20 May 2016

Remembering my maternal grandmother

Today is one of "those days". It is my parent's anniversary. They were married in 1967. When I was in sixth grade, I made my Confirmation. I was Roman Catholic at the time. My sponsor was my Aunt Neva (my mom's sister-in-law). When I was in eight grade, my dog died. Troubles had been with the family longer than me. She was a great dog. It is also the day my maternal grandmother passed away today.

I remember waking up that morning feeling a heaviness in my chest and feeling very sad. I managed to roll over and go back to sleep but then a few hours later, I heard the phone ring. Daddy came in my room (I was home from college) and asked if I was awake. I remember telling him Mums had passed and about what time she had passed.

Mary Rose (Welsh) Still
d. 20 May 1989
May Her Memory Be Eternal

That day is a bit of a blur but some random things stand out. For instance, my grandparents had a party-line. In all the years they lived there, none of us could ever recall the other party talking much. That day, she would not get off the phone! I remember finally my uncle breaking in to say we had a death in the family and needed to make some phone calls. My grandfather lived there for awhile afterwards and we never heard the other party again!

My grandmother was very Irish and VERY proud of it. All four of her grandparents are our immigrant ancestors. Every St Patrick's Day was like celebrated with more fanfare than Easter and Christmas combined! She made these nasty grasshoppers which of course all us kids would readily accept since it was the only time she ever suggested we share a drink with everyone. Nasty!

She never learned how to drive but oh man could she get around. We lived a good 25 miles away and it really was not a surprise to walk in after school and see that little blue overnight bag of hers sitting in the kitchen.

The kitchen ... my Dad used to cook on the grill all the time. One day - it was raining - he made a comment about being able to cook anything on the grill. So there's my 5' even grandmother out holding an umbrella over my 6'2" father while he cooked her an EGG on the grill!

I have so many wonderful memories of her. Please feel free to share YOUR memories of your grandmother ... or if you knew mine, of mine!

© Jeanne Ruczhak-Eckman, 2016

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