Remembering GrinGran

11 years ago, I lost one of my best friends, my closest confidant, and favorite teacher. My Grandmother. My “GrinGran.”

GrinGran was the most vibrant soul I’ve ever encountered in my short almost 32 trips around the sun. She was charming. She was full of life and energy.

She had the best outlook on life. She was always so cheerful, always so happy…even with all that she’d been through. An alcoholic husband who drank away all their money…forcing them to move in the middle of the night to avoid bill collectors…having to give up her dream of becoming a singer to take care of her family…being morbidly obese with a ton of health problems…even in the end, when her health was failing, she always had a smile on her face, and a song in her heart.

Today marks 11 years since she’s been gone. Not a day goes by when I don’t think of her. If there is one person I could model myself after, its her. She was never sad. She never let the little things get to her. She wasn’t afraid of anything. Well, ok, she was afraid of bugs. Like…DEATHLY afraid of bugs. Like…to the point of spraying the hell out of a leaf because she thought it was a spider.

I remember the first time (and only time) she forced me to listen to opera. I didn’t want to listen. But then I did…and I fell in love. Every time after that was not forced. It was a pleasure.

GrinGran is the reason that I started studying music. The reason I wanted to be an opera singer for so long.

I remember she used to take my sister and I to the library or to the book store…she always encouraged us to read, and to learn…my love of books is her fault.

I think of all the fun we had, all the games we used to play…all the movies we used to watch…

I miss her every day.

But, she’s taught me so much…even in the time that she’s been gone. She reminds me every day to live life, and to try to not be afraid.

I fail her sometimes. But I know if I keep trying, someday, I can be like her.

For now, I can remember that she is always with me. She is always in my heart, and always in my mind.

I miss you GrinGran.

And I love you. Every day.

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