They’ll Grow Back

I think of my Grandma today.  The little television set in her kitchen. Her closet.  A treasure chest of costume jewelry and coloring books.

I picture myself curled up on the couch cushions beneath a portrait she made, from thread, of a girl reading.  How it came to our house when it no longer belonged in hers. 

I remember, just after she was gone, someone wondered out loud, if we had been close.  And I didn’t know how to answer that.  I didn’t know if I had ever been close to anyone.  What it meant to be near anything at all.  So I stumbled over words. Well.  No. Yes. But…still.

She kept plants at the window, always. Some bright and in bloom.  Others with leaves yellow, withered.  I asked why she kept those at all. 

They’ll grow back, she said, standing over a pot of coffee. 

And they did.

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15 thoughts on “They’ll Grow Back

  1. I've been thinking of my grandma lately, too. she was very classy, a total Donna Reed from the 1950s, to the point she still wore pearls and low heels while making dinner for everyone into her 80s.

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  2. After a friend's brother-in-law was killed tragically, a coworker asked her if they “had been close.” What response were they looking for, I wonder? Would it have dulled the pain of his passing if she said “no”? We talked about that for quite a while over dinner. I know people struggle when others are grieving, and no one knows “the right thing” to say. It's just so hard.

    These are lovely remembrances of your grandmother — I'm sure she was a very kind, wise woman.

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  3. Moving. I've been thinking about my grandmother a lot lately too. I had a kind one and a difficult one, and I realized how we overlooked the kind one so often because the other was so full of drama. I miss my kind grandma. xoxo

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  4. A beautiful post, Melissa. And a wonderful grandmother. And the answer to the question you were asked is, can one truly 'know' another person? I believe that you have held onto a precious thread of your grandmother that is opened with that simple memory.

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  5. Very beautiful. Funny how a relationship can be so hard to define. I love how elegantly you show how a person can weave themselves so tightly into our life without us even realizing it sometimes.

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