Wednesday, February 3, 2010

The Braids...


She pulled tightly at her granddaughters hair. The only proper way to French braid is to do it tightly. The granddaughter winced at the procedure, but knew the pain was worth the final product.

Her fingers worked quickly and professionally, as they should, having spent many hours of her life braiding her 6 daughters hair most every morning.

She laughed as she braided, as she told stories of her childhood and just acted plain silly.

Mainly the granddaughter didn't care so much about the braids. She just wanted her Grandma to braid her hair - to have her undivided attention and listen to her sweet, soft voice and lively laughter. Mainly the granddaughter just wanted to feel her Grandmas sweet touch.

And she would laugh and tell her granddaughter the same thing, every time she braided her hair..."Oh, Tracy - I am so sorry you inherited my thin, limp hair. It is so hard to braid. I pray for a daughter for you with thick, long locks."

The granddaughter would close her eyes and dream about the daughters she would have with thick hair - unlike her own and her grandmas.

She would finish the braiding the same way every time. With a gentle kiss on the top of her granddaughters head.

The final product was always perfect.

The granddaughter looked up into her Grandma's sparkling eyes and thanked her for braiding her hair and laughed like a school girl at the braids she now wore as a 32 year old woman.

The granddaughter would never feel too old for her Grandma's touch or to hear another one of her stories.
****
As the granddaughter gently braided her own daughters hair this morning, a cardinal flew by the window.

A tear ran down the granddaughters face as she remembered that this is the day her Grandma passed 4 years ago.

How bittersweet to kiss her own daughters head and wish for her a daughter with thin and shiny hair - hair just like her Grandma's.

xoxo,t

16 comments:

kari said...

Tracy, this is beautiful....I love the memories that you have, and the way that people always seem to live on in the people they touch after they are not physically here any longer. I also love your spotting of the cardinal-I probably have not told you that the cardinal has become a symbol for my sister of her husband, Billy (remind me to tell you it some day in entirety). There is something breathtaking about seeing them in this seemingly colorless time of year. Thanks you for sharing your sweet thoughts.xo

Ginny said...

Your whole family is now crying, as we typically do on this day of rememberence - however this blog is so her - so true. She was a one of a kind. I know of NO ONE like her. Thank you, dear daughter, for this loving tribute. I wish I had a picture of all of us girls - including you and your girls - with the braids! Yes, the cardinals visit me every day!

Stacey said...

Absolutely Beautiful on all accounts... your Grandma, the braids, Esther, the cardinal, and the kisses on the head...
Much Love to you today!

S

Mathmom and family said...

What a beautiful tribute to someone so dear.

Rachelle said...

Oh my gosh... Tracy, this is beautful. You are a talented writer. Thank you for sharing with us.

Melanie said...

Beautiful,simply beautiful. Thanks for sharing a glimpse of your precious grandma. It is good to remember!

Anna said...

What a beautiful post Tracy.. it made me smile and tear at the same time.

Jess said...

I can just picture your story as a children's picture book that is loved by adults just as much as it's loved by children. And illustrated, of course, by someone with just the right touch...Patricia Polacco style. Thank you for sharing this story. It's precious.

Amanda M. said...

so beautiful, tracy. <3

Izzy'sMom said...

That was beautiful Tracy. So touching.

Ann said...

Beautiful post, Tracy.

Heather - Hopelessly Flawed said...

You made me cry, too. This is a beautiful tribute to your grandmother.

We just passed the 1 year anniversary of my Grama's passing, and for us it was hair-brushing. Grama brushed my hair, and my daughters hair, for hours. I have her hairbrush now as a very prized posession.

Melanie said...

goosebumps. covered with them.

xoxo

Kristi Pohl said...

Typing this through tears, your grandma is smiling right now at all of the wonderful messages she is reading in heaven. I am pretty sure they have the internet up there.

jill R said...

You are blessed to have such a sweet memory of your grandma.

Michelle said...

love this. hugs to you my friend,

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