I didn’t really have a Grandma. My Mother’s Mother died before I was born, and my Father’s Mother wasn’t really interested in the position. So I never had that person in my life who thought I set the moon, who thought I did no wrong, who was my biggest cheerleader and my confidante. I will tell you that it was a hole in my soul. Everyone needs that person in their life. This world has plenty of critics, but everyone needs unconditional love.
My relationship with my mother was always difficult. She saw me more as overwhelming and annoying. Her nickname for me was “wild child.” She definitely didn’t think I set the moon, she was always finding something wrong, but to her defense she had her own struggles. As you can see there was just a big ol’ hole in my heart needing some filling.
Then one day God brought Grandma Ester into my life. She was my friend Lyz’s mother. Grandma Ester never met a stranger. She was always happy and uplifting. If you ever saw Grandma Ester at church, she was dressed to the nines with a beautiful hat and lipstick. She always had to have lipstick!
Grandma quickly became my buddy. She would always go on about how beautiful my hair was. She would encourage me with anything that I did. But most of all, she loved my children. They called her Grandma Ester. They would run to hug and kiss her, because she thought they set the moon too. She attended their weddings, and graduations. My favorite story is when Grandma told my girls, “girls you are so beautiful. You need lipstick, so I bought you lipstick.” It was bright red lipstick. My girls later put it on and sent Grandma a picture with their lipstick on. She was thrilled.
Grandma and I had lots of adventures together. We’d go to Green Thumb together, and I would lose her. Even though she had a walker she was fast! She loved Weinersnitzel. I would take her and we would have lunch or I would bring some by the house for her. She was so thrilled. Grandma loved watching sports on TV and we would even sit and watch tennis together.
I’ve never met someone with so much love. What I am describing about Grandma, hundreds of others could also share. She loved everyone well. She didn’t just compliment, she meant it. She loved big. She was always happy to see you and she loved to cook for you. Grandma taught me to make salsa but hers was always better.
The last two years have been especially difficult for me in my marriage. Grandma has faithfully prayed for me and would call me just to tell me she’s praying for me. In fact, it had been quite a while since my husband had seen Grandma. When we walked into her room last week although she couldn’t speak, you could tell she was so excited to see my husband. She fought so hard to talk but couldn’t. She then took both of our hands and put them together. She kept trying to talk. I went to her ear and whispered, “you don’t have to talk Grandma. We already know how much you love us.” Then she puckered her lips for a kiss. I went to my car and sobbed.
Grandma had a stroke earlier this year and though we have been preparing for her passing, walking in and seeing her unable to speak knocked me off my feet. I thought I was prepared, but nothing prepares you to lose your biggest cheerleader. Nothing prepares you for the huge hole it will leave. I am a better woman for being able to call Grandma Ester my Grandma. She taught me to love well and love big. Because of her there will be lipstick and hats in heaven. My only hope is that now I can pass on her legacy of love to everyone I meet. Thank you Klopman’s for sharing Grandma Ester with us.