Its been over a month since Ive published a blog. Not sure why other than I haven’t felt like it. I’ve written a few. Just didn’t publish them. Sometimes life is endlessly inspiring and the words flow out. Sometimes it’s not. Halfway, almost, through 2016. I cannot believe it. Crazy how fast time flies. I just returned from a trip to visit my grandmother for her 90th Birthday. She said to me…..”90 years is a lot of years that went by really really fast.” Her father died in a work accident when she was 5 years old. Her mother died of cancer when my grandmother was 19. She’s been an orphan since the age of 19. Her husband died over a decade ago of cancer. And her son died almost 10 years ago in a motorcycle accident. She has seen and lived through things that could not have been easy. And when I left the party I was acutely aware that I may not see her again. A woman who helped raise me.
I got to spend some very funny, quality time with my Mom and brother on the trip. We missed my sister. And its funny how family works. I’ve been married ALMOST as long as I wasn’t married. It’ll be 19 years for us next month. I added Nugent to my last name 19 years ago. And we have 2 amazing children. And Im 43 years old and I go somewhere with my Mom and brother and we bicker like we are 13 years old with mom having to fuss at us. You can marry. Have kids of your own. A home, a life, a mortgage, and not often see those people you lived with the first 18 years of your life but you come together and you know you are them. Family began with them. The Cannons and Ellis’ and my grandparents and my Mom and Dad and my brother and sister.
I also got to visit with my cousins. I am the oldest grandkid by quite a few years but the next born was my cousin. He’s the oldest cousin on that side and is married with his own beautiful family now. We got to talk for a few hours and it was nice. My grandmother was sitting on the couch and he was next to her and I was next to him. He was talking and moved his hand a certain way and I noticed it for some reason. I looked at my grandmother’s hand and realized she moves her hands that way. And I move my hands that way.
My brother and I were able to talk a bit about my Dad. The three of us all handled his death so differently. Each in our own, needed way. We both talked about how it makes us sad that he feels so far away. Like a person we just used to know a long time ago. That first year after he died I could smell him, I could hear him, when the phone rang I honestly had 3 solid seconds I thought it might BE him. And as the years have passed he has faded. And that makes me so very sad. It makes me cry now. I cant remember his voice. It bothers me so much. Because I feel like if it all goes away then so does he. 53 is too young to die. And 10 years is too long.
So I couldn’t quite figure out why my cousin’s hand movement caught my attention and drew me to my grandmother’s hands. And then to realize I move my hands that same way. So alone by the pool in a hotel in Nevada I looked at my hands. And there he was. My Dad moved his hands that way too. And like stumbling across a photo of an old boyfriend or hearing a song from a moment that meant so much- there he was. And I smiled because I know he can never completely fade away. Family.