Ya know what?
I'm not so sure I really have anything to say.
This is a procrastination move. Before I take any trip, I manage to find any way possible not to do what I should be--wrapping up the packing and taking my ass to bed. I'm killing time that I don't actually have to waste, and looking for ANY excuse to finally use this picture of E. Badu that's been lingering on my desktop for weeks.
I'ma freak it like this.
My grandmother turns 80 tomorrow. I have a picture of her, at 29 given to me when I turned 29, that I have an uncanny resemblance to. It literally stops people in their tracks when they enter my home. She's my FAVORITE GIRL and I treasure all traits that connect me back to her. Well...just about all.
I've got her round face and her ringed neck. When I laugh, I tilt my head the way she apparently did in her youth. I have her hips and her big legs. In certain pictures I have her smile. I have her propensity for story-telling. I exercise her desire to write.
I CANNOT WAIT until my father's family boards that cruise ship tomorrow, hearts fully stocked with love and admiration of Doris. As we look back on my grandmother's life, what 80 years has meant to her and the wisdom acquired on her journey, I must look forward at my own life. See how I just did that? I related it back to the picture that originally had no purpose. I can do it with anything.
Doris has raised 8 children. She has helped to raise, in the traditional grandmotherly way, 11 grandchildren. And she now has 3 great grands. She's outlived a husband and marriage that did what it was supposed to but could've served her better. She still smiles. A lot. Her laughter is contagious, and she still covers her mouth with both hands when she's really tickled like a shy little girl. Her mobility is challenged by the ravages of age but she still loves life and doesn't want to be pushed into a corner with old people. And so we cruise. I want to write I LOVE YOU DORIS in the sand. I want to take endless amounts of pictures. I want to scribe poems to her over dinner through joyful tears. I want to remember chicken and grits at 2 a.m. with a side of life lessons. I want to remember pizza kits in the summertime. I want to remember being called "Precious" as all of her grands and great grands have been called. It's most special to me because I was her first and I will not let the movie nor Gabby Sa--you know who I mean--ruin it for me. I want to remember her poundcakes and her advice. "If you know like I know..."
My ex fell in love with her, and called her His Cutie. She flirted noticeably, though I'm not sure if it was conscious, and reminded me that it's never too late to feel something. She's a class act who can appreciate a good dirty joke. She's very much alive. More than some of us are now.
I will NOT have 8 children. I may not ever marry and outlive a husband. Still, I hope to be able to sit at a table when I turn 80, with the people that mean the most to me, and look back over my own history with a smile. Some of you, I hope...I wish, will be there to celebrate with me. I look forward at myself, catching a flash of the woman she was staring back at me, ushering me into my future. Life is truly amazing. Living is splendid. Even when it's not.
Until next week, Lovelies...
Watch us move.