My grandmother had been ill for some time, making her understandably bitter, but her mind was still sharp until towards the end. Blind, ruptured intestines, arthritic hips, she was hardly happy. The last time I saw her alive she was distant, until I realized she hadn't know it was me. She wanted to tell me something and started to but got confused, her words and thoughts drifted off and then so did she. I told her I'd see her again soon and she nodded, but I was pretty sure she was too deeply asleep to realize it. I wanted to go visit her a few days later, but my mom (her daughter, or one of them rather) wanted to come into the city and see me. I felt it was a mistake and I was right. When we had lunch my mom told me that in a couple of days the whole family would gather to visit my grandmother. She also told me that my grandmother was in a lot of pain and now on morphine. But it wasn't enough to end the pain.
A relative of ours had considered giving an extra dose to end the pain permanently. It was what my grandma was begging for. The relative said the cops would figure out what happened and go to jail. It was than I realized I had to do it. It's a sad state of affairs when you plan to secretly murder your grandmother, no less sad that it's the right thing to do.
It wouldn't matter. We all got a call the next day to come over. It wouldn't be long now. It wasn't. None of us made it in time. I felt the regret of not going the day before. I certainly wasn't going to bring that up to my mother.
When I got to the house, her corpse—how strange to say that—looked like she was sleeping. I leave out the word “comfortably.” They said they couldn't keep her eyes closed. They said they couldn't close her mouth. They could have sent me in first. They could have made it so her children didn't have to see her in that state.
There was much comforting to do. The idea that she was at peace and no longer in pain seems more like a taunt than anything else. My father who can block out anything maintained a terror stricken air. He is not a young man. That this isn't as far off for him couldn't be suppressed. My normally joyous mother couldn't stop crying.
So we had mother’s day at my sisters. She talked of trivial issues. The kids were lost in their own worlds. Something needed to be said, to be done, but I didn't know what to do or what to say.
Goodbye grandma, happy mother’s day.