I went to see my grandmother's grave.
Remembering the processional led me to her headstone.
The headstone is Salisbury pink.
On it is a picture of my grandmother.
She was in her early forties. It was before I knew her.
Written above her picture are the words, "A joy to the world" 1927-2009.
I thought about the white hat and dress she wore. I wondered if they were holding up.
Then I wondered if she knows that Uncle Darryl is back in jail.
And that Uncle Robert is using again.
So I told her.
Auntie Nessa is holding on to her sobriety. You would be proud of her.
Auntie Diana was in the hospital for a few days. She needed you.
My mother is doing the same thing.
Sam called me Sunday. She was crying. She said, "I usually call Nana but..." She misses you.
Jayda said a psychology class she'd taken last semester is helping her cope with your death.
Justin's keeping up the house.
I think about you every night.
The image of the tear that ran down your face the day before you died is embedded into my memory.
Looking around the cemetery I said, This is a great place to get rest. Some days I wish I could lie beside you.
Now I know how you felt when you were here, always worried about your children.
I feel like I have picked up your burden. It's a heavy one.
I'm glad you've been able to lay it down and rest in peace.
Shivering from the cold I got back into the car.
I looked at her picture once more before I drove off.