We often like to think of ourselves as people of our own creation, completely different from those we came from. Until you start to see the patterns and threads that contributed to who you are. My grandmother Eva lived her life in Hawai'i, so was separated by distance from my immediate family, but the threads still remain. Grandma and her brother were raised by their mother Lucille (my middle name is a tribute to her) after their father killed himself.
She worked as a nurse for many years, and also met and married my grandfather, policeman Eugene. They had a simple wedding, the Catholic version of eloping, and had their wedding brunch at Woolworth's.
Together they had six children, the eldest of which was my father Frederick.
My grandmother read romance novels - categories were a particular favorite and loved to work with her hands. As children, my siblings and I received quilts, Christmas stockings, felt advent calendars, and fairytale inspired ornaments from her.
Her six children led to sixteen grandchildren (making all the above all the more impressive since she had a lot of grandkids to spoil). There is also a growing number of great and even great-great grandchildren.
Eva lost her husband Eugene, her partner for over fifty years, a decade ago. Her son Frederick predeceased her also. But last night, at the age of 94, she went to join them, after finally giving up the fight against congestive heart failure.
So, thank you Eva, for the love of reading and crafting, both of which have served me well.
Aloha 'oe, aloha 'oe...A ho'i a'e au
Until we meet again.
"Aloha 'Oe" written by Queen Lili'uokalani
Edited, because I forgot to count myself.