A while back I heard DJs on the radio talking about the joys of childhood. They were asking listeners to share what would be their iconic items to embody their positive memories from the past. I didn’t need any more prompting to take a trip down memory lane.
As I listened to the radio, the dining room came flooding back to me. My mom, two sisters and I lived for five and a half years with my maternal grandma. Her role in the house was more like mom, while my mom worked hard and served in the more traditional father role. My grandma created a safe haven for me in the wake of my parents’ divorce.
I don’t even have to close my eyes to see the wall paper in the dining area with the pitcher and platters of food repeated in such a pleasing pattern. I can smell the battered fried fish that was a rare and favorite dinner of mine. I can even hear her voice telling me to be patient while she prepared the meal.
I had many chapters to my childhood and I am thankful for them all. But the time with my grandma was pivotal and wonderful.
I don’t think that there is a week that goes by without my thinking about my grandma. She shaped my life. She loved me in a way that I never doubted. In fact, she may be the only adult in whose love I was and am always confidant. Even now, when I go through trials and triumphs, I know she would say her piece and love me just the same.
We have her table in our kitchen today. It is Grandma’s Table. Our meals, our crafts and games all take place on that table. And silly as it may be, I feel her love pouring out on me because of it. I think about her hollering about the paint I can’t get off of it or grumbling because I don’t use the wood polish enough. I imagine her being proud of who my kids are as they write, play and create at that table. I feel her praise when I make a meal that my family devours.
What would my childhood be without my grandma Mac? I don’t even want to imagine that!