Friday, January 3, 2014

Love & Loss: My Nana Hannon

Again I went silent. Not because I was keeping a secret, but rather the weight of what I had to say was heavier than my words allowed. I didn't want to just announce the passing of my Nana because I wanted to write in such a way that would honor her. But I know I cannot return to writing until I have shared this momentous loss. And I have realized that my words will never be strong enough to carry my love for her.

I wrote once before about my Nana and her battle with Alzheimer's. It was long and hard and she saw it coming long before it swept her away. She passed away on December 6th, 2013. She lived her last few months at my parent's house and I saw her only a few weeks prior to her death. My family provided care to her that no amount of money could bring. They tended to her with the love and grace that she lived. We knew she was close to the end but she had battled back so many times, it was hard to believe.

The last few days, I waited, knowing what was going to happen. But still, my heart broke when my mom called me on that Friday afternoon. I booked my ticket home and was on a plane the next morning with a baby in my arms.

There are many paragraphs that I have written about this but only a few that I will share. My Nana was many things and private was one of them. I will keep some of my favorite stories tucked away, never to forget.

My Nana was one of the best people I have ever known. She always made me feel loved and it warmed my heart to be in her presence. My Nana was the matriarch. She loved her family and even in sickness, kept us close. She was beautiful and always put together. She loved red lipstick and curlers. She was strong but never loud. She often spoke in a whisper. She loved music and had a pretty voice. She loved tea and toast with jam. She was funny and found laughter easily. She seemed to understand life and knew how to wave away worry. She loved the ocean. She was kind and stubborn and always wanted to help others. Even at the very end, knowing a child was near, made her smile.

She has always been my favorite person for advice. She told me to find a man that treats me well and who makes me laugh. She told me that having fun and laughter will always be important. She was speaking from experience. I asked her once, when her and my Grandpa fell in love. She said she didn't know. She said she didn't know when they met because he was around when they were both children. She remembered him playing baseball 
and that she always loved him. 
She said it so simply. 
It was as if there was no beginning 
and with that, 
no end.