As y'all know, my grandmother passed away February 9th, at about 5:30 in the afternoon. The days following were filled with funeral plans, with the visitation being on Saturday, and the funeral landing on Valentine's Day. It sounds just like Ma to be buried on Valentine's Day. If I didn't know any better, I'd say she had planned that all along.
She passed peacefully, with no struggle or pain, and Will was holding her hand throughout. We are extremely thankful that it ended the way it did. Of course, we had long been prepared for this time, but still, we all grieved, and we miss her terribly.
The visitation was lovely at Ma's home, as opposed to the funeral home. Ma was right about how much more gracious it is to receive guests into your home with food and relaxed, comfortable surroundings. Ma was able to receive guests in her home when our grandfather passed away, and we all really enjoyed getting to know family friends we had never met. I know that isn't always convenient, but thankfully Will and Spencer were able to get her house ready without too much stress.
We had a delightful surprise while we were there. A few days previous, Stella Wise, a friend of Ma's who has a cake business, had written on the online obituary guest book and mentioned that Ma had a last request of her, and reminded us how Ma always had something fun up her sleeve. Well, she came to the visitation, and presented us with a cake... a cake Ma had ordered for her OWN visitation! That sounds exactly like something Ma would do. What a character!
Everything went well at the funeral the next day. It took place in Florence, near where she grew up, and some of her friends from high school attended, despite the snow. I had made friends with her entire class when I took Ma to her last few high school reunions, and it was so good seeing some of them again. I'm glad they were able to make it.
Will and I decided to eulogize together at the funeral as well. We were pretty nervous about doing it, as we had never spoken in front of an audience before. In fact, being homeschooled, we had never even had the experience of doing something like reading a book report in front of the class. So as you can imagine, there was much trepidation and anxiety weighing on us during the two-hour drive to Florence. But, we successfully made it through our speeches with no blunders or passing out. I was shaking like a whippet, though.
I will always treasure wonderful memories of my zippy, vivacious, and sparkling grandmother. But more importantly, my family and I will cherish the memory of being able to enjoy a richly spiritual and knitted relationship with our Ma before she passed away. We're comforted in knowing that we will see each other again.