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It was a cool and breezy day in May and I needed something to do, so I went for a walk around the block. There was a nursing home a few blocks from my home and when I reached it I saw a little old lady with Snow White hair sitting in a wheelchair, all alone. She looked so lonely yet she had a smile upon her face. I could see her mouth moving but nobody was around. I didn’t even know this lady or anything about her but she some how reminded me of my own grandmother whom I had just lost only two months earlier. Oh how I miss that sweet dear soul and our visits together. I also felt a tugging at my heart to go over and talk to her.(probably Grammy saying,”what if that were me.?”) so as I got closer I yelled out..HELLO GRANDMA! The little old lady with the Snow White hair turned toward me and she gave me a big, Beautiful,
Happy smile and waved. I waved back smiled and then continued with my walk around the block because I had too many things to do that day. I started to sing Amazing Grace my mothers and grandmothers favorite song, the one I sang at their funerals, and for the first time in three years I felt at peace; Like my mother and grandmother were right there with me on my walk. I could even hear them humming along.
When I came back the other way I had forgotten about the little old lady until I saw her sitting right next to the fence. She yelled,” Hi Mary!”With glee in her big blue eyes and that big Beautiful smile upon her face. How are you doing? I haven’t seen you in so many years! She exclaimed. Why don’t you come and sit right down here by old granny and tell me what’s going on with the whole family, it seems everyone has forgotten all about me! Well to say the least I was speechless and flabbergasted. For you see, my name is Linda not Mary! But how can I tell that to this sweet old lady who obviously didn’t get any company from friends or family. And when I looked into those big, Beautiful, Longing eyes I just couldn’t say No so I said, ok granny but I can only stay for a little while because I have laundry and dishes waiting for me at home. And as she let out her breath she had been holding she said,
“Oh don’t you worry about that, those things will still be there when you get back.. Unlike me which is not a for sure thing. She giggled and continued on. Now tell me, how’s your mother doing? And that cute little baby of yours? A girl? Right? How old is she now? About 4 years? She asked the questions one after the other, so fast I didn’t even have time to answer. Finally when she paused for a breath, I answered. Yes granny she turned four in April. Her name is April Fern and she is really growing like a plant (excuse the pun). Mother is doing well she is still working.. So how have you been doing granny? I asked to change the subject back to her. Because I didn’t even know this lady or what she was going to say or ask next. She didn’t answer, I don’t know if she didn’t hear me or what so I asked another question a bit louder. Do you have any boyfriends? She said,” Mary Hush your mouth! You know the only one for me is your grandpa Jim! I know granny, I know I was only joking. Sorry! So have you seen grandpa Jim lately? Girl.. Your worse off than I am! She said snickering.. Her blue eyes got misty as she said,” your grandpa Jim has been gone for about twenty years now hunny. But I do see him every now and then, especially in my dreams. How I miss that sweet dear soul! Me too granny.. Me too! I must make a confession sweetie she whispered, that’s who I was talking to when you saw me earlier. And now you coming to visit me, two blessings in one day; how lucky can an ole lady get? Like I said before I am both speechless and flabbergasted, and I can’t believe believe how easily this conversation is going considering.. 1.) I don’t even know who this lady is. 2.) my name isn’t Mary.. 3.) I don’t have any children!  Well granny, I really must be going for now. But I will come and visit again, ok? Ok dear, don’t forget to tell your mother I said hello and for her to come and visit me soon. And give that precious little girl a big hug and kiss from her great granny Dee ok? Ok granny bye for now! And as I hugged her tears rolled down her cheek and I wondered to myself if they were happy or sad tears.. Happy tears for the happy visit? Or sad tears? Her thinking I might not come back to visit again? Or a mixture of both? I would be sure to ask granny on my next visit but I’m guessing Both! Oh my God! I can’t believe I just did that, had that conversation with that lady. Oh well I’ll just have to stop by the cemetery tomorrow and tell mother that granny say’s hi. And my little