Today started like any other day. I woke up, got ready and went to Starbucks. I walked around looking for something to do and decided to take the ferry to Devonport.
During my ferry ride, my Mom called to tell me that my Grandmother had passed away. I called Bryan and let him know his Great Grandmother was gone and I just walked. I hate being half way around the world right now and wish I was home in Newfoundland.
Nan and Granda were married for 73 years, Granda just turned 94 and Nan would have been 91 in July. They had 15 children, 28 grandchildren and 24 great grandchildren. They always lived in the same house in Hare Bay and my Dad was born in that house. They have lived in nursing homes in Gander for the past couple years.
My grandfather is with my parents tonight and they will take the gentlest care of him.
My Nan had dementia and it is a very cruel disease. I last saw Nan in May last year and it was my first time seeing her in the nursing home. Mom prepared me for Nan not knowing who I was, but when we went in the room she looked at Mom for a while and said “Cynthia” and then looked at me and said “Jackie” and I was so happy. Granda came in and was fussing over her adjusting her nightie. All of a sudden Nan looked about 16 years old, lifted her shoulder and grinned up at him. I’ll never forget it ❤️
This is not unexpected for any of us and if there is a heaven, Nan is now holding Floyd, Morris, Nancy, Duke, Gale and Austin tight and she is very happy. I believe my Grandfather wants to just be with her and I can’t imagine how he’s feeling tonight without her. My heart aches for him.
My memories are of a woman in a class all her own. She was kind, strong, dignified, classy and a loving grandmother. She was a school teacher before getting married and raising her family. She always remembered all of our birthdays and we used to get a hand knit sweater from her every Christmas. I only have 1 left of mine, but I have all of Bryan’s put away in a trunk for his children someday.
I remember her looking at me when I was pregnant and telling me I was having a boy and she was right. I still have the baby blue sleeper she gave me and I had Bryan’s first pictures taken in it. I remember when I threw out the baby books and started taking her advice on what was best for Bryan. My logic was do I want to read a book that a man wrote or listen to a woman that has done this 15 times. She was always right!
I remember visiting Newfoundland every summer and waking up in the morning to the smells of the wood stove, bread and raisin bread baking in the oven. Nothing better than her bread!
I remember arriving every summer and running in to see her. Nan would either be in the kitchen with her apron on or sitting in her rocking chair knitting. She gave the best hugs and kisses.
Hold your loved ones tight, love and forgive them and cherish every moment you’re blessed to have. We never know when we’ll never have another chance to tell someone you love them and hold them tight.
Much love ❤️
Jackie is “Mom” to one amazing son, an IT professional and an obsessed traveller. She spends her time reading, golfing at Ladies League and implementing software projects. Jackie has travelled to all 7 continents and 93 countries and is always planning the next destination and adventure!