|My Memere, 3 years ago|
at age 99
It's been a very eventful few weeks. We had to deal with Jim's most recent health issues, and the night before Thanksgiving, my 102 year old grandma passed away after many years of living with Alzheimer's. Her passing was a blessing, as she had absolutely almost no quality of life whatsoever, and she had not known who we were for years. We expected it, we even prayed for it, and yet, when she did pass, I was surprised by how it affected me. I will never, ever be able to talk about my Memere in the present tense again. It also saddened me when I realized I would not need to buy her a Christmas present this year. Or ever again.
There is nothing that annoys me more than when someone passes, and everybody talks about them like they were a perfect saint. It just seems so . . . hollow and fake. My Memere wasn't perfect (who is?), and we had our issues, but I still have many wonderful memories of her from when I was a little child. As someone who struggles terribly with perfectionism, it is hard for me to deal with both sides of people (myself included). I tend to think of people as all wonderful, or if I don't see them that way, it is very hard for me to deal with them at all. There is no question that polarized thinking follows me everywhere. I'm learning to accept all sides of people, both good and bad, (again, myself included). If I'm hurt by someone or don't agree with what someone did, I am trying extremely hard to forgive and move on, even if they never realize or acknowledge the wrongdoing. It is not easy. It doesn't mean that I'm ignoring wrongdoing, or not dealing with it at the time. But, I'm sure you understand what I mean, when I say there are times you must forgive and move on. I've chosen to focus now on the positives of my relationship with my grandma, because there absolutely were a lot of positives. I think she did the best she could for her family.
I'm not exactly an angel either. I let my OCD get in the way of being there for her in the last several years. I really hate that about myself. I thought I would be consumed with guilt at her passing because of that. Strangely enough, I'm not. Oh, don't get me wrong, I'm not excusing myself. I guess I'm just trying to apply the same healthier thought patterns to myself. I can't change my past behavior anymore than I can change someone else's. So, what I'm left with, is the need for forgiveness and acceptance once again. Only this time, it's towards myself. I've asked my Lord for forgiveness. Now, I need to follow His lead.
Christmas will be bittersweet for my family this year, as I'm sure it will be for many others. God bless you if you are dealing with loss, and all that goes with it, right now. I pray that He comforts you with His love, His peace, and wonderful memories of your loved one.
The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit. Psalm 34:18 ESV