niece Angie will have to be my pretend daughter. Wait until I tell my fiancé about this one, he’s going to think I’m nuts.. Oh well, maybe I am. The next day when my fiancé Julian came over he wanted to take me out to eat but I told him I wanted to cook him a delicious homemade dinner instead, so that we could talk about something. At first he was thrilled at the idea of a home cooked meal but after some thought he asked,”ok but it’s not about me, right? I’m not in any trouble? No darling it’s not about you and your not in any trouble, this time I said with a playful giggle. It’s about your crazy fiancé and some of the crazy things she does and the crazy things you’ll have to put up with, once you marry her that is, I said laughing. So after a delightful, delicious dinner I spilled out the whole crazy episode that happened to me the day earlier. So.. What do you think Julian? Julian? At first my fiancé was so quiet I thought he was going to walk right out on me. Instead after several minutes he burst out in laughter.. My mouth dropped open and tears began to fall. He gathered me in his arms and said, hunny don’t cry. I’m not marrying a crazy woman at all. I’m marrying a sensitive, Loving, caring woman whom I Love even more Now. You silly, wonderful woman you, he said while squeezing me tighter. But what am I going to do now Julian? I asked wiping my tears. What do you mean? He asked. You continue to visit ole granny, that’s all I. But Julian, what if I forget something she has already mentioned? Or what if I change names? Or what if..she doesn’t finish her last question when Julian cuts in and says,” oh hunny don’t worry so much; granny will probably forget before you do..we both started laughing at that one. All you gotta do is write everything down after each visit if your that worried bout it, like in a journal or something. Yes..! A journal, oh Julian what a wonderful idea! I love you hunny! I love you more he said softly snuggling me closer. Well our visits only lasted a little over a year, granny Dee as I called her; I found out her real name was Dolores Vera cinnamon Shannon, died on a Friday night. Exactly eight months after our extravagant wedding, which granny insisted she pay for, as long as she was invited to the wedding. Of course your invited granny, I wouldn’t even get married without you there I told her. Like I believe that she said with a snicker, and we both laughed until we were crying. By that time she really was like a grandma to me. We were really close, so close in fact that everyone at the nursing home thought I was blood related, her long lost granddaughter. At every visit granny would pull out her worn out Bible and tell me; when I go to be with grandpa Jim I want to leave you this but on one condition. She looked me straight in the eyes, I want for you to visit me at the cemetery and I want you to chat, sing, and read the Bible to me and grandpa Jim, ok sweetie? Remember dear read my( your) Bible daily and keep God first and your life and marriage will both be worthwhile, ok dear? And I would tell her oh granny don’t talk like that! But she would insist; promise me Mary.. Promise me! Ok granny okay was Always my response to her Beautiful blue eyes. So here I am sitting in front of granny’s grave, reading my (her) Bible to her, and I can see that big Beautiful smile that she gave to me not so long ago, on my walk around the block, on that May Day. The day God gave me a very special grandma that nobody else wanted..! After singing Amazing Grace, my mothers, grandmothers, and granny’s favorite song.. The one I sang at all of their funerals, I opened my Bible to read one last passage and white turning the pages a piece of paper fell out along with a picture, a picture of granny’s special Christmas/Birthday party. I started to reminisce about the Christmas/Birthday decorations, the cake, and the smiles on granny’s and all her friends faces. They had Never seen such a party and Everyone had so much fun! The smell of pine cones and cinnamon treats were Everywhere! And let’s not forget the huge Christmas tree and of course Santa, which I thought was too much but Julian insisted! It was a picture of granny sitting on Santa ( Julian’s) lap. And when he asked her,” what do you want for your Christmas/Birthday present? Young lady”.. She looked him in the eyes and answered,” I want for you and MRS clause to live Happily Ever After.. And I want to spend my next birthday with “My Love!” Everyone cheered with tears in their eyes.. Including Santa.! I started getting dizzy again so I headed for home. And the minute I walked in the door I showed the piece of paper to Julian so I wouldn’t forget. Then I got