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  • Writer's pictureBobby Wilhelmson

Grandma's Birthday

Today is July 2nd, which means that my Grandma would have been 88 years old today. This is always the hardest week of the year because last Monday the 25th marked 3 years since my Dad died. I lost Grandma this past December, so this is the first year in my life I haven't been able to at least call my Grandma and wish her a happy birthday. I really took that for granted because I keep going to my phone to think I should be dialing it, but then the reality that she is gone hits me and I feel a loss.

She was in pretty bad shape when she passed, so it really was a blessing that she didn't have to suffer anymore. I'm just glad that Jessi and I were able to be at her side when she passed. A year prior to her passing, I had mentioned to her that I planned on marrying Jessi. She wanted me to propose to Jessi with her engagement and wedding ring. I was stunned, and couldn't help but accept her offer, and a year later Jessi had her ring all cleaned up and it was one of the few things her eyes latched onto when her mind was gradually slipping.

In her final years, she was still giving. She constantly gave to me, and most people saw her as a "feisty, mean lady," but I knew a whole different side of Grandma. She always took a special liking to me out of her three grandchildren. I never quite understood it, and I didn't realize she spoiled me until much later when life unspoiled me. When I was growing up, she took me on TONS of road trips and train rides to the mountains. When her husband passed away when I was two, she never remarried. Instead, she put all of her focus on me and staying home. I wished I would have gotten her out of the house more in her final years when she was still healthy enough to leave. Looking back, I should have made more of an effort, but I am thankful that I was able to tell her everything I wanted to tell her while she was still coherent.

I never had a chance to know my grandparents on my Mom's side of the family, and my Grandpa on my Dad's side died when I was two, so Grandma played the role of four grandparents in my life. And she did it with ease. I am so thankful for everything she has ever given me, and more importantly, her love. I'll never forget all the times she told me that she loved me and how proud she was of me. It really hurt her when my Dad died, and honestly, I don't think she truly recovered from that. Happy birthday to my dear Grandma, and I dedicate my performance tonight to you. I love you so much, and I hope you're giving Dad all kinds of shit wherever you guys are.

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