My sweet Grandma has been on a little bit of a roller coaster since Tuesday night. We got the call this morning that she may be at the beginning of the end with congestive heart failure occurring. A couple of hours later the phrase "she may not make it through the night" came into play. Why is it only the night-we never say they may not make it through the day...anyway...
She's been talking to us, she knows who she's talking to and she's even bringing family colloquialisms into her conversations. Is there a better name for those? Those little sayings only a family understands. She wants her glasses on so she can see all of us. After I left this evening, I heard she and her daughters were singing hymns (at least I know she was singing in her heart even if she didn't have the breath to sing).
Earlier today I was thinking about my grandparents. Although they're all very different, my grandparents have left neat legacies for us.
My mom's dad died first, when I was in Jr. High. He lived out in the country in a house that was built into the side of a hill. His screened in porch was on the outside, but the further you walked on the cement floors, the further you walked into a hillside. That porch was the place to be for cards and home made hand cranked ice cream! The pond was always stocked with fish we got to feed with bread crumbs. Family reunions were a blast-camping out in the tents by the pond or sleeping on a cot next to snoring Uncle Bob! Unique, outdoor living was the legacy he left.
My Grandpa died two years ago this Fall. His wife is the one in the hospital now and we live in their home. He had business cards made with the Gospel on them! He was known for whistling those same hymns his daughters were singing tonight. He could recite poetry that has become family favorites (The Raggedy Man, anyone?). He was a craftsman but sometimes didn't think a project all the way through-like when he built the bathroom cabinets before he considered how much room the toilet would need. Anyone who's used our bathroom and had to squeeze their knees into the small space knows what I mean! He bought lots of items on sale, just because they were on sale-prune juice on sale! Yeah Buddy! He'd also sneak out and buy hamburgers when he was supposed to be on a diet.
My Grandma, who everyone has called "Miss Clara" today, is the prayer warrior of the family. I know her prayers ushered me into the Kingdom. She's been active in every way until Saturday. She knows all about politics, she's an avid reader, and she even volunteered at the Pregnancy Resource Center until about 10 years ago She taught Sunday School to Noah, I'm sure-well, not Noah but almost every adult in town! She shared the bounty of her garden and she loved a man who struggled with dementia till death they departed.
My mother's mom is still alive and living on her own in Oklahoma City. She narrowly escaped the Federal Building Bombing in OKC, she water skied until recently but can still tent camp and hold her own out on the lake. She raised a big family alone (she & my grandfather divorced) in the big city and is still very independent.
Not only do I want to pick up traits from each of these people in my life, I want to give a great legacy as well. When there's so many ways to entertain the grand kids (cartoons, the web, game stations, movies...) it takes extra effort to sow into their lives. My cousins would all agree that my grandparents sowed into us richly. I want to be that way with the future generations!