My grandmother has spent the last eleven years with God. And the last two with Van Johnson. And the last eighteen months with Grandpa. I think Van Johnson wins. We spent the last eleven years growing up without her (I'm twice as old as I was when she died, and that's really weird), but you know, there's jewelry. So that's good.
I feel kind of badly sometimes because I talk about about Grandpa a lot. I miss him during random parts of the day, I can still hear his voice (although I did drop my phone the first time I called his house after he died and the answering machine picked up), I really wish I could talk to him about some of this school stuff, and well, I blog about it. A lot. Too much to link to, in fact.
(Pretty much check out any post from the end of July 2008 through...oh...last week sometime.)
I feel like I'm cheating Grandma out of some quality grieving. Which is stupid, because obviously I miss her just as much.
My middle name is "Mary Elizabeth," after her. For those of you who actually know my entire name, please note that it is FREAKING LONG. When I was applying to college, the school I ended up choosing required my entire name. So now whenever I show up on a roster, or get a letter, or even an e-mail, it shows up as "Kathleen Mary Elizabeth *Redacted Because I Don't Need Any Help Finding Crazy People*". Just last week I sent an e-mail and realized how long and stupid that looked. I was about to log onto PAWS to apply to change my name to Kathleen M *Redacted Because I Don't Need Any Help Finding Crazy People*, thus saving the university THOUSANDS in ink costs over the next semester. But then I stopped and thought, well, that's kind of horrible. I love my middle name, even though it means my signature can never fit on a traditional line. I love that my mom felt like she wanted to name me after her mom. And I love that it shows up.
(Confirmation name: Elizabeth. There is a point.)
Whenever I think about marriage, I think about my grandmother. She and my grandfather probably didn't have a grand, passion-filled marriage (and if they did, I don't want to hear about it), but he cared for her for ten years, even after she stopped knowing who he was. (She still thought he was cute, though. It was pretty adorable.) I don't know that I'll ever find what they had, but at least I know what I'm looking for.
So Grandma, I love you and I miss you. And I forgive you for wallpapering the ceiling in the bathroom. Kind of.