I have learned to enjoy where I am on the way to where I am going.

Bed-time stories – I’ve read aplenty.

That little bit of dust – I simply looked away. The cobwebs were told to quiet down – for I was rocking my baby – and I knew babies didn’t keep.

The fingerprints on my window – a reminder a child spent some time with me.

The hugs may have been around my shoulders and the kisses were on my lips, but I noticed they have settled in my heart – a heart condition indeed.

My children knew how to dig in dirt and how to catch a few bugs.

Look out for those planters on the porch – for the little tree toad may jump out to surprise you.

Put your arms around me once again – if you really care.

For your love is the only way to protect me from bugs you think are there.

I learned in my one-room school house that ‘germ’ means life.

And in my garden I know how to grow things – and I watch as stuff ‘germinates!’

Science comes and science goes – but Grandma knows the creator.

Grandma knows what kind of dirt is good on this earth and the kind of dirt to ignore.

Our creator made bugs that know what to do.

Many a sneeze and cough came my way.

You may not believe I’ve drank from a school-house ladle.

I’ve eaten cake with candles that have been blown out with spit – and I always will.

I have lived with invisible bugs, and I know what they can and cannot do.

I have turned off the noise of this world – those who want to educate – those who make up silly rules.

Grandmothers have been known to share their wisdom.

Grandmothers know your beautiful face is too cute to cover up.

Those lungs of yours – she wants to know you are living and breathing the earth’s clean air – just like she did in her growing up years.

I am the old one now. Sunsets I’ve seen many. Ballgames – I’ve been there.

I know the time will come when I whisper my last “I love you” – for I have heard a few whispers from others.

There will be a day I give you a final embrace – and it will be a shock when you learn I have passed.

Do not worry about Grandma and the bugs you think you can bring her.

Bring her your smile and your laughter and flowers if you have any.

Pick some green beans – go sit on her porch and everybody help snip them.

Don’t wash the invisible bugs from the beans – just eat them.

You and your bugs do not have power to make a grandmother pass away.

You can make a difference, however, when you call or you visit.   

Do not wait to tell her she is loved. Do not withhold your kisses. Do not withhold your love.

If she bakes you a cake – you must blow out all your candles.

And if she hands you her cup – filled with home-made beverage – try it and tell her it really is good.

She knows what to do with the bugs you have left her. She appreciates your hugs as well as those bugs.

She knows someday the children will reminisce about her home – What will they say – she wonders.

Will it be the garden or the flower bed or the smell of food in the air? Or it could be tickles or popcorn or crazy writing of stories.

One thing she hopes her grandchildren will see –

Grandma is enjoying where she is – on the way to where she will one day be.

© Marlene K. Oxender 2020

Mom with Jayne. Grandma Lula Imm on the right – it appears it was popcorn night. Photo taken early 1950s.
Grandma Ola Parnham reading a book to Natalie back in 1985.
Grandma Vera Oxender at a birthday party in the 1970s. She was born in 1897 – so she was probably in her seventies when this photo was taken. Grandma’s daughter –
our Aunt Donna Beck – is holding her birthday cake.
Grandma Glatus Kimpel with her birthday cake – photo taken late 1950s or early 1960s. She was born in January of 1884 – which means she was celebrating her 80th birthday –
give or take a few years.

Grandma Patricia Oxender was born in 1928. She was probably 60 years old when her photo was taken with Natalie and Teri and her cake and candles and tulips. Teri was known for making the neighbor lady’s flowers disappear from her own yard and mysteriously show up at our house. Our neighbor, Mrs. Trott, knew there was a flower bandit in the neighborhood but smiled as the flowers were enjoyed by the children.