Missy and Nana

Moms are amazing, beautiful and human. My own mom died suddenly five months ago. One minute she was here and within 24 hours she was gone. Her oldest granddaughter, Missy, spoke these words to her just before she slipped away. Best Mother’s Day tribute I’ve ever heard.

Nana,

First things first: I am selfish; I don’t want you to go.

Saying “Thank you,” is common courtesy, right? I’m saying “thank you,” not because it is courteous, but because I truly am thankful. Thank you for:

  • Being there when I was born.
  • Letting us stay at your house when mom was getting things together.
  • Teaching me manners and grammar.
  • Teaching me how to sew (it came in handy when I operated on my stuffed animals).
  • Being my audience at school or church-related functions.
  • Those trips to the movie theater and being our ride to places when we didn’t have one.
  • Introducing me to the Golden Corral.
  • Laughing at my bad jokes.

There is so much more I’ll never forget. It’s hard to forget someone that has been a part of your entire life. Nana, in order to forget about the things you have done for me, I would have to forget everything about myself. That’s how much you have impacted my life whether you knew it or not.

I don’t know much about your personal life except for some things mom has told me. I know that you carried or still carry some baggage. To be honest, I don’t care what happened in the way past. What I care about is the last 16 years (still can’t believe I am 16). To me you have been my own personal superhero. If I needed help you were just a phone call away. Speaking of phone calls, thank you for teaching me how to make bacon.

Do you remember when John (Missy’s twin) and I would come to your house? We would play with that doll house and you would always help us set it up. You always got the “Extra” brand of gum, winter mint flavor, and put it in the gum jar so we could get some after lunch. Then John would say something funny and I would start to choke on the gum? Do you remember the stickers you had and would give us for a sticker book? What about the coin collection you put together for us? Remember saying our prayers at bedtime? “Now I lay me down to sleep. I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I shall die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take.” At the end of the prayer we would say, “God bless…” and then name everyone we could think of? I loved it when mom sang to us at night, so I would have you sing. You didn’t know what to sing so we would sing, “Jesus loves the little children,” together.

I’ll miss you Nana. You’ve helped out a lot! Fact is, right now, I’d rather go through the pain of losing you, rather than having had a life without you. Nana, I love you so much, “always always,” as you would say. No goodbyes.

Just, see you in Heaven.

Iris Proctor
Iris is the director of ArborWoman.