It did not come as a shock, she has been in hospice care for months, and I said my goodbye’s a while ago, when she was still slightly lucid.
My grandmother and I were never close. But she shared a very close bond with my younger brother Kevin. He was her golden child. Even when she recognized few other people she always lit up when he entered a room. So although her passing is sad, what bothers me most is that my dad, my mother, and my brother are hurting. Not to mention my aunt who has been at her side everyday for the last few months of her life, and had to deal with all the horrible things that people do when affected by dementia.
Tonight we are having a family dinner with my grandmother’s significant other, Juan Carlos. My grandparents were divorced before I was born and ever since I can remember Juan Carlos and Niva have lived together. I only found out a few years ago that they had never married. I always just assumed that they had.
Juan Carlos is old and frail and all of his family lives in Chile. So tonight is our last meal with him before he moves back to Chile for good. My dad and aunt have decided not to tell him that my grandmother has passed. I am angry about this, but it’s their decision. They are worried that if they tell him he will have a heart attack and die here, before he gets to see his family. Juan Carlos’s birthday is on Saturday. They plan to tell him about Niva when he is settled in Chile and perhaps a bit stronger. Till then they have told him that she has taken a turn for the worse and that she is “quarantined” which is why they can’t let him see her before he leaves. The whole situation sucks. I think he deserves to know the truth.
My poor grandmother had a very hard life. I’m very sad that things ended the way they did, but finally after so many years of pain and heartache she can rest in peace. All I can do is wear the pearls that are the only thing I still have that she gave me, and say goodbye to Juan Carlos.
Sadly I find myself using my favorite quote from Lady Jane more often these days…
“The soul takes flight to the world that is invisible. But there arriving she is sure of bliss, and forever dwells in paradise.” – Plato