I went to visit my grandmother this weekend. The first thing I noticed was how skinny she is. I hugged her tightly and told her “You look great”. Then my sister chimes in and says “She’s too skinny”. With a quick “knock it off” glance I repeated “You look great!” And then my grandmother even says “You’re not just saying that because everyone tells me I’m too skinny”. “No, I’m not just saying that, you look great!”
Aside from my grandmother being very skinny, another thing you will quickly notice when you go to visit is how immaculate her house is kept. When I say spotless, I mean spotless. It’s unbelievable how clean and organized her home is and her home has always been this way. I can’t recall ever, EVER walking into my grandma’s house and one thing being out of order! It is picture perfect. I often wonder why I didn’t get this gene. As I sit here on my computer working on my blog instead of cleaning my condo I am secretly wishing for the cleaning gene or a cleaning fairy to do the work for me.
I walked around my grandma’s home, looking at all the knick-knacks, dolls (I did get a love for dolls from her and have a beautiful doll collection myself) and pictures. I couldn’t help but marvel at how young we all were in those pictures. Wow, there’s a picture of my father when he was very young, my grandma very young (probably my age now) my sisters, nieces, nephews, there’s me in my high school graduation photo and in each picture, although I know exactly who everyone is, they seem like different people from who they are now. It all seems so long ago. A lifetime ago. Someone else’s lifetime. I feel like I don’t even know the people in those pictures, myself included. Wow, how could so much time have passed? How did I go from a smiling 17 year old full of hope and promise to a 41 year old woman facing her greatest fears? And the one thing noticeably missing, well to me at least, in this collection of family photos, is the pictures of my children. My family is missing. Will my children’s pictures ever find a place in my grandmother’s beautiful home? Will they ever know this amazing woman? The thought that the answer to that question could be no, breaks my heart.
I feel like I’m missing my mantel with my pictures. I am missing my life being told through a collection of photos placed neatly around my house. Photos from my childhood, to my wedding, to the birth of my baby and on and on. I had this picture in my mind of what my life would be like at 40 and now that image has faded and I’m trying to replace it with a new picture, a better picture.
I had a picture in my head of what my grandma would look like when I was older and yes, that picture is different too. So what if she is too skinny, she’s in her 80s and I bet all her life (like me) she’s worried about her weight. So let her be too skinny, just let her be! You’re always something in life: too skinny, too fat, too old, too late etc. And as I sat there holding on to an extra 20lbs gathered nicely around my waist and ass, I looked at my skinny, frail grandmother, her immaculate house, all the photos and I thought so what!!! So what she’s too skinny and so what I’m not! For the 1st time I didn’t care I gained weight. I didn’t care that I wasn’t picture perfect. For the 1st time I’ve completely accepted me for me and I think I look great. And my grandma does too! And if someone had taken a picture of us that day it would have been the perfect picture to show my kids!