I will never forget the month of February of 2016.
I lost Granny (my paternal grandmother) on 2nd February and didn’t expect it to hit me that badly even though I knew all the while that the day would come. She passed away peacefully in her sleep at the ripe old age of 102.
More than three weeks later on the 29th February, Grandma (my maternal grandmother) passed away in the hospital after a 3-month battle with final stage pancreatic cancer. She was 80.
Despite not having the best childhood and growing up years, I was still considered very lucky to have spent more than 30 years with two grandmothers who had taken turns to look after me when I was little. Losing both of them within a month was just too much. No one anticipated that coming.
I shared a stronger bond with Granny because she had lived with us till I was 14. She was such a strong character. Her presence never failed to give me that reassurance – that I knew I could overcome my fears and any obstacles that came my way. When I did well in school, she praised me. When I did badly, she had never for once berated me or belittled my efforts. I really appreciated how Granny always listened to me and took me seriously even though I would tell her all the mundane stuffs that happened in my daily life. No one else in the family did the same hence that was why we shared such a special relationship. She was the only person in my life who gave meaning to what true family love, happiness and friendship ever meant to me. For twenty years, I made the same birthday wish every year and I wished for nothing but for Granny to move back with us just so we could go back to the good old days. She had done so much for me and I wanted to do the same for her. With her passing, all my hopes seemed to have vanished overnight and I had nothing to hold on to or look forward to anymore. As much as I understand that we can never turn back the clock and that life will always have its regrets, I still wish things never have to end this way because she means a lot to me.
I hate all those never-ending family disputes, feuds and dramas because they did nothing but only distanced us from our loved ones. And at the end of the day, we all seemed to have forgotten what was originally important to us because we choose to live with hatred, resentment and anger but not treasure what we still have. While I’m never the protagonist in this long-time war, it is never easy to escape without hurt in the aftermath. I only became closer with Grandma when she was diagnosed with final stage pancreatic cancer in late November last year. It was through our heart-to-heart talks when she shared her life story that I probably had put myself in her shoes and felt her pain. Those painful memories of the past – had to be let go. Let history be history. Let bygones be bygones. What really matters now is, how your existence had ever impacted our lives. Grandma, I believe I need not say more because you would understand. And you would also know how much I appreciated what you had done for me even though we had never shared a very close bond.
I love you two, Granny and Grandma and I hope one day I will see you both again. I will be strong like how I have always been all these years and I will not let those creators of disputes hurt me anymore because with you two gone, everything else doesn’t matter anymore. There are better things in life to embrace like the good memories you have both left me with. I can never say thank you enough but I’m proud, honoured and blessed to have both of you as my grandmothers. If there’s a next life, I hope to be your granddaughter again. I know both of you are watching me from where you are now so it’s not really an eternal farewell – you have only moved to somewhere better.