A LETTER TO MY GRANDDAUGHTER
My Darling Granddaughter Nora,
I am your grandmother. I anticipated your entry into the world with such excitement. I was so proud that I was your grandmother. I told anyone that would listen to me that I was going to be your grandmother. I made plans—baking and cooking together, reading books to you, sharing pictures and events of your mother when she was a little girl, taking you to the zoo, gardening. I could hardly wait to show you the joys of finding an earthworm, or eating fresh peas, or picking snapdragons, or tasting a chocolate chip cookie right out of the oven.
I already knew you would be a girl. Even though your mother didn’t want me to overdo on pink, I couldn’t help myself. I found you such cute outfits. Even Dr. Suess had a pink outfit that seemed to be meant for you. I could hardly wait to hold you in my arms. I have loved you from the first moment I first heard about you.
My dreams of being with you, of being your grandmother, were shattered when we got the news that you did not have a heartbeat. In those moments Nora, my heart broke into so many pieces. Not only for you, but for your mom and dad, your aunts and uncles, cousins, and for your grandparents who would never get a chance to know you. I couldn’t imagine NOT doing all the wonderful things of grandmotherhood with you.
It was such love and despair that I felt when I finally got to hold you. I loved you from the first twinkle in your parents’ eyes, but I fell in love with you the moment you were in my arms. You were a beautiful baby—the prettiest I have ever seen (just don’t let your Mom or Aunt Kristi know that). If I think hard enough, I can still imagine you in my arms. You had such cute chubby cheeks and button nose, and full lips. You would have been a heartbreaker!
I have been reading your mother’s blog. She writes about you all the time. She loves you so much. She also has links to other blogs from hers. It makes me so sad to read about the pain these parents are going through. But dear Nora, people don’t realize the depth of pain that I as your grandmother, or Bob as your grandfather, have gone through. We as extended family members seem to be the forgotten ones. I may not have given birth to you, my little Nora, but I did give birth to your mother. I have felt every nuance of sadness that each of my family members has endured; have felt it in every fiber of my being. (I really never knew what that meant until now.) So when well-meaning people say that we as grandparents don’t really understand what they are going through, they are sadly mistaken.
Not a moment in a day goes by, Nora, that I don’t think of you. You have left your imprint on my heart, and it will be there forever.