Friday, January 22, 2010

What I Found

Hi Loves,

So I was cleaning out my storage lately, as since I moved I can store stuff here at my place. I decided to throw out a bunch of pictures as well as old letters and things like that. It is a new year, and I strongly believe in the saying that you can't make room for new things to come in your life if you are still holding on to people and memories from the past. So in a nutshell, I've decided to toss things from people I am no longer in touch with and keep letters from my family and close friends.

So I was going through a box of pictures, and in it, I found a picture with my Oma (Austrian grandma) and I in front of Zauner, a famous Austrian confectionary. That picture is also real special to me because I was in my traditional Austrian dress, a Dirndl kleid that she bought for me. I still have it in my closet.

I forgot I had pictures of her and I together. Oma was and is someone I love and miss very much. She had a bittersweet ending because she died instantly of a heart attack in 2006. It was bitter because she was only 71, seemed healthy, and we thought she had years ahead of her.

On the other hand, it was sweet because she lost my grandpa, aka the love of her life 21 years earlier. Two weeks before she passed she said that if she were going to die that she would want to go in the same manner that her husband did. She got her wish, as she died instantly of a heart attack like he did. They are buried together. I can't be mad at that. I respect that, and finally she can be with him.

She was the one that got me in touch with my cultural side. She made sure I learned German and only spoke to me in German. She was a staunchly proud Austrian. I love learning foreign languages. I equate someone helping me learn another language to love. When others open up and explain foreign language concepts, it brings me back to my aunt and grandma lovingly help me learn German. After German I moved on to Spanish. Latinos/Hispanics are generally very passionate and kind, so learning Spanish has also been a wonderful experience.

She told me she wanted me to find true love, and made me promise I would invite her to my wedding. If I get married, I am dedicating it to her. She would always question me about my love life and talk about how happy she was with my grandpa. She would also tell me to make sure I learn how to properly cook, as the way to a man's heart is through his stomach. I remember when she cooked for a bunch of hard working men on the Austrian alps in her apron with a huge bow in the back. After lunch they lined up to shake and kiss her hand. She then winked at me to get the point across.

Anyway, after Oma passed away, I mourned for about a week. I cried up until her funeral, but after she was buried, I put it behind me and moved on. Her funeral was so beautiful. Her casket was carried draped in flowers and carried along to Mozart, with the Austrian hills in the background. I couldn't be sad or hurt anymore after that.

I miss her so much, but I am not hurting either. She continues to make her presence known to me in my life. I inherited her prized necklace and ring my grandpa saved up to buy for her, which is smokey topaz. Did I mention that topaz is my birthstone ? I remember when I first started wearing it. It was like men were drawn to me like a magnet.

I also stumble upon pictures of us while cleaning, like earlier this week. I also have her letters. Once in a while she pops up in my dreams like I saw her yesterday.

I just feel lucky that I got to thank her before she passed. She is one of those people that I just feel lucky that she was in my life and that I got to know her. She was definitely a woman I looked up to and admired. She managed to spoil me while instilling good morals. The thing she did that had the greatest impact on me was volunteer with the mentally ill. I didn't realize it at the time, but it is definitely something I look back on and admire. She would have parties for them and manage their finances. It is so easy for the wrong people to get their hands on money of the mentally handicapped. But she made sure they were in order.

Okay, that is all for now. But I am sure I will be back to talk about her more down the road.


Secretia said...

It is a very special person who would volunteer to help people who are mentally ill. You are right to be pround of her.


Kerrie said...

It's lovely when you find something that brings back such good memories and love.

Big Mark 243 said...

I agree with Kerrie... and Secretia. You have a lot going on for you that is good.

I do hope, sincerely that you find your happiness in love and in your profession!!

mac said...

Schöne Geschichte,

Ihre Oma scheint sehr nett :-)

Sie hatten Glück, einander gehabt zu haben

Deine Mutter said...

Well, I cried long and hard after your beautiful post. I thank you for posting about my dear mom. She is still special to me of course, and I will never forget her. I was very glad that we could both be at her funeral. And you are right, it was a very simple funeral, but the most beautiful I ever saw. I thought the best thing about it is that they did not take her directly to her grave, but walked around the cemetary first, as if they were going to let her see the beautiful Austrian mountains one more time.

Thanks again,
And know that I love you very very much!

Deine Mutter said...

If you would indulge me a bit - would you please post the picture of you in the Dirndl and Oma in front of Zauner...I would be very grateful.

Much love,


Candice said...

She sounds like a very beautiful woman who had a huge role in your life.

I'm glad you found those pictures so that you could share her with us.


Senorita said...

Hi Mom,

Sorry, but I can't post that picture now as it was taken with film, and I need to buy a scanner first.

Also, the picture is kind of far away, so you wouldn't be able to see much, even if I were to post it up here.

But next time I see you I can bring it.

Ms. Jenni [xo] said...

A very beautiful post. Your Oma sounds exceptional and beautiful. =)

I help my mom take care of my grandma, who has ahlzeimers. It's hard to watch the decline, and we have to constantly remind ourselves of who she was before.

You have wonderful memories.

Shelly Rayedeane said...

Senorita- You can go to a kinkos and use their scanner if you need to. I should know. I've probably should buy a bed and put it at kinkos with how often I am there. You can either put a visa in the machine or put cash on a card.

I wish I was more like you and had an easier time of letting go. That is still a difficult one for me.

I hope you have a lovely weekend.


What a lovely tribute to what sounds like an awesome grandmother and mentor.

Sharon said...

I was going to ask to see a posting of your picture but someone beat me too it.

Ily said...

Sounds like an amazing and loving woman and I can see why you miss her. There aren't many key figures like that in our lives and she obviously had a positive and beautiful impact on you. Who can ever forget someone like that?

I'm glad you have her necklace, the old photos and the memories of your Oma.

PS - I love the visual of her in the apron with a bow in the back cooking in the Austrian Alps...and getting kissed by the boys after the meal. :)

* Ashleigh * said...

I'm glad you found that stuff in storage because I know how much you treasure your oma. She will live in your corazon siempre :)