365 Grateful blog

Guest Post - Sarah Davies - Nanna

Hailey Bartholomew - Sunday, November 06, 2011

This week we have a blog from our newest guest blogger Sarah Davies.  Enjoy!   


I’ve been reflecting deeply this week just gone and thought it would be an apt time to share these thoughts. Possibly because, sometimes things weigh too heavy on the heart that they are better shared, but also possibly because some lessons are so beautifully learnt that they are best not kept to oneself. This week just gone has been a ying and yang of both beautiful lessons and heavy loads.

On Monday my Nanna passed away.  She was 90 years, six months and 16 days old when she left us and she was a real treat. She raised 7 children on her own, in poverty, with her kitchen table always open to any extra’s in need of a feed. She was always cheeky and funny and laughing and singing and smiling. I can’t count the times I’d turn her way as a child and she would quickly and randomly pop out her false teeth and give me a larrikins gummy smile, just to see me fall into a fit of laughter.

She always smelt of sunlight soap and lavender talc and soft skin. She always kissed on the lips and held us there just long enough to show us how deeply we were loved by her. When I came to be a teenager I got a little self conscious of the “Nanna pash” and would pull away at a peck. If I could go back, I’d tell my younger self not to be silly, for now these tender kisses will be deeply missed.

On Friday, we left for the funeral in a rush, three kids under four, make us always late. I sat up the back with my baby and watched my uncles and aunts jump out of their seats and dance around like absolute fools to happy music, with huge smiles and even bigger tears running down everyone’s cheeks. They clapped and hooted and swirled together, as it was Nanna’s wish that we celebrate and have a party, so they gave her just that. I could almost feel her beside me, rolling her thumbs over and over in interwoven hands, chuckling…feet tapping. She would have loved it.

I realised this week that life is only a number of days. Nanna’s days were 33’073 in total. It doesn’t seem so long when I look at it that way. I realised that worrying about dishes doesn’t matter. That no one remembers you for your clean floors. I realised that my sense of humour will get me through any burden life tries to lump on me.  So instead of getting grumpy or frustrated, or even bogged down in the housework, I’m going to try to laugh it off more. I realised that tender kisses can never be too long, so I will kiss my boys more and let them feel my skin and smell me, as they’ll remember me. For life really is so very short even if I’m lucky enough to live it long and fully.

I am grateful for my grief for it makes me feel my feet on the earth and know that I am planted in a life that must be lived and flourished. I am grateful for so many tears reminding me that I am loved and worthy of love. I am grateful to be reminded that one day I will be grieved by those I leave behind.  My hope, with all that I am, is that on that day, my children will jump from their seats and dance like crazy people, drunk on sorrow and joy combined, knowing I am happy and at peace with the love and legacy I leave behind. I’m so very grateful for this lesson, thanks to Nanna!

This was her laugh,

This was her humour,