The memory was gone as fast as is came and behind it I remembered other events in that kitchen. We spent so much time there as my husband would take a break from farm work to say "hello" and meet up in that place. A place that was always full of warmth and welcome. Where hot coffee was brewing in the winter with cookies or zwieback waiting on a Correl plate. In the summer she always had her instant ice tea ready, even though I never liked it because it wasn't "real" like my family made. Now I love that instant stuff. I got used to it and miss her pouring the non-sweetened powder into her green Tupperware pitcher with a splash of lemon juice from the fridge and a scoop of sugar from the drawer by the stove. It's those little things that were so distinctively "her" that I miss the most.
Again I remembered another memory from her kitchen, but this one not a good one. The time in March of 2006 when I brought Emma inside and set her on the floor to play; I asked how the dr. visit was and her youngest daughter, our aunt Joyce said, "You'd better tell them." Grandma always had a way of downplaying things and she said, "Oh, the doctors think I will die in 3 weeks." I watched her fidget with her cane, so full of life and love. I was stricken and terrified, but she was not. "Doctors, what do they know?" She said with a smile and a light laugh. She'd been a nurse for over 40 years. She knew exactly what the experts were talking about and she was aware of what came next. Instead of 3 weeks, we had 3 days. 3 hard, horrible days until she was gone. I miss her still. Every time I step into her kitchen and hope she will be there. I sit down there sometimes at that little table scrunched in the corner and remember how it was. It was so perfect. It seems sometimes that I don't realize how wonderful something is until it is gone. Today is just another day, but I hope I remember it as wonderful when it is over. I guess only I have control over that.
Emma and Grandma Peters, summer 2005