Every year that passes I’m amazed at how fast life can fly by when you stop looking behind you and are only looking forward. I think that’s why parents often feel like time speeds up once they have kids, because they aren’t focusing on the past, just their kids future, and before you know it, little Johnny is giving you the middle finger and taking off with his alcoholic college friends. For me my child has been photography this past year or so. I digress.
Every year around this time May-June, I’m reminded that its important to look forward instead of back, because lets face it, how can you keep walking forward when you’re constantly looking back, without tripping and falling flat on your face? You cant.
4 years ago this week my family experienced one of the biggest losses ever. My grandma Figueroa (Mati,Mat,Tillie) succumbed to Hepatocellular Carcinoma, or Liver Cancer. I really thought she’d outlive us all, I think we all did actually. I still can’t believe its been this long since she’s been gone. I still miss her and think about her pretty much everyday. I used to think things like I wish I had asked her such and such, or had her show me how to make such and such dish (she was an amazing cook/baker). Its hard but the past year or so I’ve had to force myself to stop asking those questions and looking back with hurt that shes gone, but instead hope that in the future I can be more like her. Its hard letting go like that but honestly its the only way I can keep my head up and looking forward. She was the bedrock of my family (on my dad’s side), hosting family functions with her sister who lived next door, partying like one of the young ones, and most memorably disciplining any and all children that crossed her threshold. I admire who my grandma was and maybe one day I will be like her, I think looking up to her to try to fill her shoes has served as a good distraction from being sad about her not being here.
Grandma, We miss you. I miss hearing your laughter, eating your avena, and I even miss that bitchy face you used to give which I now incidentally give to others…DNA gone wild, right? I miss hearing you yell “pinche cabron!” from the kitchen and in an effort to honor your memory I whip out my spanish curse words whenever I’m cooking and something goes awry. I always enjoy wearing the jewelry you left behind because lets face it, our tastes were very similar and I always get compliments on your pieces. Grandma you taught me so much throughout my life and I hope that I can pass that wisdom on as a grandma to my own someday. I miss you and I love you.
My family has suffered so much because of cancer that I really do encourage you to donate your time, money, whatevers to Cancer.org and help find a cure so amazing people like my grandma and so many more aren’t snuffed out of this world by a painful cancer.