It was just this past August that I blogged about my grandmother (Bannie's) 100th birthday. What a celebration it was. Then as quickly a flame burns out, Bannie passed away this past Friday. I never anticipated that day, given the decades I've had her in my life. So today as I attend her memorial service, I thought I'd share some memories of this most special woman with you.
So many friends have expressed such beautiful condolences that I am so grateful for. There is one in particular that I’d like to share that really resonated with me. My friend said, “some people’s light shines a little brighter…their spirits are just a little stronger…they have the “it” factor.”
That was it. That was my grandmother. She was just a bit different than us. Not because she was my grandmother, or Bannie, as my cousins and I called her. It’s because she was different. Special. Selfless. Caring. Charismatic. Different.
My grandmother lived a full life of 100 years. A Centurion. Born and raised in San Francisco, she saw a century of changes. Imagine, the first radio, telephone, automobile, television, computer. She loved San Francisco and never had a desire to live anywhere else. She welcomed the fog and dreaded the heat. Didn’t like the rain much either. San Francisco was her city. I remember her sharing beautiful memories such as outings to the the San Francisco World’s Fair, and the opening of the Golden Gate Bridge. It must have been amazing to watch the world change over 100 years.
Family was everything to Bannie. As the eldest child of 4, she took care of her siblings at a very young age. When she married my grandfather, she cared for her mother-in-law who lived with them. Then came her children, whom she doted on, and then her grandchildren, her elderly mother, her nieces & nephews. She even helped raise me. The list goes on. She gave and gave and gave. Cared for anyone that crossed her path.
“I’ll make you a cup of tea. I’ll make you anything.” Selfless, yes. Giving, yes. Loving, the best.
Bannie, our hearts are hurting as we try to imagine life without you. Although you’re not here with us anymore, your light is still shining brighter; your spirit is even stronger and will live in us forever. I love you. I miss you already.