Music's Like a Snuggie for Your Soul


Sunday, February 11, 2018


Gram age 80 Hiawatha Trail Idaho

Oh Gram.

How lucky for us to have spent such a sweet and relaxing Thanksgiving with you, just the four of us (mom, little sister and me). I still can't believe we ever relented in our objections to let you cook a goddam turkey, not to mention your taking charge of biscuits, gravy and mashed potatoes. It was amazing as always.

Watching Lion with you the next day, bundled in two adjacent mounds of blankets in your living room, tears creeping out and plunging down the spillways of our cheeks while the rest of the family made the seasonal retail bender, is a memory I'll always treasure. How grateful to you for enduring more of my inquiries about your trying childhood, and filling in random gaps of family history. I'm so glad to have asked when I did.

I should have known. When we got the text you'd broken your fetching femur, we should've raced up there right away. It seemed sensible postponing the voyage over winter roads until the light of morning. But the call came. (Of course it did.) We were too late. 

My gram was spunky up until the end. She didn't languish. She would've hated that. She went out with Dilaudid on the hour. She was still living independently in her own home until the last day of her life, which, with any luck, was under a pleasant blanket of sedation.

My Gram was ornery, but mellowed with age (as with our mother). Her Fundamentalist Christian values and Fox News watching tendencies had toned down in recent years. She changed her own oil and executed basic repairs and matters of vehicular and home maintenance until she was 80. She was fastidiously clean to an obsessive-compulsive, even antiseptic extent, yet she took a loving to Olive, and often invited her beyond the barricaded section of linoleum we'd dutifully ensconced her in during our visits.

Jen and me pall-bearing with all our handsome cousins. I'm in the rear. Photo and caption credit to our aunt Tami

For all her fundamentalism, my gram was hep. She texted, she facebooked, she even Instagram'ed, i'm sure chiefly in to connect with us. Did I? Enough? Enough that my gram felt more loved than lonely? Probably not. I didn't visit or call on a sufficient basis. More shame I will carry. 

Is she watching me now, you think? Sipping hot tea up in the clouds and shaking her head as she looks down on my unkempt house, the paw prints, the dust and the piles. If she's thinking I'm lazy, she's right. I'm totally meh. Resigned. And shame on me. How acutely aware I am of the precious, ephemeral nature of all of this. How any sense and every second of fucking normalcy and every bit of fresh air and iota of autonomy is not to be taken for granted. Yet, here i am, just meh. Looking like it might take me all year to recover from one little swatch of last summer (physically, emotionally, financially...). 

Anyhow, this is really belated. My Gram died before Christmas. I have loads to post, but my grandma's death, and general insecurities at my given stage in life have left me somewhat deflated. I'm always thinking about blogging. I think of you all often. Please forgive my heaps of outstanding comments. I'm always reading, but sometimes I'm a little late in my catching up. No need to drop any sorries or sentiments here, just had to acknowledge the passing of a sweet soul, you know? 

I still suck at life, at least the requisite adulting aspects. Looking forward to updating some more, but at this rate, no one be doin any breath holding in the meantime, okay? I'm a shit friend. I regret it. I intend to do better, always, and then i don't. The scritching and rancor of cognitive dissonance. Oy vey. 

Thank you for being here despite my sporadic correspondence. 

Bowing to you in great deference and love. 

Warm regards from Idaho,



  1. You know, my sweet, just a few hours ago (and I swear this is true), I thought, "I am going to write that woman and see what's up."
    So. And there you are.
    Can I just say that if one of my grands wrote as beautifully and honestly about me when I died as you did about your gram, I would be so happy?
    Damn. I'm sorry she's not with you any more but I sure am glad she got to go in the way she did. Amazing. And you know what? I bet she was completely happy with the love you gave her, in all ways. Thrilled, in fact. I would be.
    So. Be gentle to your soul and realize that you not only were loved, you loved.
    What fabulous pictures. Life! And death...
    This is what it is to be human.
    Loving you from afar...Mary

  2. Gram, lucky gram. She lived and died on her terms. She knows and loves you exactly as you are. Youngers don't ask elders about their lives, often until it is too late. You did some of that in time, so yay to you. She understands that youngers don't call or write and believe me, it is ok. She is in the place where clean and dirty don't matter, it is light and lovely and loving. You are held in my heart whether you blog or not.

  3. Thank you for telling us in such beautiful words about your wonderful Gram. Every time you remember her she will be right there with you.

  4. Like Ms. Moon, I was strangely thinking of you today and before I opened and read your post, I thought my comment would be more like, "WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN, GIRL?" But here you are, and I am so sorry that you lost your grandmother. Your eulogy here for her was so beautiful and warm. Like you. Beautiful and warm.

  5. You are held in my heart whether you blog or not.

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