I’m Glad My Near 100-Years-Old Grandma Is an Unlikeable Woman

There aren’t as many of us out in the open as there should be

Katie Jgln
The Noösphere


Image licensed from Shutterstock

I’m sitting in the communal area of a retirement home, waiting to see someone I expect to be in as bad a shape as the few elderly people around me: my paternal grandmother.

The home she’s staying in isn’t half bad, at least. It’s located in a historic and well-preserved manor in a small town in southwestern Poland, originally built in the early Middle Ages to serve as a bishops’ residence. But it’s still a strange place; the only noise comes from one of the residents humming to themselves, and the air has a distinct staleness to it, mixed with the scent of hospital food.

My family decided to place my grandma here a year and a half ago after she had a series of abdominal surgeries the doctors described as ‘necessary but extremely high-risk.’ She survived them, but the recovery was neither easy nor quick, and she could no longer live on her own.

As the rain outside the glass entrance intensifies, I see my grandma come out of one of the side doors, pushing herself in a wheelchair with a faint smile. She looks good. Better than good, actually. And probably better than she has in quite a while.