I have so many intentions. I had so many dreams and so many aspirations; life had it’s own path for me to follow.
I’ve been stuck in an abyss for a long time. I don’t know when I fell. I know when I was shown the edge... when my grandmother died. My family, the life I understood, fell apart when she left us all. I never knew a woman, whose body was unreliably frail, could hold so much power and strength. She held the family together. She was more than the glue. She was the foundation, the beams, the ropes, and the glue.
When she couldn’t fight any longer, the world crumbled down because of greed and jealousy.
I grew up knowing my grandparents in a way I believe none of their other grandchildren knew them. I remember going to day care when I was little, but I enjoyed being around my Grandmother and Grandfather so much, I asked my parents if I could stay with them after school instead. Everyone agreed. Everyone was happy. The love I felt around them steamed from their presence; calm, endlessly loving and positive. My grandfather and I spoke in our own version of Spanish. My grandmother and I would watch her shows together. They had a cat named Gato or Princess (depending on who was calling her.) Their back yard was my haven. Tall old trees, a swing, small amount of crops, a shed filled with creativity and tulips. A little field of tulips sculpted out of love and a sanctuary for imagination.
I spent years having endless adventures in the back yard. Many alone but companions were always ready to join the fun. I learned about caring for the earth through my grandfather; what you give her, you will receive in kind. I learned to see the beauty in every moment through my grandmother; though life my be unkind, it is up to you to find happiness.
As I grew, I learned my grandmother had suffered from polio when she was young and that was why she was always so weak and sick. My grandfather had grown up on a ranch in New Mexico and that’s why he grew corn, peppers, and an array of other produce in their tiny back yard.
They were his yearly love letter to my grandmother.
Tulips were her favorite flower and every year he would till the earth and plant tulips. Every year I grew up I looked forward to a quarter of their back yard being filled with an array of hearty colored cups sprouting from the tops of thick, solid green stems with angular leaves. They always attracted ladybugs, bumblebees, and butterflies; the perfect combination for a little girl dreaming of adventures in other lands. I would watch the clouds through the canopy of petals and befriend any animal who shared that space with me.
Every now and then, I would look up and see my Grandmother standing in the living room window, which looked out onto the Tulip Garden, smiling at what she saw. Though she was shadowed because of the lighting, she glowed with the endless amount of love and strength she contained.