we’ve been here in los angeles now for four days. four days that have sped forward at a pace faster than i would like. note to self: asking for a crib at a hotel is not a scary proposition and is a complete lifesaver. i can’t even begin to imagine what navigating the airport and flight would have been like if we had brought along the pack-n-play as originally planned.
we’ve spent most of our days with my grandmother. seeing her with lil miss has been such a blessing. she’s over the moon with her and the joy with which she looks on this tiny person – well, it’s deeply moving. already, lil miss has been regaled with stories of her mother’s misadventures. (what? you were a complete angel! yeah – i know. strange, huh? um, right.)
grandmother is now 90 and showing it. she’s physically frail, prone to the wibble wobbles. her spirit and mind, though, are very much still acute. what a force she must have been in her prime!
because we were coming, she spent time and energy, energy that she doesn’t have, preparing us food. and this food was labor intensive for the healthy, let alone the frail. she fretted about how she can’t prepare food the way she used to, not able to treat us the way she would like. and all i wanted to do is tell her to stop, that it’s ok, it’s her we came for, not the food. but to say that is, really, to say don’t love us in the way you do. so, we sat back and watched and ate every last bite with appreciation.
then we made it to the dress shop to buy lil miss a traditional dress for her one year birthday. they came all the way from the east coast to visit me, their poor grandmother. give me a discount. see, they came from such a distance to visit me, their lonely grandmother. give me a discount. they wanted to buy a dress here for their daughter. give me a discount. and that purse? why don’t you give it to me for free? they came ALL the way here to come visit and buy a dress. what? why is there a $2.55 extra? let’s make it a round number and just drop the $2.55 extraneous amount. we ended up with the dress on sale, a free accompanying purse, and a round number.
back at the apartment, grandma tried to teach me about cooking, cooking for us and cooking for the baby. i wish she had a better recipient for these lessons – i’m rather bad in the kitchen without a recipe book. she detailed instructions for me – we’ll see how much i remember.
she went on about how she wishes that she could come back with us, to take care of lil miss. and that inevitably led to conversations about my mother. how sad she is that i don’t have my mother here with me, especially in my newfound motherhood, how terrific my mother would have been to our daughter, how loving she would have been. nothing she said isn’t something i feel already tenfold – at least – constantly.
but who am i to question God’s decision to take my mother away so young?
in the meantime, i feel blessed that i could sit there, with my mother’s mother. the woman who had such a large part in shaping my mother to be the magnificent mother that she was. and i can only think and pray that i’d be so blessed to be shaped the same way.