Sunday, May 15, 2011

30 Days of Truth - Day 09 - Someone you didn't want to let go, but just drifted.

I don't know for sure what this post is supposed to mean, but my best guess would be that it refers to someone you are in love with. I tried to imagine it could mean a friend, but I don't see my friends as someone to ever let go of, you may lose touch but the friendship remains. I tried to just look at the literal words.... which are "someone you didn't want to let go"  .... does it mean you are the one letting go? .... or someone you didn't want to let go of you? Either way, there must be someone that is being held on to, in order for there to be any letting go.

When I think of love relationships, I know all the different ways you hold on to someone, but for me it was always do or die, and I either wanted to hold on, or wanted to let go, so there was no "drifting" for me.

If I let go of the whole holding on/letting go part and am left with the just drifted, I have a hard time narrowing in on someone.

The best that I can come up with, is a relationship in which I never quite got a hold on, and that is probably the main reason that we just drifted. That would be with my grandmother, Judy.

She is my father's mother, and for those of you that are not familiar with my childhood, he left the state with his new wife, when I was about two. I had very little contact with him, and although my curiosity and imagination sparked from time to time, I really didn't spend too much time dwelling on the situation. I definitely didn't think too much about my extended family on that side, because I didn't know them. I had only a few names, and had no faces to put with any of them.

The summer after third grade, my best friend and I volunteered at the nursing home down the street from us. It was the first summer since my grandma and mom had died, and I think my grandpa was happy to have me doing something with my time.

It was pretty fun. There were several different jobs for us. We would run the ice-cream shop and serve ice cream on cones to the residents. Sometimes we would play board games or call Bingo. We ran the cash register at the gift shop at times, or cleaned up the library. We also regularly would help people get to the cafeteria for meals and then back to their rooms. When there was no specific assignment for us, we would walk the halls and stop in and visit with residents.

One day we had just visited with one of our favorite ladies, and we were walking down the hall and we heard this man yelling. We went in to see what was bothering him and he started yelling at us that we "needed to push the button!" I can't remember why it was so important, but his tone let us know he thought it was serious business. We followed his directions, only to realize the button he was talking about was the door stop on the wall. When we realized that explaining to him that it was not actually a button was not going to work, we went ahead and pushed it, hoping to calm him down. Nothing was working and he was getting louder and madder. We told him we would find someone to help him.

Out of desperation, we went up to a nurse. The nurses at this place still wore traditional uniforms, including the old fashioned nurse hats. We were not supposed to bother the nurses, but thought this was pretty important. In a nervous hurry, I excused my interruption, so that I could explain what was happening. I went on and on in great detail, explaining how distraught the man was and that he was still yelling in his room. The nurse did not seem to hear a word that I was saying. She looked me up and down and I started getting paranoid. My words slowed to a stutter, because I felt like she was looking too hard. Before I had a chance to ask her what was wrong, she asked me if my name was Shawna.

I confirmed that Shawna was my name, and remember giving my best friend a confused look. The nurse was the one stuttering now and her next words were, "Shawna... and your Dad is Gary?" I was getting weirded out, and then she said, "Shawna, I think I am your Grandma."

I about fainted. All I could think of was my grandma that had died. I started thinking of reincarnation, of ghosts, and my head was spinning. Suddenly I put together that she had asked about my Dad, so she must be me Dad's mom.... my grandma. 

The next moments were so awkward, and I was still worried about the poor guy and the button. She assured me that it was okay; he suffered from dementia and was confused. She got my contact information and asked if she could give it to my Dad. Here I was, talking to my grandma who I had never seen since being old enough to remember, and she was asking if it was okay for her to let my Dad know she had seen me. I wanted to tell her no, because I was afraid he would not care to speak to me. It had been 5 years since I had seen him, and he didn't come for my mother's funeral, much less write or call.

For the following Holiday season, my Grandma invited me to that side of the family's get-togethers. I was reintroduced to aunts and uncles, and my Grandma led me to believe that I would never again be forgotten. We had a few great conversations and I visited with her a couple different times, but it became clear that I just wasn't a part of the family. Our relationship just never took strong enough of a hold to remain.

One Christmas we got to talking about Nursing, because I was thinking of becoming one, and that struck up a passionate conversation. I learned that she, too, was a writer and that she feared it was too late for her, but she strongly encouraged me to write a book. There was lots of promise during that conversation, that we would talk more in the future, but the opportunity never materialized.

I have ran into her at a couple different functions that my Dad or Uncle hosted, and even saw her at Country Buffet once. Unfortunately neither of us has made the time or taken the initiative to see each other. I never intended to let go, so I think I can say that my Grandma is someone I didn't want to let go, but just drifted.

She lives less than 5 minutes away. I think I will take some initiative and hold on this time.



  1. i often wonder what my own posts are supposed to mean. that's the fun i figure, no rules. anyway, found you through barbara. hope all is well.


  2. Wow. Sometimes I don't know how to comment. But I wanted to let you know I was here!!!

  3. Thank you for stopping by C! and Thanks for always being there Barbara :)

  4. Good that you found each other. There are no coincidences.