grandma mary

i have been putting off writing this entry for nearly a week now.
my grandma hess is not doing well and will likely die very soon. i have not had the words to express how i am feeling or to adequately describe her. a woman who had just short of a dozen children. a woman with flaws just like the rest of us. a woman with spunk and love. a woman whose life was full of loving god and her family.
i went to visit her last week, to say goodbye. as i sat there beside her, unable to form many words at all, the thing i wanted to tell her more than anything, what i attempted to say through my tears was, "grandma, i started a quilt for lillie last week. i wish i could show it to you." i thought it strange that of all the things that i could have said at such a moment, that what was in my heart was a longing for her to know how much she has passed on to the generations to come. my grandma made quilts for her children and her grandchildren, and also for mcc to distribute where they were needed most. she was a women that served and loved.
i want to be a woman like that.
i have so many treasured memories of afternoons playing in the backyard at their millersville house, of sleepovers there with the cousins closest to my age, of her reading books to us and playing authors together, of her fabulous meals and her seemingly endless energy.
she walked down the aisle to her seat on my wedding day almost three years ago. i think that may be my last memory of her walking. the last three years have been hard on her. i so wish now that i had chosen to make more time for her, to get to know her.
but here we are. below are are two photos of her holding lillie (less than 2 weeks old) for the first time. i am so very glad they had the chance to meet.

check out my cousin gina's entry and my cousin abby's post about our fiesty little grandma. both are beautifully written.
there is a song by denison witmer called grandma mary that has reminded me of her since i heard it for the first time. i have been listening to it a lot this week. click here to enjoy it with me.
i love you grandma.

**update on 11.23.08:
my grandma passed away this morning, a bit before 6.
she was 88.


Abby said...

This is lovely and I think your point about the quilts is right on. Even if Grandma never sees your quilt for lillie, I am sure she will soon know the legacy that she is leaving behind.
By the way my family and I are leaving tomorrow to drive into PA, so we should be in touch about finding some time to visit.
Love you!

Esther J. said...

I am still crying
That was beautiful!

Queenie said...

Thanks, cousin. It's wonderful that you had a chance to tell Grandma about Lillie's quilt. What a great way to thank her in a way she could relate to deeply: showing care by creating beautiful and useful things for people.