I just don't. Bad things happen in October.
Almost five years ago, on October 31st 2003, my Nan died. I still can't believe she's gone, that she never got to meet Hamlet, that I'll never hear her call my name again.
I was driving the other day and saw an ambulance. And some part of my brain decided to bring me the memory of my Nan, driving. Probably driving me home after school; too lazy to walk after soccer practice and dinner at 4:30. :) When she'd see an ambulance she'd say, "I always ask God to put a circle of protection around the person riding in there. Because I've been in there and Someone watched over me." In the utter certainty of my teenaged self, I'd tell her that perhaps she should have asked 30 minutes sooner and then the poor soul could have been saved an ambulance ride. She'd laugh at me, chide me gently. But she always took a moment when faced with the shrieking, siren'd evidence of someone else's misfortune to look for grace.
In my car, remembering, I cried. I miss her so.
She was my safe haven. It didn't matter what happened, I could sit with her, be calm with her, have her stroke my hair like a child, and I knew that nothing could ever change the love she had for me. For you see, we had known and loved each other since the day I was born.
She told me again and again the story of my birth, how she drove my mother to the hospital sharing each contraction and breathing along with her oldest daughter, anticipating the birth of her first grandchild. She settled down to wait, as her experience with childbirth had shown that hours would pass before anything happened.
A nurse approached, "Excuse me, but your daughter would like her glasses."
"Pardon?" my Nan said. "What does she want to see?"
"The baby. The baby is coming." Shocked my Nan handed the glasses over. "I never had babies that fast." Nan would tell me, "Never!"
My mother and I were wheeled out of the delivery room. I was wearing a yellow blanket and a shock of curly dark hair. "You were so beautiful." she'd say. "And then, I told your Mom I'd make some calls and come find her. And I swear, when they went to wheel you away, you turned and looked at me. You were only minutes old, but you looked for me as they moved you away."
And if my mom was there, she'd say "You did. I felt you twist in my arms, trying to keep Nan in view."
Oh, if I could still just turn and have her there.....
I'm still looking for you Nan.