I mentioned in a post on Friday that I believe with all my heart that my grandma is my guardian angel. She passed away when I was nine years old, I am 31 now. It's hard to believe it has been so long.
Grandma lived right up the dirt road. You see, my parents, like a lot of folks in the country, built on my dad's family's homeplace. So, Grandma was just a walk or bike ride up the road. She had a lot health problems, so by the time I came along she didn't get around well and relied on my aunt who lived with and took care of her.
Grandma had a big old chair with wide arms and I would climb up on the arm of the chair and sit with her for hours. I would do her hair and her nails...we'd play dominoes...watch TV...she'd let me go through her old trunk of keepsakes. We spent a lot of time together. I remember she liked RC Cola, those cookies with the marshmallow and coconut on top...and those little square ice cream cakes...I can't remember the brand right now. She wore day dresses and pastel cardigan sweaters and slippers. And hairnets...she wore hairnets. I almost forgot about that.
And handkerchiefs...she always clutched a handkerchief...and I bet she knows that I sort of do the same thing with tissues or napkins. And she had that special Grandma smell...old sort of...a mix of soap and Avon powder and lotion and just Grandma. A sort of mix of honeysuckle and something else I can never quite figure out...
I with I could describe that smell better, duplicate it somehow, bottle it forever.
I am not sure how many of you believe in ghosts or spirits or guardian angels. I hope a lot of you do. Sometimes I am not even sure what I believe but I can tell you that from time to time Grandma visits me. She did on Friday morning.
I was driving to work around 7:30am. As I often do I was thinking about things I wanted to do and things I needed to get done that day. I was especially thinking about BellaDella and how much the blog had become a big part of my life and how I wanted to expand on it in a number of ways...Remember the Della part is my Grandma. I was sort of repeating BellaDella over and over in my head. I didn't realize at first that the temperature in the car suddenly dropped (I checked the air- it was off) and that sweet smell was there...all around me. Her. Okay, so I will admit that my first reaction was Holy Crap! Grandma!?! I actually said that out loud. She was with me and all around me and riding along to work with me. And then the air warmed up and the smell floated away.
Hopefully you are still reading...so, as I kept driving I asked her to come back to me...that I wanted her there. I wanted to feel her again. And she came back. The sweet smell and chills that started at my toes and made my hair stand on end. Chills that I really can't describe. Chills so powerful they forced tears out of my eyes. It felt like a million hugs, hundreds of tiny kisses. Overwhelming goodness. Grandma.
And then she left again. I drove a little ways more. I thought I might have to pull over to find some tissues but I kept going...smiling so big through my tears. Trying to capture every tiny bit of it in my mind's eye. And in my head I said to her...It's a beautiful morning, isn't it Grandma? I know you love to go riding in the car. And as if she smiled at me and said- Yes, it is. She was there again. The chills, the sweet smell. Her arms wrapped around me tight.
I promise you I am about as sane as they come. Skeptical even sometimes. But I can tell you with 110% certainty that there is something out there bigger than us all and that I think our loved ones surround us each and every day. I am just lucky to get a glimpse of it every once in a while. Friday wasn't the first time. It happened to me once in high school- driving home alone late at night. It happened again during college- again in the car. My little brother has also had a "visit" from her in his car- driving home alone from North Carolina. My cousin also has experienced her presence- marked by her special scent...the sort of honeysuckle.
I'd love to know if any of you out there have any of your own ghost stories. Share...