’ve thought about it all day today. I’m supposed to go down to Charlottesville to see my grandmother for the last time- and I’m not gonna do it.
It just didn’t make any sense to me. I don’t want to ruin her for myself. She can always be the batshit lady I remember from the 4th of July fireworks, not the catatonic lump in palliative care nobody else knows, either. I’m going for my sister and my mother(my mother’s falling apart), but I just don’t need to go in for me.
The downer about not remembering the first decade of your life is you don’t remember things you should. Supposedly my grandmother lived with me for three months straight when I couldn’t go back to 1st grade after chemo, because my immune system was so weak. I have pictures of her and I when she took me across the country to the Grand Canyon when I was 9, but I don’t remember that either. I just know it happened. She probably doesn’t remember it either.
But the last time I saw her- man, was she wicked. She was angry and snarky and bitchy for an hour or upset and crying the next. We resorted to slipping her my Valium on the last couple days. Mostly we just kept her drunk. But I do remember she saw I had this one purple dress on, and she just loved it for some reason and kept talking about it and talking about it endlessly. By the end of the day I ended up giving it to her (I mean, I knew I’d get it back- I have it now), and I just couldn’t stand how happy it made her. It was so stupid. And she was so funny, she said the funniest things. She picked on everyone. She never liked my sense of humor but she did then. We came home to my aunt’s farm then, and she had my drive her to the store (my grandma hasn’t driven in three years), and she went right up to a cashier and asked him if he was free this Friday night. Yep. Not even joking.
You know, I don’t care if she never remembers that. Or if she was ever aware of doing any of it. It’s a pretty good place to leave off.
That photo is probably the last one taken of us this past July 4th.