BHS Blogress Report: 2020, Week 48 – Jane

Week 48 – Jane

My grandmother passed away on Monday, due to complications from COVID-19.

My Grandma, Jane Hamilton, was one of the strongest people I’ve ever known. “She’s tough as hell,” is the first thing I said to my mom when she was diagnosed positive two weeks ago. Grandma never let anyone boss her around and never held back what she thought. If she was pissed off at you, you knew it. As someone who got on her nerves more than once, I can confidently say that having Grandma pissed at you was a very scary thing.

But Grandma was also sweet and caring, and always happy to see or talk to me. I could go on for hours about anime, video games, cartoons, or whatever, and even if she didn’t exactly understand what I was talking about, she’d always listen and engage me about it. About fifteen years ago, I sent her a mix CD of anime songs, and she loved the “peppy music” so much that I ended up making and sending her about half a dozen more over the years. Not too many people’s grandmothers would willingly listen to Orange Range, but she was special like that.

If you need to know how strong and how feisty she was: at 95 years old, she never went to a nursing home. Hell, she wouldn’t even let us move her into an assisted living facility until about three years ago, she flat out refused. She watched Jeopardy! almost every night, right up to the end. Well into her 80s, she was out in her beloved gardens, planting flowers and filling her birdfeeders. She went out exactly the way she wanted to go: peacefully, in her sleep. She never diminished, never declined, never became anything less than herself. She was my Grandma to the last… and in a way, it’s almost typical that not even COVID could do her in, not really. A heart of gold and a steel will, that was Jane Hamilton.

I have so many memories of her, seemingly staying just the same over the years. I remember how she would pitch fits whenever someone tried to take her picture at family reunions, and when she’d finally give in she’d always end up giving the camera the same look: at first glance it was always a haughty, looking-down-the-nose, “Well, if I must” look, but there was always a smile underneath. I remember the way she would say “Now, Jackie…” to my mom in the same way every time we’d visit… to the point that I learned how to imitate her flawlessly. There was the time she came to see us and she insisted on hand-washing each and every one of the dozens of Ziploc bags my mom had kept hidden away unwashed in a drawer for who knows how long… she berated Mom for it the whole time. She was there visiting on the day years ago when we got the news that my cousin had been in a horrible car accident, and while my mom went frantic calling the rest of the family, she sat and watched Animaniacs with me, just to keep me from panicking too. I remember that day, and I never saw her lose her composure, not once. Because she was tough like that, tough as hell.

I have these and a thousand other memories I could write about, but that’s what I keep coming back to: tough as hell. Stubborn, and often ornery, but undeniably tough as hell. I’ll love her and remember her always.

Thanks for everything, Grandma. You’re amazing, always. Rest well.

-BHS

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3 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: BHS Blogress Report: 2020, Week 47 – A Natural Desire | Tasakeru
  2. Ruth Herman
    Nov 29, 2020 @ 06:29:16

    Sorry for your loss. We are all in this together and will be out of it together.
    Hope is a good thing for the future.

    Like

    Reply

  3. Trackback: BHS Blogress Report: 2020, Week 52 – Wasn’t All Bad | Tasakeru

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