Because we love her

Writers have their own brand of tunnel vision when they lose someone.
We sit in our preferred pose – be it in front of a keyboard or with pen in hand – and try to pour our souls out in words.
Sometimes they come in fits and starts, sometimes in one fluid motion, sometimes not at all. What’s cathartic for us may not be all that interesting to anyone else, but that rarely stops us.
Because what’s important about the people we love the most is that people carry on with their best traits, that we don’t lose sight of why we let people make a mark on our world.
We don’t get to pick our family, it’s true, but we can choose who takes the best pieces of our hearts.
So we write about the memories of a woman with a biting wit – of the sort that could drop a lesser-armed opponent in the war of words with just one.
Memories of a woman who could laugh . . . and laugh . . . and laugh.
We want to tell the world that she was a woman who snuck cookies to her great-grandchildren for the simple reason that children need cookies.
We want you to sneak cookies to your great-grandkids, or your grandkids, or even your own kids because let’s face it – we can’t put them in a bubble.
She was a woman who accepted her grandchildren despite their liberal leanings, not because of them.
And so we want to tell you to accept your children, your grandchildren, for being different – but don’t be afraid to let them know how you feel.
You can pester and badger and tease and still love. And if you want to teach your great-grandchild to say something that will drive their mother crazy, it’s OK, she’ll know you love her.
She was a woman who didn’t believe in doing things she had to, but delighted in doing them because she wanted to.
It’s easy to get caught up in the platitudes that come in the days following a loss – “she’s in a better place,” “these things just happen,” “time will heal.”
None are true and all are true at the same time – and although she was too much of a lady to cross her eyes and stick out her tongue, she would have grinned when I did both.
She was proud, and she was private.
She was proud of me, and she always let me know it.
That’s why, for the first time, I’ve obeyed her wishes – I decided not to include her in my column.
But I realized I couldn’t do it. Because here I am, writing.

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