The last time I saw my brother and his fiancé was back in October. Brian and Holly just happened to be in Florida from North Carolina the same time my Grandma Beaber passed away unexpectedly. It was a miserable experience. I had to scramble to get time off of work to be in South Florida with my parents. My brother and Holly tried to figure out how to make it a few more days in Florida and away from their jobs in another state. The whole clan ended up in Fort Myers for nearly a week. One of the highlights of our visit to South Florida was having dinner with Grandma Normie.
Grandma Normie had never been very emotionally close to us, whether by chance or by choice. It doesn’t matter, though. She made the effort back in October and it worked. I drove home after the funeral and, during the 6-hour trip, couldn’t help but laugh at some of the snarky comments Grandma Normie had made. She was full of spunk, sarcasm, and a sharp wit. The coolest story was the one she told us about being born before Thanksgiving was even a holiday. Grandma Normie turned 92 in November. Wow.
But, like I said, Brian and Holly had come back into town last night. They stayed overnight and I woke up to raucous laughter coming from the living room. I like to stay in my bed for a while, to wake up and convince myself that it’s totally worth getting out of bed even though I’m all snuggly and cozy in my warm, comfy bed and the wind outside makes it a balmy 35 degrees. But all that laughter. I was missing out on something. I hate being left out. I got out of bed.
Mom: “Grandma Normie died this morning.”
Me: (looking at Brian and Holly) “You shouldn’t be allowed to visit anymore.”
The family wasn’t laughing because Grandma died. They were laughing about all the stuff she did before she died. Grandma definitely flew with a special flock, if you catch my drift. Sometimes she was the only one in the flock. I started to participate in the “Remember when…” round table and before you could say, “she was 92 years old, for chrissakes!!”, the focus was back on Brian and Holly again.
Nick: (looking at Brian and Holly) “You should probably give us all more advanced notice from now on when you plan on visiting.”
Dad: “Should I get a physical before you show up next time?”
Me: “It’s a good thing I have a life insurance policy in place now.”
Grandma would have had a delightful quip of her own to add to this morning’s breakfast conversation. Spunk. Sarcasm. Wit. That’s what we Normans are made of.