On Friday morning I received word that my grandmother passed away. Such sad news to receive, news that I both anticipated and yet had not braced myself for. We drove to Wisconsin shortly after receiving the news and reunited with our family there. We gathered together at my aunt and uncle's home and dug through boxes of pictures, shared memories, laughs, and tears. We worked together to assemble a bulletin board of collected words and objects from grandma's life to place on display at the visitation and funeral. Upon going through some boxes, we came across a large stack of drawings she created during her adolescent years. So many wonderful drawings. I never knew she drew! And so beautifully! I wish I had known about the drawings while she was alive so we might have talked about them. I am so thankful she saved them. I'm hoping we can scan them so that we will have them for years to come. Later I spent some time in the room where she drew her last breaths and found a photo of the two of us on her dresser. On the wall near her bed hung a small painting of Jesus I recall from my childhood, a picture that always hung in my grandparents home. It made me happy that the painting hung near her bed.
I have not fully processed this loss. Such a bright and beautiful light has gone out. And yet, I find peace knowing she is in a restful state without pain. She lived a bold and full life, one filled with wonderful family, trips around the country, beautiful flowers, great food, many friends, a strong faith, and a lot of love. All of us will be so lucky to live a life like hers.