Friday, May 27, 2011

Patience - A Tribute to my Dear Grandmother

(Me, my brother, my Grandmother and my Mom, July 2009)

Ok, I'm trying to get back on track here. I have been absent for a few weeks with good cause. And I will say now, this post is not an easy one to write. I was called on Saturday, May 7th by my mom, saying "Come now, get here. Grandma is not doing well." I found the first flight I could out of NM and left that day for OH. If you remember an earlier post, my grandmother has been in and out of the hospital for the past few months. Just getting older, her body wearing out. And on May 8th, Mother's Day, with all her children and some grandchildren by her side, she passed on.

(From upper right, clockwise - Grandma, Grandpa, Matthew and Erin hiding, Tammy, Joe, Greg, Teresa (my mom) and me.)

My Grandmother, even though I always lived far away, passed on to me (also by way of my mom) a great strength - patience. A strength you wouldn't quite count in today's world, and one that is greatly lacking in my opinion. Patience with family and friends, with your job and those you work with, when waiting in line - anywhere! I am proud to have this trait passed on to me and I know it comes by way of my Grandmother.

(My brother Joe, My mom, me and Grandma on the Mississippi River)

She was an amazing quilter, beginning when she was just a little girl and lasting till her final 85th year. Another trait passed on was quilting (again also passed down through my mom). I am proud to have a three generational quilt with all the quilting done by my grandmother, all the sewing and piecing done by my mom, and all the fabrics picked by me. The only three generational quilt in the family. Obviously one of my favorites.

I will greatly miss my grandmother. She was a quiet strength of the family that I am already missing. The house isn't the same without her. But I know she is there, watching, quietly. Patiently. She waited until her entire family had been there to see her from near and far. Until we all had lunch (in two shifts!!) and were settled again, when she finally said she had had a full life. Full of family, friends and the OH community she loved.

I love you Grandma Bertke and thank you for everything you have passed on. I cherish those things, everyday. Ok, I need more tissues!

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