Saturday, January 9, 2010

Mi Abuela

Growing up I would go to my grandmas house to stay the night. My memories from then are sparse but they consist of cartoons, candy, picking up pecans, and playing in a huge freezer filled with worms and dirt. Oh and of course waking up to the smell of eggs and bacon. As my grandma aged and I with her she experienced the pain and fear of COPD and CHF. Both of which are no piece of cake and can be extremely scary. A lot of times the effect on her body were all she wanted to talk about. The last couple years of her life she spent a lot of time on the hospital unit I worked on. In a way this was a blessing because I worked a lot and was able to have some extra time with her. It was also a bit of a strain as she wanted me in her room at all times. Anyway I often wonder what it would be like for my girls to have meet her and to grow up with her in their lives. I know that even if she were alive they wouldn't get to see her because we live in Mexico. And for this reason she is not the reason for this post but I dedicate this post to mi Abuela Betty.
Mi Abuela Betty is the mother of 11 children and survived a miscarriages. That alone can tell you of her courage and strength. I know I have mentioned her before but I felt she deserved an entire post although she will never be able to read it or even know it exists. After all those children and almost 50 years of marriage her husband left her to be with the Lord. A lot of times in these situations the spouse who is left becomes depressed and dies shortly there after. But not Abuela Betty, she took his passing as a new era in her life. Im sure she misses him more than I will ever know unless I am some day in her shoes. But instead of letting it kill her she lives her life with umph. Her 11 children are spread all over Mexico and some are in Texas. She has gotten a visitors visa and she travels between all their houses and stays with them each from time to time. She did this for quite a few years and now still does from time to time. For the most part she stays at her house in El Valle. Going out to see Bis Abuela is a treat for my girls, Joslin loves to cuddle with her and Alana can always expect some kind of treat. Abuela Betty is far from what I expected from her. My husband always told me great stories about her and how much fun she was but I expected that this was how she was before, when he was young, and when her love still lived. But she has been a shining light for me when times here get dark. Every since the first day I meet her the day before our wedding I knew we would get a long.
She walked into the church where we had just finished rehearsal and she cried at the site of her grandson. And I don't mean shameful tears I mean she balled and hugged him so tight. I get choked up every time I remember this day. She then hugged me as tight and talked to me. Although at the time I knew not a lick of Spanish I knew she was thanking me for loving him. The rest of the night she stayed close and watched us with tearful eyes. Every since I moved here she has made every effort to be able to communicate with me. She slows her speech and uses hand gestures and sometimes will even get up and point things out. To be honest few people go to the lengths she does to help me understand. And if they do there is a show of obvious frustration on their faces. But she always stays calm and has a peaceful smile on her face. She also always seems to know when I'm hungry or frustrated. For example when the Tias are driving me mad with instructions on how to raise my children she always just sits and grins at me with a twinkle in her eye. And a lot of times later explains to me that what I'm doing is ok. She loves to feed us and if we dont stay to eat that is when she looks sad. I hate to see this so now we always plan to be there however long it takes for us to make us something to eat. Issac and his sister were their grandparents favorites and this is still obvious to this day. She dotes on us more than she does the others and I can plainly see this. Abuela never lets us leave empty handed, this last time she looked through her cupboard and gave us mac and cheese and a can of corn. Unlike the rest of the family she always remembers to come through when she says she will do something. For example one of Issacs cousins sends hand me down clothing out to El Valle for the baby. We leave it out there till shes actually big enough for it. I have been asking his aunts and cousins who live there for some time now for the one bag that was left. Finally I told Abuela what I was needing and she said she would find it. The last time we were there I asked one of his cousins if anyone had found and and she went with me to look for it. Finally after not finding it I asked Abuela and she had already had it out for me sitting beside her bed. She of course at that time pored it out on her bed and we had fun just us two going through it and gooing and gawing over the cute baby stuff. I think I could go on with more stories of how she has come through for us but I will leave it at this. I am so thankful for her in our lives and she has made my life in Mexico so much brighter.


  1. Awwwww! Abuela Betty sounds wonderful. What a great blessing for your girls to have such a loving great-grandmother.

  2. I totally know what you mean about Abuelas. Both yours and your adopted. I miss my abuela and miss my kids grandmothers. They are one of the very best parts of life. I love carrying on traditions of my grandmother. I feel closer to her.