What follows is the eulogy my daughter read at her Grandma's service last week. When I got divorced in 1998, my mom stepped in to help. Angilese was 10 at the time.
I’m not sure why, but whenever I’ve missed my grandma I always picture her hands. I’ve always thought there was something poetic about them. How those knobby, speckled, arthritic things could move with such grace. The soft, paper-thin skin stretched over bone that could deliver such comfort. They seemed to be the medium from which she poured so much inspiration, teachings, and love into me. She passed on so much through those hands; I know I won’t get by long without being reminded of her in some way. The sugar cookies we used to bake together will taste like her. Crocheted yarn will feel like her. Dusty barns and horses will smell like her. And for a long time, I know I will hear her voice when I see a picture of her, I hope I always do.
My grandma was the type of person that made friends and had admirers everywhere she went. It was absolutely impossible not to admire and love her. She was stubborn, strong-willed, and accomplished whatever she set out to do without looking back, and I thoroughly believe that her kindness is the type of kindness that could change the world, because she wasn’t prideful and she rarely thought of only herself. She inspired me and gave me the strength to push the limits of my comfort zone. She always gave me gentle nudges towards accepting and embracing my own uniqueness and her unconditional love laid the bricks of my foundation.
Never judgmental of others or speaking unkindly, she didn’t know how to be heartless; wasn’t capable of it. She shared her insightful wisdom without hesitation and in such a way that reassured yet conveyed her thoughts. It seems to me now, that she was the perfect balance of strength and gentleness.
When I think about all the wondrous ways she impacted my life and apply that to how she could have touched the lives of everyone else the product is mind blowing. My Grandma will live on in the hearts, minds, and teachings of all whom she has mentored and taught. She will forever inspire in me compassion where there is need of it, forgiveness where there has been hurt, and an empathetic ear to understand and comfort.
This picture was taken 3 days before my mom passed. At the time, I had a foreboding sensation that it would be the last picture.