I’m sitting here on the laptop, with a gentle breeze making it cool enough for me to enjoy a mug of tea, trying to think of my earliest memory of my nanna (Grandmother).
I had been meaning to write a letter to her for over a year now. Perhaps I never got down to it because I simply procrastinated but I think a more accurate reason for the time wasted is a fear of not managing to put to words everything I wanted to say and express. But i decided to give it a try anyway!
There’s a photo somewhere of her holding me, when I was a fragile baby just a few days old, at our flat in Msida... and it made me think. It made me think of all the things she did for the whole family that went unnoticed; the things she sacrificed and gave up to keep the peace; the time she invested in baking, cooking, sewing and knitting just to make a person or two feel loved; and the many moments she lived, both lovely and difficult, that went by without being photographed in this same idealistic way.
I realised there are so many things I love about her yet so few times I let her know about them.
I love it when she says stories about the past, in a ‘let-me-share-and-teach-you-what-I’ve-been-through’ way rather than in a‘it-was-such-a-better-time’ way. Honestly, i enjoy hearing about how she used to escape to the shelter with her siblings when they heard the sounds of German bombers. Or how her jaw-dropping voice was discovered when she was singing at home with her sister. And even how she gave up singing in Operas to be with my nannu (who decided he wanted to marry her as soon as he saw her!). These, along with the many other stories she frequently tells, will always be remembered and will somehow always manage to bring a smile to my face.
*Second mug of tea is now joining me xD*
Many times when I come back from Bidnija or Xemxija I think about what was said at our crazy family gatherings that day. There’s so much I learn about everyone by just sitting and observing – and I honestly think it’s one of the best passtimes ever!
There’s so much more I learnt about Nanna apart from how well she can bake and cook (mmm who doesn’t love her cakes, her ‘ross il-forn’, her cookies and her pies?!).
I learnt that Nanna can be the hero when someone needs comfort, the compassionate one when someone to cry with is needed and the encourager who shouts praises and blows trumpets for all to hear when someone’s down! You can be sure that if you’ve achieved or done something that you want everyone to know about, telling Nanna is the wisest thing to do! And that’s why we love her...be honest! We think she’s great and we love it when she laughs, we love it when she sings while she cooks, and we love it when she asks us ‘to be an angel’.
I appreciate the fact that she takes interest in the little things that go on in my life. She knows about the friends I have, the things I’m studying, the shows I’m taking part in, the piano pieces I’m playing and the songs that I’m writing! *fuzzy feeling inside because I feel really loved and lucky* Many Nanna’s are sweet and interested but tend to forget things but my Nanna remembers every little detail and notices even when I buy a new dress or bag and quickly compliments, easily making my day!
Some people think their Nannas are close-minded or not understanding, but something I love about my Nanna is that she’s ready to pour out her love to anyone that comes her way (and by that I mean she’s ready to feed you, sit with you, eat with you, chat with you and perhaps even play a game of scrabble with you– what more could you ask for? =D)
Not only is she very open minded but she’s even up for a bit of harmless vandalism every now and again. Who could resist writing their initials on the bathroom door of the oldest restaurant in Europe on their 80th birthday? (That will forever be the funniest moment we’ll remember!)
Just a few days ago she told me to be careful with the internet; to be careful with what I expose to the whole world on Facebook, blogs and MSN conversations *yes she’s that updated! xD* and I guess I could be going against her wishes by posting this but I just want to show how I appreciate her!
Nanna, if there’s one thing I’d like to tell you with this letter/blog, it’s that you are truly inspirational and a huge part of my life (and I believe all my cousins, aunts and uncles would strongly agree). Thank you for loving us all even when nobody appreciates or sees all the hard work you put into everything! Thank you for being fair with us all! Thank you for continuing to love us even if you do not agree with everything we do!
So be encouraged! You’re impacting a lot of lives! I hope you can go back to this when you’re having a bad day and allow it to cheer you up!
Going back to the photo I mentioned in the beginning, I think this quote seems to sum it all up!
“Grandmas hold our tiny hands for just a little while, but our hearts forever.”
Just to add some fun to the blog...here’s what some people think about Nannas and some fun quotes about them!
* They both spoil me and may worry needlessly about the stuff I do but I love them to bits!!
* They're amazing :) make great chocolate cakes and r so much fun to spend time with!
*A grandmother is a babysitter who watches the kids instead of the television.
*If your baby is "beautiful and perfect, never cries or fusses, sleeps on schedule and burps on demand, an angel all the time," you're the grandma.
-- Teresa Bloomingdale
*My grandkids believe I'm the oldest thing in the world. And after two or three hours with them, I believe it, too ~ Gene Perret
*What a bargain grandchildren are! I give them my loose change, and they give me a million dollars' worth of pleasure ~ Gene Perret
Now i’m seriously ending this...(of real!)
“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels not demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us form the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans 8:38-39