Sunday, August 22, 2010

It has been 10 years and it has been 5 years

My grandparents were married in April of 1942. My grandfather, a retired Brig. General in the Louisiana National Guard; my grandmother a strong woman and deeply cared about her family. My summers were spent with them in New Orleans, watching Days of Our Lives. Our holidays were spent in New Orleans, around the Christmas tree. With 3 sons and 9 grandchildren, the house was always filled with laughter.

In June 0f 2000, I was preparing to leave for a stint with a summer camp in North Carolina. I was driving down 95th Street in Overland Park, Kansas when I got the phone call. My grandfather had passed away. I sobbed at a stop light. In a flash, we had to get packed and fly to New Orleans. I flew down, not knowing if I would still be going to North Carolina, but packed for it anyways. One night, before the funeral, my dad came into where I was staying and said that I needed to go to camp. That my Papa would want me to go. I never heard the 21 gun salute at my grandfather's funeral, but I still remember the wake.

In August 2010, my grandmother's health was failing. She had suffered a stroke in January and she never fully recovered. I had just started a new temping job with a bank (the job I would eventually hold for 3 years) and received a phone call that within the next few days, my grandmother would probably pass away. On the 22nd of August, as I was walking around the mall, looking for something to wear to a funeral, I got the phone call. Again, I packed, getting ready to fly down and back for her funeral. Unlike my grandfather, the woman in the casket was not my Grammy. Her weight had dropped drastically and her hands were so tight.

It's been 1o years since I loss my Papa; it's been 5 years since I loss my Grammy. And in case you have been living under a rock for the last 5 years, it has also been 5 years since Hurricane Katrina. The constant reminder of what New Orleans has become is a ping in my soul of what happened 3 days before Katrina struck. I stood in the hot sun and watched as they put her casket in the tomb...sometimes, you never forget details like that.

Because this is the eve of my Grammy's death, my soul is hurting. I miss my grandparents. I miss my family, I miss what New Orleans held for me and what it will always mean to me. I miss...

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