My grandfathers both passed the Christmas of 1985, the year before I was born the April 1986. Therefore, of course, I never knew either of them..or what it was like to have a “grandpa”. The grandmother I did know passed away in 2004, week and a half before my sophomore year of college. Since then, I’ve always said without her wisdom and guidance I’ve been free-falling through my life. Trying insane stunts, getting arrested, racking up debt and practicing a lot of self loathing based on full absorption of others’ opinion of me.
I’ve felt like for awhile it just may always be that way. My parents are young..text messaging, Blackberry users, who DVR their favorite shows and wear the latest designs. Responsible? Absolutely and without question. Young? Indeed. I don’t find them lacking in knowledge, my fathers passion for accounting, Greek and Roman mythology and economics probably makes him the most intelligent person I know. My mother is more domestic and earthy, an artist skilled at every form from pottery to painting to pencil. She’s never been the type to speak to me much about…anything, especially life advice. I’ve had to either figure it out on my own or wait to hear some skewed version from a peer who was trying to make sense of their parents understanding themselves.
Enter my grandmother.
Always the voice of instruction and reason. Patient with my childhood hyper-activity and adolescent misunderstandings. My youthful frustration with boys, education and acne. Forthright with the importance of Jesus, and never ever temperamental. And since her death, to now the age of 24 I’ve just been walking through life without a plan just seeing where men, money and friends take me or how all three could betray me.
And yesterday, I met someone. Someone named Gloria. During and after speaking to Gloria I realized that I’ve had this outer experience only twice before in my life. The moment that I was told my grandmother died and when my name was called to accept my Bachelors degree. It’s a feeling that I’m not sure if my heart has stopped beating..but I’m aware that I’m having difficulty breathing. Despite the lack of air, I’m not panicked. It’s not the fear that one experiences when the brain registers that the person is undergoing suffocation, but an almost high so powerful that its the euphoria described that one feels when they’re near dead from drowning. She would touch my hand and my spine went numb, yet a tingle of electricity would go down the back of my legs making me almost certain that they would give out beneath me. She said things to me that God has been trying to get through to me but with the absence of a grandparent, she was the right vessel. I think of all that was said, and my heartbeat slows. I’m aware of it now. It calms me. The wild, erratic, angry behavior I’ve displayed from years of feeling displaced, I finally realize I’m not displaced anymore.
Maybe I really am right where I should be in life.
There is no concept of time..or of age. Neither matter because its already planned out according to a clock I can’t control. He’s working on it, if He hasn’t worked it out already. I’m so immersed in the pains of comparison of where I should be and what I should be doing and what I should have compared to others that of course I’m resentful. There is no concept of time..nor of age. There isn’t a proper age to graduate college, or buy a house or own your first car or have your first baby. These time restraints are developed not by God, but by that of society. Wrinkle creams and the market towards the prevention of aging hasn’t been praised that with age comes wisdom, but that with age comes ugly. In which, is entirely untrue. For all the wisdom that’s been bestowed upon me by those who only possess wrinkles, its just shown me that with age comes power. With age comes certainty and a beauty that none of us can draw on. She said more than once, “the more you look in the mirror the ugliest you become..we’re already blessed.” She’s right. I don’t possess my own house, or car and my checking account doesn’t have a comma, but it doesn’t take away from the beauty of who I am as a person. And I’ve worried, incessantly, over sunscreen and wrinkle cream serums and turning 25 in the Spring…and for what you ask? Because I don’t have “the” car, house, husband, baby, dog, walk-in closet, you-name-it. The bitterness is what’s made me ugly, and sitting in the mirror constantly agonizing over it all and how to create it from thin air. I’m 24, and I needed someone who’s lived to 74 to tell me that wrinkles aren’t the problem, getting ugly..not physically, but making your heart ugly is all that matters. That’s what you prevent. When people are mean, you don’t return the same “sentiment”, and you don’t hold a scoring board and measure your life up to others..AT ALL.
At the end of the day, you don’t do these things because He’s working on it, if not has worked out the plan for you already. Therefore there is no concept of time. Time and age don’t matter.