Something about death that has a numbing factor. It’s like I’m helpless. After Mom’s transition, some things just don’t feel the same. The way I respond to death. The knowing that comes before it happens. The grief before the grief. I feel it. Heavy. Sometimes, I feel if I don’t think about it, the reality won’t have to set in. Then add a pandemic and it’s another level of rollercoasters of grief. Every occurrence takes me back to THAT place when I experienced a loss so deep not even the sharpest, longest knife could reach it.
Sometimes you have to laugh to keep from crying. Literally.
My Godfather transitioned over a week ago, and has since been laid to rest. Only a few knew. I wanted to share it in a status update and possibly upload a video—or even cry my eyeballs out on live, but that wasn’t going to happen. I go back to that numbing place of grief, and laugh it out or post funny memes, or sit alone in silence—and cry.
Ironically, he and my Mother both visited me in a dream a week before his transition. I know to some that sounds weird or crazy, but they were both smiling, happy and whole. My Mom was putting on some type of Fenty-like facial scrub, wearing her throwback Umbro (short-shorts), and her cute, side ponytail. My Godfather, Herman, had on an Alabama (Roll Tide) T-shirt, and said…”Come here girl and give me that jaw!” He loved to grab my “bubble jaws” (as they were affectionately called since I was a little girl) as he would give me the biggest kiss on the cheek. This was our most cherished greeting. That was all of the confirmation I needed. It was a matter of time.
He loved some Alabama football. He was a super fan, and he is no doubt cheering right now in heaven. One of my early memories was him and my Dad taking me to an Iron Bowl game. He always had a story about Paul “Bear” Bryant and Nick Saban. My Godfather was the one who walked me down the aisle after my Dad passed in 2004. He still would have regardless, because he didn’t play about “Little Artney”. He told me last summer, “I loved you before you were born.” Yes, he said those exact words. I will be forever grateful for the time I got to spend with him and his wife (my namesake, my beloved Godmother, Big Artney) while we Celebrated the Life of their son, my brother, CT. As I think back, CT brought us together one last time—as a family— before my Godfather’s decline.
Our last visit with you this past January will forever be cherished. You were my Dad, Granddad, and Godfather ALL safely, wrapped in one. I will miss you immensely, but I know that you are HEALED and whole. I love you, HLT.
Thank you for taking care of my Mom since the beginning. Thank you for loving us unconditionally. Thank you for teaching me how to drink coffee as a little girl and make it taste good (with two and a half packs of Sweet’N Low). Now you, Mom, and Dad get to watch over us all—together. You are loved and cherished beyond measure.
Roll Tide Forever…
Until we meet again.