Everyone say hello to my Grandma Rose here with my folks. I want to share with you all how this Saturday, in less than an hour, Grandma taught me what real beauty is about. Granny is the best teacher that anyone could know, and she will be 97 in October. Rose is now bed ridden in the hospital because of a slew of health issues, but somehow her spirit does not know that because she can still light up a room better than anyone I know. More on that in a bit.
This weekend was pretty intense for me as in one day literally back-to-back, I attended a funeral for one of my uncle’s who passed away, visited my Grandma Rose at the Convalescent hospital, and saw baby pictures of grandma’s latest great grand-children. Yes folks, I got the entire life cycle in mere hours.
But, more about what my amazing Grandma taught me about beauty…
Grandma Rose is one of my sheroes, and you will quickly see why. This woman has 10 children (9 girls and 1 boy), 38 grandchildren, and to date about 32 great-grandchildren (I say about only because I lose track as my brain gets overwhelmed sometimes with the enormousity of my family.) Besides being a mother to a football team, she was a pharmacist, a high school teacher, and later on a politico in her home province in the Philippines. Yeah, she’s beyond super woman, and you get a glimpse as to where some of my need to be perfect girl came to play.
Everyone Loves Grandma Rose
But even more amazing than her accomplishments is the vibrant spirit that lives inside her. Everyone that has ever met my grandmother loves her because she is the kind of person that everyone wants to be around because she makes you feel special, at ease, and happy. Grandma is quite the comedian too. She’s like laughing gas. As an example, one of my cousins recently had this conversation with her:
...We spend more time making our box look prettier instead of filling that box with beautiful, loving, vibrant spirit. Why? ...
“Did you have many boyfriends when you were younger grandma?”
“Oh yes of course, I had very many. Plenty.”
“So, why did you pick grandpa then?”
She shakes her head laughing, “I have no idea…I'm so pretty. I had so many boyfriends.”
There is no way you can be or stay depressed, sad, angry, or negative in any way when you’re around my Grandma Rose. If I could bottle up her spirit and sell it, I’d be on QVC faster than you could get your happy meal at the drive through.
Come give Grandma a hug
Grandma Rose’s warmth is combined with the fact that she likes to kiss and hug everyone. She likes to touch people on the arm when they speak. She’ll hold your hand as she leads you to the buffet at a picnic. She’ll reach her hands out to you because she wants you to be closer so she can hear you. At the convalescent hospital, the staff considers her as one nurse put it, “she’s just the cutest thing.”
And that is a huge testament to Grandma because in that hospital almost everyone there is at the end of their days mostly from old age, and what was hard for me emotionally was to see all these people literally wasting away. You can even see that the spirit has left their eyes already, because there is something very lonely and depressing about spending the end of your life in a cold hospital. But again, that’s if you let it. This is where Grandma shows us different.
Grandma just won’t die
Physically, as I mentioned, Grandma Rose is pretty much bed ridden and because of that her legs look like little twigs. She can go out and about in the hospital in her wheelchair. She has cataracts and has a hard time seeing, and she has diabetes. She has also lost a good portion of her hearing which is why she talks really loud. She has so many physical ailments that most people would feel defeated but not my Rose.
There’s an on-going joke about my Grandma in that she just won’t die. There have been 3 situations where the doctors have pretty much told the family that she is a goner so go get her affairs in order now. People have flown in from other countries to say their goodbyes, and when she was supposed to be dead, somehow Granny will do a switcheroo and bam! She’s alive and kicking.
Simultaneously it is flabbergasting and hysterical. I’ll believe Grandma’s dead when she’s in her casket, but if Grandma has her way, that won’t be for a long time because she just loves living so much. This is one of my aspirations, to be like my Grandmother and continue to be so filled with joy and love of life that the state of my physical body will not hinder that spirit. You work with what you got versus trying to make what you got work for you. That goes back to spirit-based thinking versus, ego-based thinking, and something I wanted to share with all of you.
You are far more than a body
We get so engrossed in our “container”; how it looks, how much it weighs, how much it’s flawed, and on and on, that we forget that the body is really only one small part of our totality. It’s one thing to want to look good and take care of yourself, but it’s a whole other thing to let your body ruin your day, your attitude about yourself, or steal joy from you just because you don’t like the way it looks or because you don’t look pretty like the girls in the magazines or what you think other people consider attractive.
What good is a pretty box if it’s filled with bitterness, anger, and un-love? We spend more time making our box look prettier instead of filling that box with beautiful, loving, vibrant spirit. Why? People are far more attracted to energy than packaging, and yet, so many of us, myself included, get dellusioned into giving more power to our packaging than what kind of energy we put out into the world. Would you rather be just a pretty box or be the light in someone's universe?
As I sat next to my grandmother on her bed holding her hand, all I could see was this vibrant spirit that just rejects, absolutely refuses, to let her body get in the way of her love of life and her feelings of joy. At that moment, I got very clear about how much time and energy I continue to spend on senseless things that do more to hinder my spirit than help it. Indeed, I have spent many years already healing much of the turmoil I had been carrying around, but the visit with Grandma brought me to a new level, a higher more expansive level. It was like one of those moments in a cartoon where a coconut hits you on the head and all of a sudden you see the light.
I saw the light through my grandmother’s light. She invited me to her birthday because it’s her favorite day of the year, a sentiment I share with my grandma. “It will be a great celebration,” she beamed. Indeed it will be because Grandma Rose makes everyone feel like a festivity, and I am one lucky granddaughter!