Jason Howard Green

Jason Howard Green

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Better Days: A Tribute To All Grandmothers

A friend of mine just recently lost his grandmother. Jeremy (Jay) had been keeping me in the loop of his grandmother's health progress - from dementia to a cancer diagnosis to a transition to hospice. Then he dropped by my desk earlier this week to share with me that she passed away. Her failing health had already seemed to take its toll on him and it saddened me to learn that she had now been taken out of his life.

As I was driving to work today this song which I haven't heard in years came on the radio. The video above is that song, it is Better Days by Dianne Reeves. As it played I couldn't help but to think of Jay and the grief and loss he and his family are currently experiencing. The lyrics forced me to think of my own paternal grandmother who played such an important part in my growth and my development.

I am who I am today because of Lucy Pettaway-Green. She was beautiful and smart and determined and unyielding and relentless and witty. Since both my mom and dad worked, my twin brother and I were often left in the hands of this person who loved us and cared for us unconditionally (and we never minded it one bit). She would instill in us a love of God, respect for self, and tolerance and acceptance of all of our fellow man. She taught us the value of a good education and lived by the "it takes a village" mentalilty. Honesty and integrity were her redeeming qualities. I know my desire to live a truthful and authentic life is my effort to walk a path that would be acceptable in her eyes. My current moral compass is a direct result of the principles she ingrained in me.

So as I reflect on this song and my friend Jeremy and my own grandmother, I want to take a moment to acknowledge and thank all grandmothers (and grandfathers too) just in case you're unsure of the influence you're having. The world would be a darker more hostile place if you were not around to share your love and your wisdom and your humor and your time with those little ones who look up to you sooooo much. You probably are not ever aware of how important a role you're playing in creating our future parents, teachers and leaders.

Jeremy - you and your family are in my prayers. To everyone that has lost a grandparent, I hope with time your wounds have healed and you now only have fond, pleasant memories. And for those that are still blessed to have a grandparent in your life, please show them how much you appreciate them today because tomorrow is promised to no one.

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