woozy again, Julian helped me to the couch and brought me a glass of water. Thank you hunny maybe too much sun,now what is this? He started to read the paper.. Wow! He exclaimed.. What? I asked after taking another drink. It’s a safe deposit box note, maybe granny was a rich old lady who left us thousands of dollars.!!! Wouldn’t that be nice? He asked daydreaming. I playfully punched him on the shoulder, Julian, be serious. Ok okay let’s go and see what ole granny has for us. Probably old love letters, or maybe an old hope chest?.. Hmm both our minds were racing and we were guessing all the way over there. Maybe a beautiful China set, or quilted blankets made by granny’s loving hands? But when we found out we were both speechless and looked at each other with our eyes wide open and our mouths dropped open. My husband was the first to speak when he choked out.. I was only joking about the thousands.! When I finally found my voice I said,” I know hunny, but it’s not thousands.. It’s millions.! There was also a very special letter written to me from my very special granny.. Written with a shaky hand and a Loving Heart.. It reads.. My Dearest Mary, I know that Mary isn’t your real name and that your not really my flesh and blood granddaughter ( although you are my Heart and Soul Granddaughter) But you coming back again and again, visit after visit and getting close to me like a Real granddaughter meant more to me than you’ll ever know,( especially since I had no family.) I know I can never ever repay you for all you did for this lonely old lady; but maybe just maybe this little gift will help out a wonderful, loving newlywed couple on their new journey of life together. And I will Always and Forever hold dear and cherish the one and only special birthday party my Beautiful granddaughter and Santa threw for me, right before my passing. And yes grandpa Jim was there too, he also met me and took me by the hand on my last day here on earth, while I was clutching onto my special wedding picture the three of us in one hand and a picture of me and my beloved on the other. For this is how I fell asleep each night, at peace. Again.. Thank you.. Linda for keeping your promise to a crazy, lonely ole woman whom you barely even knew but came to know and love like your very own grandmother. I know you kept your promise because I watch over you Always. And I am watching the tears flowing now as Julian finishes reading these words to you as you could not finish reading as tears started flowing shortly after starting this letter and if you noticed they are also stained with my tears as well. Once more (because like I said I could never Thank you enough) Thank you Linda from the bottom of my Heart.. For Everything!!! Love.. HUGZ.. And kisses.. Granny Dee p.s. Extra HUGZ and Kisses to my Great Granddaughter.! Julian and I both looked at each other and laughed. Well needless to say after all the sun and excitement I was dizzy yet again and sick to my stomach. So Julian said straight to the doctors for you young princess and then home so that I can look after and spoil you! He had no argument from me. Once there the nurse asked, are you pregnant? No I answered, just too much sun, excitement and I think I might be catching a stomach bug. Oh ok she said but let’s take a urine sample any way. About an hour later doc walks in and asks,” so, you had an exciting day? Oh yes! Was my reply. Well I bet I can make it even more exciting. Oh Really?? Julian chimes in thinking he is flirting. Yes indeed.. Doc says smiling. It’s not the sun or the excitement or even a stomach bug that has you feeling this way.. He pauses.. Looks to me then to Julian and back to me again, but stays quiet.. Well what is it then? I finally ask.. Oh I thought you’d never ask he said laughing.. It’s the Baby.! BABY? We both say in unison. Yes.. Baby doc repeats. Julian’s eyes fill up with tears as do mine. Finally all choked up I say Thank you doctor thank you! Oh don’t thank me.. Thank hubby here.! And before you know it we are in each other’s arms crying and laughing tears of joy at the same time.! Thank you darling Thank you.!!! A couple of months later we found out the baby was going to be a girl. But that was no surprise because an Angel had already told us. And we named her; Dolores April Fern Apodaca. Dolores of course after Granny Dee , April,Fern so I didn’t have to lie and my middle name, and Apodaca, my new last name! And yes we give Dee Dee extra HUGZ and KISSES from her great granny Dee.. Oh and yes.. We lived HAPPILY EVER AFTER..!!! The End.. No make that.. The Beginning.!
All Rights Reserved- Linda Apodaca  11/20/15
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