My grandma died today, at the very ripe old age of 98. And in spite of her longevity, for most of my life, I thought of her as being much younger. Not mistakenly so, because I always knew how old she really was. But just that her spirit was always youthful. She was intelligent, busy, gregarious. And she was actually about 20 years younger than my other grandma, and she had a son, my uncle Marty, the same age as me. (There's a trippy notion for you. Mother and daughter both pregnant at the same time! That's gotta be weird!)
Anyway, between my 2 grandmas, as a kid, I always felt closer to my other grandma (my dad's mom. We called her Granny) Maybe there was some subliminal level of discord between my mom and her mom, and there was a ripple effect. Maybe she was just busy raising her own kid while I was a kid. I don't know. I am touched by her passing, but not with grief. Maybe with nostalgia. For the loss of time, and not being mindful that family connections can be forged, or forfeited, and it was up to me to choose which way I wanted that to go.
Here is one of the last photos I have of her, from a few months ago. With my mom on the left.
And here is one of my favorite photos with her and Grandpa, from 1972.
We were celebrating my 16th birthday. Grandma's age: 55. I am currently 59. That is mind blowing for me. To be, in this instant, older than she was at that instant. (Also, look at my hair! That will never happen again!)