I was sitting here doing some crocheting and listening to my iPod when Rascal Flatts song "Ellsworth" came on and I was reminded of my Grandma Berkley. If you listen to country music and have heard this song, you know why I would burst into tears. You see Grandma had dimentia before she passed away and she didn't remember a lot of us. Then I looked at the calendar and realized that today would have been her 88th birthday. I started thinking about her and realized that I miss her so much!
The last three years of her life she spent in a nursing home in Ogden and I didn't go see her very often. I know that I should have gone to see her more often but it was so hard for me to see her wasting away and not remembering me, her youngest granddaughter. When we would go we always took Kaitlyn with us and Grandma ALWAYS remembered who Kaitlyn was. There was a special bond there that I think was strong during the pre-existence and when Kaitlyn was sent to our home it was like two very old and dear friends had met again after a short separation. It was a wonderful thing to be a small part in that reunion, but also very sad because my memories of my Grandma as she used to be were fading.
During the three years that Grandma was in the nursing home, my family was priveleged enough to live in the house that Grandma and Grandpa raised my mother in. After several years of suffering from depression and anxiety I was able to heal and feel the love that dwelled in that home from so long ago. I was able to become me again. Our family grew closer together and helped each other to heal what had been damaged because of the depression that I had suffered for many years and was never diagnosed. We were going to buy that house and finish raising our children and have a place for our grandchildren to have wonderful memories, but we needed to move on.
Because of the dimentia and many lonely years that took over Grandma's mind, my good memories started to fade. Since moving out of the house and regaining some of my mental health I have been able to find those good memories of Grandma. Grandpa and Grandma had a HUGE garden in the backyard and every summer we watched, helped them take care of that garden. I barely remember sitting in the pea patch when I was really young shelling and eating those peas. Grandma always made the most amazing meals with the produce of that garden.
My Grandparents weren't rich by any means, but they had a lot of love for their family and I'm sure that as Grandma's mind failed her, it scared her. I am so thankful for the Gospel and the knowledge that that has given me. Because of Grandma's faithfulness and testimony and example, my Grandpa joined the church. Their love of the Gospel helped to instill in my Mom and in Me the love of the Gospel and helped me to strengthen my testimony.
Grandma's house always smelled of fresh food. She baked some amazing zucchini brownies that tasted like chocolate. Her garden salads have always been my favorite and I haven't been able to find a good one since.
Grandma loved to read. I remember sitting on her lap or next to her on the couch while she read to me. Her love of reading was passed on to my Mom and then on to me and hopefully on to my children.
I really miss my Grandma today. I love her very much and can't wait for the day that I am able to hug her and kiss her soft cheek.