My Family

My Family

Thursday, August 27, 2009

This is a sad day for me and my family. My grandmother just died. Last night, my mom called and told me that my grandma had either had a massive stroke or that she had fallen and hit her head - whatever happened, she was at the hospital and was unconscious. They did some tests and discovered huge amounts of blood around her brain. By the time a surgeon looked at the tests, he said her brain was damaged badly. He could have done surgery (drill hole in head and drain blood), but that she would still have brain damage and probably wouldn't survive the surgery. My mom left on a flight to Arizona this morning - just wanting to say goodbye before giving the go-ahead to take Grandma off of life support. She was a 1/2 hour too late. Grandma died before she got there. I'm so sad for my mom.

I couldn't sleep last night, worrying about Grandma and Mom. How do you say goodbye to your mom? I can't even imagine it. After a lifetime of loving her, relying on her - where do you get the strength to let her go? My heart is breaking for my mom. I'm feeling awful, but thought I'd write a post of my grandma so that I'd feel better.

My grandma met my grandpa during World War II. She worked in a parachute factory and he was a bomber pilot. My grandma would bring parachute fabric home to her mom and they'd make quilts. My mom still has one of those quilts! After the war, when they were married, Grandma moved with Grandpa to Utah (from Virginia). Grandpa fixed airplanes at Hill Airforce Base. They lived in this cute little house in Bountiful. I remember visiting them there. Grandpa had this cool pool table in the basement. There was a hill in the backyard that we used to roll down. One time, when Grandma Evans was babysitting me, I left the house and walked all the way to the little corner store by myself (I was 3!). I stole a candybar, and Grandma found me a while later, on the porch, eating this candybar. She asked where I got it, and when she found out what I did, she marched me right back to that store and made me tell the manager. I don't really remember any of this, but it's one of those great stories everyone tells through the years. I remember a few of the rooms in Grandma's house - the kitchen had white cabinets and kind of a fluorescent light - I love the way the lights played on everything in the kitchen - making it all look so neat. I remember sitting at the kitchen table (the same table my mom would ride around on her trike) and Grandma teaching me how to write cursive - and not letting me stop practicing until all of my letters slanted the right way. I owe my beautiful handwriting to my Grandma! I remember Grandma and Grandpa's bedroom. I have flashes of memories - like photographs - of things on the top of their dresser. What I remember most was that some of those things were handmade by their kids (my mom and my uncle) and they still had a place of honor in the master bedroom. I remember the beautiful white mantel around the fireplace, and that beautiful clock on the mantle that went round and round. We used to go every Christmas eve to visit Grandma and Grandpa. One of the most vivid childhood memories I have is riding back home from Grandma's - around the point of the mountain in Bountiful - lying on the backseat of the car and watching the lights travel across the inside of the car as I fell asleep. I remember watching the super bowl with Grandpa and him being so mad that my team won and his didn't. He made me turn the tv off right when the fans flooded the field (my favorite moment of the game). When I would stand in front of the tv, he used to say "You make a better door than a window!" Haha! Grandma would say, "Oh, Tom!". Grandma was a gifted seamstress and a great cook. She grew up on a dairy farm and knew how to work! Grandma knew how to quilt as well. She helped make many of the quilts that I got for my wedding. I remember fleeing to stay with my grandma and grandpa when my boyfriend broke my heart. They didn't say anything - no preaching, no opinions - just let me stay there and heal.

Grandma was so proud of all of her grandkids and great-grandkids. She would always ask me to give the kids and Rick and kiss for her and tell them how much she loved them. I remember visiting Grandma and Grandpa Evans when Rick graduated with his bachelor's degree - Grandpa let us drive around in his old truck and Grandma would ask Rick over and over if he wanted something else to eat! Grandma took care of Grandpa through his fight with Lymphoma cancer. I remember visiting during that time and was touched by the love and care she showed him. I took my family to visit and we all stayed in Grandma's trailer. We had a great time. She's been slowing down a lot the past few years. She's had heart problems and back problems. My sister, Kris, and I went a few years ago and stayed with her for a week and took care of her. Then, a few months ago, we again went down and stayed for a week. I could tell she was much weaker. She has fallen a few times and I'm always worried about her walking around by herself. This past year, during my fight with breast cancer, my grandma has called at least 2-3 a week. She had helped me so much. I've gotten so used to her phone calls, I will have a hard time not hearing her voice again.

I love my grandparents. I know that Grandpa was just waiting in the spirit world for Grandma to hurry up and get there. They've been apart for so many years. I'm so happy for her - she is basking in his love and I can just see the gathering that is happening right now - she is in the arms of not only Grandpa, but her parents and siblings as well. What a wonderful time she must be having. I love you, Grandma!

Here are just some of my favorite pictures:

Cute Irene showing those gorgeous legs! No wonder my grandpa fell head over heels!

Two of my all time favorite pictures of my grandparents.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Our thoughts are with you! So sorry to hear about your loss! It is so nice to have the gospel to keep us looking forward to the greater picture! :) Great pictures!

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