What turned out to be a day of going back home and relaxing ended up being a day joy and heartbreak. You see, on our way coming home from our Thanksgiving in Dallas, TX I got the news I knew would one day come. My grandmother, Mary Holmes, was about to pass away. You know you think you have prepared yourself for these moments, but when they happen you find your not as well prepared as you thought. What makes it so crazy is that I spoke with my Grandmother on Thanksgiving morning and something inside me knew that things weren’t right.
We actually began our drive back to Mobile, AL a little late. We planned to leave at about 4am, but we didn’t get on the road until 5am. Thanks to my son, Little Ernest, neither of us got a lot of sleep either. As soon as we got to the hotel room last night he woke up and stayed up all night long talking to us constantly in our sleep. LOL. He was so excited about returning home he couldn’t sleep at all.
The ride home seemed a lot longer that getting to Dallas, TX. I think it was mostly due to the fact that we made more stops. We stopped at WalMart, a few gas stations to fill-up as well as wake up, and had a very uneventful breakfast in Bossier, LA called Mobe’s Restaurant. We were about 2 hours away from Mobile, AL when I got the text from my Aunt Ruby that I need to call my cousin Shonny. The minute I saw that text I new exactly what it meant and my heart dropped. Once I called her my suspicions had been confirmed. She had not passed away yet at this time, but I was told that it was any time now. That she would not make it before the day was over. Of course I had to make the heartbreaking calls to family including my sister, Gabriel, who now lives in Chicago, IL. From that moment on I found it hard to think all the way home.
Once we got here, though, my brain took a small break spending time with my In-Laws. Ernest’s nephew James was in town with his wife and two adorable little girls. We had to make sure that we saw them before the left for Omaha, Nebraska. It was nice being with everyone. Even the occasional hollering of the children. But after spending a few hours there it was time for everyone to go their separate ways. For me it was calling more family members, looking into what needs to be done for the funeral, and trying hard not to have a nervous break down.
My grandmother was a wonderful woman. Many thought of her as a bit harsh. Even my own mother. But I always looked at her as a very strong and determined woman. She knew what she wanted and how to get it. She also was a very talented woman. I think that is where I got my love for drawing from. I remember growing up and watching my grandmother paint. Her favorite thing was to paint still life and landscapes. She use to do it with such little effort. I even remember one early morning her showing me how to properly draw a tree, mountains, and a house. I think I was about in 4th or 5th grade then. We had just moved back to Denver, CO from Dayton, OH. She was amazing. Feisty little thing til the very end of her life. I remember when my mother passed away how I was so concerned about her, but she made sure she was there for me. It was the day she told me how proud of me she was. It was also the first day I could ever remember her saying she loved me. She wasn’t one to always express her feelings, but from that day on she always made sure to told me that. If anything at all makes me sad it’s that I wasn’t there for her in the end. Part of my quilt of being so far away from her. I love my grandmother so very much and I will miss her deeply. She was in her early 90s so I know she lived a long life. She survived the death of her husband, her two daughters, her two sisters (one who just passed a few months ago), wars, poverty, and so much more. I should be celebrating her next life of peace. She is no longer suffering. She is in heaven now with those who have gone on before her. But you know it doesn’t ease the pain I feel. This will be very hard for me, but I do know I have the Lord and my family on my side. That for sure means everything during this time. This is must honestly say is what makes me truly thankful.