In an effort to reinvent myself, I have begun following some amazing writers all over the internet. One of my favorites is Lisa-Jo Baker. She came up with Five Minute Friday, a place for bloggers to write, free-style, for five minutes about the word of the week. Check it out here
Here is my first:
I was not raised to be particularly religious. We prayed before meals and at bedtime but we only went to church so that my parents could please my grandmother. My father said it was his gift to his mother.
I could write pages about my grandmother. She was a lady always. She was the person in my life who provided a warm hug and constant acceptance. When I think of my grandmother, words come to me – Scrabble, pool, church, Coors Lite, laugh.
When I got older and could drive myself, I went to church with her, and my grandfather, too. But mostly it was she and I.
There was peace in church, serenity. She taught me in her quiet way. This is how we pray, this is how we worship and thank God for all our blessings.
We sat in the back pew, like we were rebels, didn’t want to be too close to the alter. I never asked her why. I wish I had.
On more than one occasion I remember my grandmother crying in church. She said the hymns reminded her of home, of her mother, her sisters. I thought I understood. I didn’t. Not until my grandmother died.
I sat in the pew at the funeral – not the back pew – family sits in front. We sang Amazing Grace. I knew she had chosen that hymn but I was not prepared, the words choked me. Tears coursed down my face, crying for my grandmother, my refuge. She was the one who would slip me a folded bill or two as I headed back to school. She wanted me to grow up strong but she let me be soft, only with her.
Now, I go to church, I am a regular. I don’t sit in the back with my kids, we sit in the middle. But there are days, my youngest looks to me and asks me, “Mom, are you crying?” And I tell her, I am thinking of my Gram.