Facebook has this thing: Memories.
Everyday, if you choose, Facebook takes you through the past posts of the exact day you are on. For every year that you have had a Facebook account. You get to see how stupid you were, how immature you might have been, the funny memes that you forgot you posted, and the good times.
Facebook wore me down until I finally subscribed to the madness.
So now, every morning at 12:00 AM, I get a notification that I have memories to look at.
Thankfully, I have not been too embarrassed by anything that I have posted. There have been a few times I wondered what the fuck I was angry at that day, but they have been mainly chill posts.
I’m a chill person.
Today, though, made me realize something I had not thought about for a while.
I have posted a few times about my Grandma. One about how I had a freaky little event happen a few days after she passed away, and another how I accidentally caused Facebook to delete her old account.
I loved my Grandma (my mom’s mom). She wasn’t the perfect Grandma. She wasn’t exactly the one that spoiled you when you came over. She had a way that when she hugged you, it felt like she was trying to push you off of her (until a few years before she passed away, then she couldn’t hug you enough), and she didn’t understand my ways of speaking out when I felt something was wrong.
Grandma came from a time that the man ruled the house. The women were there to cook, clean, and raise the babies. Barefoot. Quietly.
So, I didn’t understand when I would say something defiant, or ask, “Why?” when my Grandpa said to do something and she would give me a look. A wide-eyed, confused look. I was supposed to just say yes, and do what I was told.
I didn’t always understand her, and she mostly never understood me.
But, I loved my Grandma.
I loved the way that she would ask a sex question and blow Momma’s mind.
I loved that she would call me sometimes to ask if it would be faster to dry the cat in the microwave.
“Yes, Grandma, it would be faster…but probably a lot messier. So why don’t you just use a towel like normal people?”
“That makes sense.”
I loved the way I would have to stop by her house once a day to make sure she hadn’t found some weird way to accidentally kill the cat.
I loved that every morning she made grits. Not the instant grits from the box. The real grits that you had to stand over the stove and stir until they were perfect. Every morning.
I loved that sometimes she would call and when I answered the phone, she wouldn’t talk. She would just do this little giggle. The kind of giggle that makes you wonder if she can’t believe she just fell down, or that she was happy in her successful attempt at killing a small child. She never killed a small child, by the way. At least not that I know of.
She had the softest hands. She smelled like gardenia lotion. She had a wig that she wore after her chemo treatments made her hair fall out…and she would act so meek and timid to take it off in front of people. But then she would walk out of the bathroom and throw it at you.
Sometimes, you could walk into her house in the morning and hear her talking to someone, only to find her having a full conversation with the Styrofoam head that she kept her wig on. And when you tried to sit in a certain seat…she fussed at you because that was the head’s seat and you were being rude.
She had this shy smile when you tried to take her picture. She didn’t really like the thought of pictures, but once you got her into it, she was a ham. She would try and fix the fuzz on her head that never quite grew back, but finally get frustrated and give up.
She loved God, and called me a heathen because I wouldn’t go to church with her.
She never swore, but sometimes she would slip. And she would giggle and cover her mouth. Then she would hold your hand and ask you to pray for her quickly.
“Please, Lord, don’t let Gramma go to Hell because she said damn.”
“Fine. Please, Lord, forgive Gramma for saying the least bad swear word in the English language.”
“You damn straight.”
And then she would slap my arm with her soft hand.
I am thankful that the morning she passed, it felt like she waited until Momma had broken the 2 week vigil of always being by her bedside before she went. We all knew that Momma wouldn’t have been able to handle watching her go.
She went quickly, and was gone before Momma could fight it.
I have always been devastated, but thankful.
Today, though, I had a memory.
I went through esthetics school before she passed. And apparently, on this day a few years back, I had a really great day in class. And like everyone in this social media age, I posted about it. I read through the comments that had been posted and the last one was posted by me:
“Thank you Gramma, I always try to do my best. I love you more.”
But, because her Facebook account is deleted now (because of me) I couldn’t see her comment. It was like I was talking to a ghost.
I realized that I forgot what my Grandma sounded like. I don’t remember how she used to say my name. I remember that she giggled, but I don’t remember what that giggle sounded like. I tried to picture her saying something or laughing, and it sounds like a generic senior citizen that you may hear on television. And while my Grandma didn’t have a very unique tone or quality to her voice (unless you count the southern accent), it was still my Grandma’s voice.
And I don’t remember what that sounds like anymore.
Only this time, there wasn’t a reassuring feeling that it would be okay. No weird, out of the blue, brush against my hand.
Just me realizing that sometimes it isn’t always fun to have your memories displayed in front of your face like that.