My Time with someone else’s Grandma.
Jeanne Weaver is 86 years old. I am going to let you in on a secret, she sure doesn’t act like it. She has quick wit and a sharp tongue. Soon after meeting this lovely woman, she told me about the one time she tap danced on her principal’s desk. When I laughed and asked her why she did that, she responded quickly, “Well, he wasn’t in there and I wanted to… I tap danced everywhere”. She made us laugh as she played with my daughter’s hair. She complained about her sister, Betty the princess, and how she was always the pretty one, and she wouldn’t let Jeanne and the other sisters forget. She showed me a black and white photo of her and her siblings, sans Betty. Betty was the only family member with a camera and she took the photograph. It is a damn good photo, I want a copy. I heard a story about her peeing the bed and moving one of her twin sisters on to the wet spot so that she would get into trouble instead of Jeanne. The next morning, her sister had to wash the sheets by hand. Jeanne smiled and shrugged her shoulders, we laughed some more.
When I asked her if there was a day that she would relive if she could, she replied, “Honestly I don’t know, I always had fun.”… And I believe it. I sat on the floor across from her, she still played with my daughter’s hair. Her facial expressions lit up the whole damn room, and I couldn’t help but fall in love with her, like all the boys did once upon a time.
Jeanne lost her husband nearly three years ago. They had been married 63 years. He had Alzheimer, and now she does too. Hers is moving much faster though, so her granddaughter says. Tonight she asked me about him. She looked me straight in the eyes and said, “Is my husband dead?”. And I couldn't bring myself to tell her, yes. I avoided the question and looked at the enlarged photo of the two of them from some years back, both looking at one another adoringly. I have always wanted that kind of love, and to be honest I think I found it.
“If you love someone, don’t be forceful or give them crazy advice, just be close, very close with your mate, and plan everything to be number one with them.” Jeanne said that this is the is the key to a long and happy marriage. The hour or so I spent in her little, very tidy home, will stay with me forever.
Jeanne Weaver, you lovely creature, you may not be able to remember my name, but I will always remember yours.