I saw the pale lifeless husk of her body and completely broken down. I didn’t notice any details, just what was left of my grandmother, the woman who helped raise me, the woman who survived Japanese occupation, a World War, a Civil War and even her own offspring.
It wasn’t after I composed myself and made phone calls to the rest of the family that I went back in for a closer look. She had a hint of a smile, a smile that showed she was happy to be rid of this avatar, that her pain would be gone, that she was headed to her god. Or maybe it was a mischievous smile of a woman who decided to die at 12:10 am. Nevertheless, despite the broken down body that failed her being right there, with that smirk she seemed at peace just lying there.
My mom was the last person in our family to see her alive, and I am so far the only person in the family to see her dead. Aside from that initial burst of tears, I’ve been calm. I got home from the nursing home at around 2:30 and couldn’t fall asleep until 4. Unlike the dreams I had the other night that were filled with The Grandmother, last night was peaceful. I slept for a solid five hours until more rounds of phone calls and text messages this morning.
To be honest, I don’t know what I’m feeling right now. Sure there is some sadness, but I’m feeling more empty than anything else I think. I guess this is why I feel compelled to write, to sort of deal with all of this shit. Everyone else in the family is holding up well, so I guess that’s minor miracle.
Now on to plan the funeral (which, thankfully, I am not doing.)