Here with us.

We began to make preparations to move across town, right before my Grandma passed away in August. As I shared our plans to buy a new house, we talked about selling our current home. While I visited with my Grandma one afternoon, she asked me how much we would list our house for. She was agitated when I told her the number. “You did so much work. You need to make much more,” she told me. I shrugged. What could I do about that? The figure I had shared was what our real estate agent said it was worth.

Two days after my Grandma passed away, our real estate agent came over to take pictures and have us sign paperwork for listing our home. As we signed the paperwork, she said that she had been thinking we could list our house higher. “It’s really very nice,” she said. I also thought it was very nice, but my husband kept reminding me I was biased. But in the end, we listed our house for closer to the number my Grandma had thought was fair.

Then, last week, on moving day, after two trips back and forth with a moving truck and endless trips to and from the house with boxes and furniture, one of our tired movers stopped me in the driveway. “I found this,” he said, fishing something from his pocket. He handed me a keychain my Grandmother had brought home from one of her trips to Italy. The keychain bore the face of the Blessed Mother, similar to the medallion that hung from my Grandma’s rearview mirror in her car and the statues adorning her own home. I didn’t think much of this then, just slipped it into my pocket and kept on moving.

But in a quiet moment later that night, I felt the weight of the keychain in my pocket. As I reached in and felt the cool metal between my fingers, I wondered where the mover had even found the keychain. I didn’t remember packing it and I couldn’t even think about where it might have been. It felt significant, of all the things that could have slipped out of place, it was this. It made me feel like maybe my Grandma was there. Maybe she’s still here with us.

Last night, as my daughters worked on lawn signs to celebrate World Kindness Day later this week at school, my youngest daughter Rose said something about my Grandma. “Why do you always smile when you talk about her?” my middle daughter Adi asked. Rose shrugged.

“Do you miss her?” I asked.

Rose held up her fingers to show “a little bit.”

“I miss her a lot,” I said.

“Me too,” my oldest, Wren chimed in.

“Me too,” Rose revised. “Grandma loved us SO much.”

She sure did.

5 thoughts on “Here with us.

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