Sunday, August 2, 2009

Loved and Lost

Grandmom Bruschetta passed away late last week. She had bounced back from health issues for the past 15 years like a cat with 27 lives, but at 87 years, was unable to continue fighting any longer.

As a blissfully happy bride in 1943.

We received the phone call from Daddy Bruschetta letting us know his mother likely wouldn't make it through the night while the mister was acting as the third wheel at a Bruschetta sister dinner. The world seemed to fall out from under us, and the hour or so we'd just spent eating too much guacamole and laughing away the wedding stress that's been increasing as our date approaches felt like a faint memory.

Together with Mama Bruschetta, we drove to the hospital, with BIL Bruschetta about ten minutes behind us. I'd been vaguely aware of Grandmom Bruschetta's most recent health struggles -- though Daddy Bruschetta had largely shielded us from having to cope with this painful situation until it was completely necessary -- but it came as a shock to see her slipping away nonetheless.

Nonna Bruschetta, Mama Bruschetta (holding a six week old me) and Grandmom Bruschetta outside the church for my christening.

Along with most of my tiny family, the mister and I gathered around my grandmother's bed. We blinked back tears, and fought to share only smiling faces and messages of love and support. When the hospice nurse entered the room, I struggled to maintain my composure as Daddy Bruschetta introduced my sister and her husband...and me and my fiance. It broke my heart to see her eyes moving from Sister Bruschetta to BIL Bruschetta, and then from Mr. Bruschetta to me, knowing she wouldn't be in attendance at our wedding at the end of the month.

This week, however, is all about Grandmom Bruschetta. The matriarch who remained mentally acute and unapologetically opinionated, made us laugh with her keen observations* and loved us all.

Grandmom Bruschetta with Sister Bruschetta and me at dinner celebrating my college graduation.

Although I'm keeping busy with the wedding checklist, no amount of crafts can fill this void, or make it seem right or normal to be preparing for such a celebration so soon after this loss. Have you dealt with the death of a loved one during your wedding planning?

*One of my favorites was Grandmom Bruschetta's comment this past Christmas that she'd be "one hot number" wearing the outfit the mister and I had gifted her. And yes, she was.

1 comment:

  1. I was recently in a wedding last month for one of my best friends. One week before her wedding we had a fantastic night planned for her bachelorette party. Unfortunately, her father passed away that day. All of the girls talked it over and with her blessing we continued to have her party. Yes, there were so many tears, but at the same time she was able to laugh and enjoy herself while being surrounded by her girlfriends. Her wedding went on without a hitch and promptly afterward they celebrated the life of her father.

    I know I don't "know" you, but I hope you're able to find comfort in those around you during this hard time. Let the tears flow, but also remember to laugh and celebrate, because I'm sure that's what your grandma would want!