Shortly after the new year I went to Texas to help care for my grandmother after a corrective back surgery. When I got back, I got very sick. I am finally better and I wanted to work through some of my feelings from the Texas trip.
I am absolutely grateful I was able to go to Texas and spend some quality time with my grandmother. It was probably the most rewarding thing I will do this year. I got to reconnect with her and and frankly connect for the first time with my cousin. Whatever kept me from being able to be “real” with my dad’s side of the family for much of my life is dissolving away and I love what I am finding. I won’t go too heavily into all the craziness (on my part) that caused it to take so long. I will however say my cousin is hillarious, witty, strong, independant, honest and one of the least pretentious people I have ever met. We talked about some very dark times in our lives and we shared some seriously deep laughs. Same thing with my grandmother. I hope they both now understand how much they mean to me.
I stayed with my uncle while I was in Texas and from the moment I walked into the house I was hit with just how much everything reminded me of my aunt (who passed in September). At times being there, with the people who were closest to my aunt was so difficult I did not know If I would make it. You could easily choke on the grief. My uncle is just now walking around again as it has taken him months to physically rehabilitate from the accident. I think now the full weight of his loss is really sinking in. It sunk in for me as soon as I got there. I spent the first two nights crying myself to sleep because I could see the pain people I love were going through and felt helpless.
Physically my grandmother was improved from the day I picked her up. It did become apparent that her own grief was manifesting itself in a lack of attention to her own daily health maintenance so my main goal became getting her back on track. Getting her to visit my uncle (who needs family around him as much as he can get i think). I was able to do both, and I think I was able to make an impression on everyone there. I feel confident that my cousin now knows she has an ally in me. She can come to me for anything, and that is how it should be. My uncle started playing music again, and I think my grandmother might try to play bridge at the “club house” of her little senior community.
I know I am bragging but, shamefully these were people I did not know at all before I left for Texas. Now that I am over my first sickness of the year, I am proud that I was able to do some good. I think it was the best way I could honor my aunt and the best way to start off my year.