Back With More Bad News

My grandmother died a short time ago. It wasn't unexpected but it happened a little bit faster than I had anticipated. And now I am sitting at the computer, trying to process it all. I don't think that it has sunk in yet, not completely.

The call came a few minutes after midnight, I didn't have to look at the caller ID to know that it was bad news, what else do you hear about late at night or early in the morning. Twenty years ago if the phone rang then it would have been a girl friend or friend with benefits. Twenty years ago it might have been one of the boys looking for a ride home or a shoulder to cry on.

Those days are gone and I have come to dread those late night calls because they almost always mean that someone is gone.

My grandmother is gone. The woman who used to take my sisters and I on long walks is here no longer. The woman who had more energy than anyone I ever met has finally run out and the world is a sadder place for it.

Across town my mother, aunt and a sister are sitting with my grandfather, who after 75 years of marriage is now a widower. My heart breaks for him more than anyone.

They met when they were 11 and spent the next 85 years together, a lifetime. It is not a tragic loss, she lived a long and full life. But my grandfather's world just collapsed into a million pieces. And there is nothing that I can offer to fix that other than soft words of encouragement.

And will I offer those. I will do all that I can to help. Every thought, idea, trick I can come up with will be his, but I know that in the end it will fall short and for that I am sorry.

Sometimes words are simply inadequate or perhaps the shortcoming lie in the person who wishes to be wordsmith. At the moment I don't know what to say or rather I don't like what I am saying so I keep deleting and rewriting.

It is not my way, at least not on the blog. Here in my corner of cyberspace the words flow like water down a rocky stream. Here is where I would give you a better description of the woman my grandmother was and why she was so deserving of our love.

But the words fail me. I cannot translate that which I see in my head to paper. So in a few moments I will shut down the computer. In the morning I will resume my role as father and I will have to tell my children that grandma has gone. I need some time to think about what I want to say so for now this will be it.

I'll share more thoughts and ideas about grandma later, for now let me say that I loved her very much and I will miss her more. We aren't given that many grandmothers and now I have none. The world is indeed a darker place.


Neil said...

I'm sorry to hear the sad news.

One Wink at a Time said...

So very sorry for you and your family, Jack.

HSaboMilner said...

So Sorry for your loss. You were so fortunate to have had her as such a large part of your life for so long.
May her memory be a blessing.

Our thoughts are with you.

The Rebbetzin said...

so sorry for your loss.

SuperRaizy said...

It hurts so much to lose someone you love. My thoughts are with you and your family.

Gail said...

Very sorry for your loss.

Anonymous said...

In many ways, losing my grandmother was more traumatic than losing my mother 11 years before. I am really sorry for your and your grandfather's loss. Many many hugs my friend. I know it's hard.

V-Grrrl @ Compost Studios said...

I always enjoyed your stories about your grandparents. I didn't grow up with any around and wished I had. Hearing about their marriage, I tried to imagine how mine (which is 28 years long) would look to me if made it to the 75 year mark, how I might see this time in my life from a more mature vantage point.

Even though I didn't know them, your grandparents inspired me just a bit from afar.

I'm truly sorry for your loss.

Kelly Miller said...

My condolences for your loss. Grandparents are an amazing connection to who we are, who were were, where we came from, and where we're headed. I know you'll carry her with you and continue to share her wonderful spirit with your children as they age. My heart is with your grandfather, as well.

Mrs. S. said...

Baruch Dayan HaEmet.

May your family be comforted among the mourners of Tziyon and Yerushalayim.

SAHD PDX said...

So sorry for your loss, or more poingantly your Grand Fathers loss.

Jack Steiner said...

Hi Neil,

Thank you.


We appreciate it.


We're forever grateful for the time that we did have.

Hi Rebbetzin,

Thank you.


It is not easy, but we'll get by. She was a great lady.


Thank you. Hope that you are doing well.


Thank you. Enjoy the heartiversary, that is pretty cool.

Vgrrrl- They would be very touched to hear that. I have often thought and wondered about the decades they spent together. Just amazing.


You are so very right about connections to ourselves. They really do show us so many things.

Mrs. S.,

Thank you. Chag Sameach- may it be filled with joy.


Thank you, it is appreciated.

Erica M said...

I'm very sorry for your loss. You've written about it quite profoundly.

The Rebbetzin's Husband said...

Very sorry to hear it, Jack.

Jack Steiner said...

Hi Erica,

Thank you. Part of celebrating grandma's life is writing about it all.


I appreciate it.

Anonymous said...

HaMakom Y'neichem. Grandmothers hold the secrets of our past selves. Now you will learn how to walk on without her. The world will be a dimmer place.

May your grandma's name always be sweet on your lips.

James (SeattleDad) said...

Sorry Jack. Give your Grandfather a warm embrace and let him know that there are a lot more people thinking of him than he could imagine.

Jack Steiner said...


As always I very much appreciate your comments. The world is indeed dimmer, but the memories are still with us.


I shared that with him. He was very touched and asked me to convey his gratitude. Thank you.

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