Grandmothers left loving legacy behind

I was fortunate in my life to have had both of my grandmothers live long into the twilight years of their lives. My dad’s mother was two months shy of 90 when she passed away suddenly and unexpectedly, but peacefully, in her home. My mom’s mother was 95 when she passed away.

I adored my grandmothers, both of them. They were as full of love and goodness as anyone I have ever known. They provided me with lasting memories of what familial, unconditional love should be and I miss them more than I have good words to describe. Memories of my Granny will be of her standing over the stove preparing some of the best Southern food you could ever eat. She was the oldest girl of 12 children and grew up on a farm in south Alabama. She was destined to become one of the finest Southern cooks I would ever know. One of things I received after my other Grandma passed away was her box of recipes. When I find myself missing her, I go to this box and pull out a few of her handwritten recipes. They were all carefully filed and organized and well used. I like to think of her standing in her kitchen in her apron preparing some of these recipes for her family. All meals were events for her. She put thought into planning them and love into preparing them.

Every meal was a sit-down, home-cooked meal for her family, and sadly those kinds of meals are dying traditions. Our lives have exploded with busyness and distractions. We have so many things that take us away from our families, whether it is demanding jobs or Facebook. We can all evaluate our lives and see if we have the proper balance when it comes to caring for our families and also taking the time we need as individuals to participate in hobbies.

I know I can do better. I want to do better. I feel the presence of my grandmothers often, and I know they would want me to put in more effort with my children as they did with theirs. They would want me to put down the computer and read a book to my kids. They would want me to resist the temptation to let my kids eat dinner in the playroom in front of the TV when my husband is working late and gather them around the kitchen table instead. I love them that they make me want to be a better wife and mother. I love them for the legacy they have left. I want to live so my children and grandchildren will look back on my life the way I look back on theirs — with a sense of reverence and awe of what they were able to so lovingly accomplish in their lives.