I am now down to one remaining biological grandparent. My paternal grandmother, Violet, passed away over the weekend shortly after her 89th birthday. She is survived by her 91 year old husband, my grandpa, Burt. For how long, I don’t know. My mom’s parents passed about a year apart, a few years ago. And I still miss them.
In my mom’s family, when my grandparents passed the family started to unravel. I wouldn’t say it’s fallen apart, but it’s not what it used to be. We used to all get together every Christmas at my grandparents place to eat, exchange gifts and play games. There hasn’t been a full family Christmas since they passed. There are occasional family reunions, but they aren’t as well attended, and just really aren’t the same. This makes me sad.
I’m afraid the same is going to happen with my dad’s family, and based on conversations I had this past Christmas, I’m not the only one. Because my relationship with my dad (biological father) was strained after my parent’s divorce, I never spent as much time with his family as with my mom’s or step dad’s. Often I’d only see them at Christmas. There are first cousins on that side that I couldn’t name (in my defense, there are 25 of them in total!) and that’s not even getting into my cousin’s kids. I haven’t spent enough time with these people as it is, and I’d hate to see it reduced even more.
But there will be time enough to worry about that. For now it’s time to mourn, commiserate and remember. Grandma Vi lived a long and happy life and had a big, loving family. She will be missed, but her memory lives on in all of us. RIP, Grandma!