74. It’s so hard to say goodbye…

Posted: April 14, 2010 in African American, faith, family
Tags: ,

I am told that the term “Goodbye” is derivative from the words “God be with you.” Saying goodbye is never easy, especially when that goodbye is to your last surviving grandparent.  On April 9, 2010, my grandmother, Betty Jane Quince departed the natural and re-entered the spiritual.

Left: JoAnne Quince-Duncan pictured with her mother Betty-Jane Quince

As I reflect on the life of Betty-Jane, my mind is flooded with over 40 years of special memories that took place in a little house in Pontiac, Michigan.  In close proximity to those fond memories lies an emotion I’ve come to know as regret.

The regret of not calling her as much as I should have…

The regret of not making my way to visit whenever I was in Michigan…

The regret of not making the most of opportunities provided to me by her and people like her…

My last visit to Betty-Jane occurred when I took my own granddaughter to Michigan for her first and only visit to Pontiac.  I remember thanking the Lord for blessing us to experience the presence of five generations sharing existence simultaneously.

While her physical health showed no real signs of deterioration, during her last few years with us, dementia increasingly reared its head.  I am convinced that one of the most difficult things to do in this life is to watch a love one’s mental state change before your very eyes.

The beauty in the passing of a grandmother lies in the intimate words of wisdom that helped to shape me into man I am.  I now fully understand that my life rests on the foundation of grandma’s prayers.

As I close this piece and prepare for a journey to Michigan to participate in the home-going services of Betty-Jane Quince, my comfort lies in the fact that she is resting in the arms of God, and her late husband, my grandfather, W.J.

Until we meet again, may you rest in eternal peace Grandma. We love you!

  1. Rachel Araya says:

    This is a beautiful tribute. Thank God for grandmothers. They are truly are “other mothers.” I’m praying for you and your family. She will always be with you!

  2. Sabin says:

    Somehow … we gotta go forward. With the blessings that were, we have to have the faith that it can carry us forward….

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