I called my grandmother this morning. She’s in an “assisted living center” near my Aunt and Uncle. Apparently Saturdays, in particular, are hard for her because the schedule is different than the week days and it is difficult for her to cope. So my mom asked for each of us kids to take turns to call my grandma on Saturdays. So today I called.It turned out that I was really glad that I talked to her. She seemed happy to hear from me and she told me about her birdfeeder and the groundhog that comes and climbs up the pole to eat the birdseed. I was surprised to hear this, because I didn’t think that groundhogs could climb. They’re just so fat and dumpy and you usually only see them when you have to swerve to miss them on the road.
The other thing that I learned from talking to my grandmother is that I really could call her more than I do. I guess that I’ve been a little afraid. I just remember when she had so much more life. She was my favorite grandma and I had so much fun. Now she is old and shriveled and can’t breathe well and is waiting to die. It’s hard to see her that way, especially when I have so many fond memories of her when I was younger.
Ok, here’s one story:
One time when my grandma was visiting, my mom caught me eating raw Bisquick. (I know, I know, it’s disgusting, but I had a “raw” phase that I went through where I liked any kind of baked goods raw. Raw pancake batter, raw bread dough, and yes, even raw Bisquick. It tasted much better than raw flour. Never liked that much.) She did the proper motherly thing of telling me to stop, and not to eat raw Bisquick.
My grandmother defended me, saying, “Why can’t he eat raw Bisquick? It won’t hurt him, just let him do it!” I remember really appreciating that she stood up for me and my Bisquick fix.
The phone call really turned out better than I expected. Though she’s shriveled and weak, her mind is still very sharp.
I really should call her more.