As everyone knows, I had a two-hour massage before my transfer on Friday. I was so looking forward to this and it did not disappoint. I was wondering what in the world could take 2 hours to work out of my muscles, but there are still two knots that wouldn’t budge completely after an hour of work. After that hour, we decided to move onto other parts that needed some relaxing.
I asked the therapist if people fall asleep a lot on the table, and she said yes – all the time. I vowed not to do that – I was going to enjoy every minute.
I thought of all sorts of things on that table. I thought about the transfer, about Matthew, about B and the trip we’re planning. My thoughts began to be fleeting and I’d catch myself… falling asleep. I’d rip myself from my dozing state to be back in the moment. But there was one thing that came to mind at a particular moment and I let myself stay dreamy.
My grandmother and I were very close. We were good friends most of my life, but really enjoyed each other in my college and adult years. My grandparents struggled a lot with their relationship with my parents, and in turn, that struggle was unfortunately passed onto us kids. It wasn’t my grandparents’ fault. They tried very hard to be involved in our lives. I have hundreds of good memories with them – and I like to remind my sisters of these memories because their memories are more jaded by my parents.
As my massage therapist rubbed my arms, I was in an in-between state of being aware of what was going on, but letting my mind wander with direction. I remembered going to the circus with Grandma and Grandpa, my Grandpa dressing up as the Easter Bunny, us kids shouting for Santa Claus up the chimney with my grandparents laughing beside us, and sleep overs with my grandparents. I thought of my grandma dressing up as Ms. Hannigan from Annie and filming a scene of the movie with my older sister and me (Grandpa behind the camera), I thought of Christmases spent in the game room watching the adults play card games, and I thought of holiday dinners around the dining table that wasn’t big enough for everyone.
During holidays, the kids would sit in the kitchen at the kids’ table, which was fine by us. We’d go into the dining room and say grace with the entire family, load up our plates, and step 10 feet away to enjoy dinner together goofing with our cousins. Grandma insisted on having dessert at every meal (and why wouldn’t you????) and would dish up her famous red velvet cake (Waldorf Astoria Cake), angelfood cake with the lightest frosting ever (delish), or a black forest cake – all three of which are still favorites of mine. Again, we’d eat at the kids’ table and then help clear dishes afterwards.
But we never did dishes right away. Some people would get up and play games, some would go play the organ, and some (most) would sit around the dining room table and chat. That was when I would move from the kids’ table to the adult table. I’d cozy right up next to my grandma and she’d whisper sweet things to me. And she would always take ahold of my arm, roll up my sleeve, and gently rub the soft underside of my arm – from my wrist to my elbow – from my elbow to my wrist. Over and over again. I would feel dreamy – I loved it – and I would wish in my head that it would never end. Grandma did this throughout the entire conversation and as she would start to roll my sleeve back down (because it was time to open presents), I’d ask her for, “just another minute or two.”
She always said yes.
That’s what I thought about during my massage.
And about how much I miss her.