Saturday, February 2, 2013

Valentines....What my Grandmother Taught Me

With Valentine's Day fast approaching we're all probably wondering what to get that special person and what that special person might get for us.  And then, for some reason I started thinking about my grandmother--my Dad's mom.  Every year when I was little, my mother would take me to the local drugstore, and let me pick out a box of candy for her.  I always chose the heart shaped ones--you know.....the Russel Stover boxes that have been around forever.  

Each one sealed in factory cellophane.......each one chosen because I was absolutely sure she was going to love it.  Over the years,as I got older and life started changing, that tradition died.  I don't remember exactly when, but it just stopped.  I'm not sure if my mother continued to send them or not either.  

I got married, started my career, had children, and moved even farther away.  That closeness to my grandmother I enjoyed as a child became but a distant memory.  I did go to visit her when my first daughter was about one-year-old.  I wanted her to see her great-granddaughter.  It wasn't too many years after that that my grandmother passed away.  I flew to Dallas, for her funeral.

After the funeral we all went back to my grandmother's house.......the house she'd lived in for over 50-years.  It felt so strange to walk through the door again, knowing her sweet smiling face wouldn't be there to greet me.  My best friend, Margo, was with me.  After awhile we went to my grandmother's bedroom.......it was like walking into a time warp.  The same furniture I remembered as a little girl.......eerily quiet  now.......taking the resemblance of a shrine to my grandmother.

As we looked around the room, I saw her hair brush--the one with the silver plated back that I played with as a little girl.  I used to pretend I was a princess, because only a princess would use a silver brush to brush her hair.  Then for some reason I decided to look in my grandmother's closet.

I was absolutely dumbfounded.........there in one corner was a stack of heart shaped valentine candy boxes, each one still neatly sealed in their cellophane covers.  There must have been at least 10-15 of them!  My first thought was "why didn't she eat the chocolate?"  And, then.........why would she save those boxes!  No one could answer that............but as I've grown older, I think I know why.......it was a reminder of a sweet time in her life, when her little granddaughter spent time with her, and wanted to send something that made her happy.  I've come to appreciate those times so much now.......especially  being a grandmother myself now.  

What I learned from my grandmother is, that it's not how big or fancy a box of candy is.......it's not about how many roses are sent...........it's the quality of the time spent with someone.......it's the memories that are created that transcend all time and become the treasures we'll always carry with us.   It is knowing that you loved and were loved no matter what.  Be that treasure in someone's life and don't worry if the box is big enough, or fancy enough, or has the perfect chocolate in it.......do something that creates a memory that one day will come back to them and they will know beyond a shadow of a doubt they were loved.  Happy Valentine's Grandma! x0x0