This is not a sad post. I promise.
My Grandma passed away last month. This is not a sad post because she lived a very full life, exactly the way she wanted to live it (much to her family’s dismay, at times). In her 84 years she was married twice (first to my Grandpa, the second many years after he passed), four children, eleven grandchildren, fourteen great-grandchildren and one great-great-granddaughter.
She was tiny but loud, and opinionated in ways that could make you cringe at times, but she was funny as hell and there was always a good time to be had when the family got together. She had a large circle of friends, kept a regular lunch routine that got her out of the house every day during the week (even after she should have stopped driving), crocheted those stripe-y zigzag afghans that were coveted by everyone, and she loved her paperback romance novels.
Throughout the years I watched countless numbers of romances grace the end table next to her recliner. She was my introduction to the romance genre. When I would spend the night at my grandparents’ house I was allowed to go into the living room and turn on Saturday morning cartoons to keep myself entertained until they woke up. (I was a much earlier riser than either of them.) I knew at an early age what those books were, and I would always try to sneak peeks inside the racy covers.
My Grandpa, who slept on the couch for as long as I could remember, would invariably scare the bejeesus out of my by grumbling “Put that down, you’re too young for that crap.” when I thought he was fast asleep. (He was super good at playing ‘possum.)
But the love of romance was planted, and for that as well as the MANY other things I learned from her, I am grateful to have called her my Grandma.