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Sunday, March 15, 2009

My Family


By-Stephani Hecht



Yesterday I had to go to a wedding shower for my cousin’s fiancé. Now, I’m not a big fan of showers, but I would do anything for Mike. Even play cheesy games, fawn over gifts and make nice with others. The one huge silver lining is I got to get together with the females from my family.

My family is close. Most of us live within blocks of each other and it’s been that way for as long as I can remember. My best friends growing up were my cousins and now our kids are best friends. I know that no matter what, my family will be there for me.

The “family” started with four sisters. Vera was the oldest, followed by Lonnie Kay, Donna and then , my mother, Barb. Grandpa worked at the railroad until he passed away when my mother was still young. Grandma never faltered, she took on housecleaning jobs and struggled to raise four girls on her own. She did a damn good job too. Even today she is the strength that holds our family together.

As the sisters grew up and had children, our family grew and grew and grew. I still remember that horrible day Grandma had a heart attack and we almost lost her. Every family member dropped everything and hurried to the hospital. As she was rushed into emergency surgery we gathered in a large waiting room. We huddled together, crying and trying to lend each other support. Finally, the surgeon came in.

“Who’s with Jane?” he asked.

The entire waiting room responded, “We are.”

The expression on the doctor’s face was priceless as he looked over all of us. It must not be everyday that a family fills up the entire waiting room. What he didn’t know was we had left all the youngest at home, so there were even more of us. But then he didn’t understand our family. Of course we would be there for Grandma. How could we not be? She’s the one who sewed our dance costumes. The one who took us out shopping and to lunch. The one who dried our tears when we didn’t make the cheerleading squad.

Years ago, the youngest generation dubbed her, Great-Grandma-Golden-Girl. She still has that unfortunate name and she beams whenever she hears it. She continues to try to take care of us, even as we step forward to take care of her. My son calls her every night to check up on her, the guys always make sure her cable and internet is hooked up, and my aunt takes her grocery shopping every week.

She deserves all the special attention. Heck, she should be treated like a queen. She earned that right a long time ago, because no one is more special than Great-Grandma-Golden-Girl.

3 comments:

Patti Shenberger said...

Aw, I want a Grandma Golden Girl.

Lynn said...

Very nice. I would love to live in a place like that. When we lived in Ohio, it was that way but once we got to Nevada it was different.

Now my brother went to Idaho because his allergies were killing him here. Within a block is his mother-in-law, within a mile is his sister-in-law and her family and within 5 miles is our Dad. He's the closest any of us ever came to having the family right there since we moved west.

There are days I really, really miss it. Families by and large are scattered all over the place and IMHO that is not good. I've always wanted to be a rich and famous author so that I could buy a plot of land where I could build a house for each of my treasured family.

Maybe some day.

Lynn

Jambrea said...

What a great story. I'm sad that I don't have a strong family relationship. I plan on changing that for my son. He already thinks of one Grandma's home as HIS second home. I think family is VERY important and I'm happy you have such a strong bond with yours!

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