Te quiero mucho, Abuelita xoxo
Abuelita is gone. The orphan, the widow, the last of her siblings. I'd like to think she is now being welcomed by the souls she had been loving and missing. Do they recognize each other by hearts, by thoughts, memories, maybe? Because in my mind there isn't a place, it's a... It's personal and doesn't matter. We all have our ideas.
I feel an irritation, my nerves are exposed. I sit bothered. Perhaps it is because all my life I have wanted her by my side the way my Granmo has been but she was in another country and our visits were never long enough. When I was a child I wanted everyone I loved with me, I didn't like having to say good bye to anyone. Letters I wrote took forever to reach her, phone calls never resulted in conversations, the connection...we always had to yell. I saved all her letters to me, I can recall the sound of her voice, I have videos of our last conversations face to face. I don't feel like viewing them now. I feel her gone. When August held my face in her hands tonight to give me a kiss...she would do that.
I am lucky, very lucky to have had her this long in my life. The image that keeps coming to me is her reading in bed. She was a reader, she knitted, she crocheted. I took a picture of her undies drying on the clothesline the last time I visited her. When I was five or so I remember peeking in the bathroom after she showered and seeing her put on her bra and thinking how large it was, how old she was, how pale she looked. When she came out of the bathroom a warm humidity followed along with the scent of her powder and soap. I saved some of the powder and a bar of the soap she would use. They are in a cigar box I covered with stickers. I was a kid that would save everything. I have that box in a closet in the next room. I can recall the combination of those scents.
Last night I was reading French poems and thought of her. Today at the library I found a book that had a recipe for salpicon and I always remember the one time she made it when we visited and how delicious it was. I checked it out and thought of her. At the grocery store this afternoon August picked up an Archie comic book. I took it from her because I couldn't believe it looked just like the ones my Abuelita would buy and read to me before bedtime. I had not seen one in years. I handed it back to August and said,"My Abuelita would read those to me when I was a little girl." Tonight we watched a Busby Berkeley film and I thought of her shoes. I think of her all the time. She taught me to crochet and to knit.
Last week I visited a friend and she showed me a blanket she is crocheting. I taught her how to crochet the way my Abuelita showed me. I told her, "You know, it's sort of neat the way I showed you something I only learned from my Abuelita, not from books or a class or anyone else. It's like you have a part of her somehow, like you met. It is something special" My friend agreed. Abuelita wanted me to have a baby for so long, "Una creatura que puedes bañar y vestir como una muñeca." I loved the way she never carried a purse but wore her wallet under her arm. Maybe I will watch the videos tonight. I feel so irritable. I feel her gone.