I didn't mention this on Saturday (yes, Saturday, because I slipped up and forgot to post on Friday) because I wasn't so sure I wanted to share something so personal. Then I thought about all my friends on here. Thanks, guys, for being so caring and supportive.
Today, February 5, marks the eighth anniversary of my maternal grandmother's passing. She and I were very, very close, and when she passed away, I was nearly inconsolable. She'd been with me since birth, and all of a sudden, she just wasn't there.
For a long time, I just sat around, sad and confused. Of course my dad explained to me what had happened, but it just didn't help ameliorate the pain. After a few months, I had to move thoughts of her death to the back of my mind so they wouldn't interfere with the rest of my life. But I still thought about her.
Those thoughts stayed in the back of my mind for a majority of the past eight years. Only last year did I manage to work up the courage to actually ask my dad when it was she had passed, so as to be able to remember all the good times when the date came around.
It took a couple hours of searching, but my paternal grandma found a prayer card made up for her. I had missed the seventh anniversary by two days.
Those two days I saw not as a missed opportunity, but, in a way, her way of showing me she appreciated what I wanted to do, just that it wasn't the right time for me to do so. As I had done so many times before, I looked at a star registry certificate given to me by a family friend shortly after her passing and thought of her. It was difficult not to; the star was named after her, official records sealed in the International Star Registry Bank in Switzerland.
It was then that I noticed the date on the prayer card was the same as the date on the certificate. It was painful to think that, after looking at that certificate so many times over the years, the date had been sitting right under my nose. I just couldn't see it.
No matter. Though I had missed it for seven years, I finally made it this year. I even made a necklace in memory of her: a black clay pendant with the kanji for love, 愛, painted on it in red. It's something I can always wear to remember her, wherever I go.