I have never thought that COVID was a joke. When it first hit, I was one of the first people wearing a mask out to the stores. I forbid my husband to go out so at least one of us would not get sick if I got sick going grocery shopping. We limited interactions with ALL family. And when things got lifted we stayed careful, we stayed 6 ft apart or more and wore masks. We refused invites to most events and the others were outdoors and we still wore our masks.

But it takes everyone’s cooperation to beat COVID, not just mine.

Last week I was told that my grandmother, Inez Lucero, came down with COVID after her room mate in the nursing home she was staying at tested positive. My grandmother was coughing and she started to have a fever. Her nursing home was officially infected, 7-8 months into the COVID lock down. They stayed good for so long but it was only time…

New Mexico is having an uncontrolled spread of the virus right now and we are actually going back into lockdown tomorrow, Monday November 16th. I am all for the lock down, the hospitals are overwhelmed and we need to stop the spread. But this brings up issues now that my grandmother has passed…. can we have a funeral… I know I can’t see her.

I am struggling with the unknown right now. I’ll never know her scent again. I wish I could have seen her one more time, or said good bye to her. To let her know how much I love her and how much the kids love her. But COVID is a cruel virus… it takes from us and keeps it away. We don’t get to say good bye.

But I know she isn’t suffering anymore. And that gives me some happiness. I don’t even know if happiness is the word. Relief? Yes that’s it. She has been done for so long. And now she can be at rest.

I am hurting and I know the pain will pass eventually and I can look back the wonderful memories I have of her. The times of her giving my brother and I fudge pops when she would watch us while my mom worked two jobs, as a single mother to support us. I remember grandma and I shared a room for a while, and she SNORED so loud. I remember her buying me skimpy clothes and telling me to show off what I had, but my mother knew I was shy and told me I didn’t HAVE to wear the clothes grandma bought me. And I remember she liked to drink beer…. and one day when we were walking in California toward the beach she stopped and chatted with some young Mexican men and asked for a beer, it was HILARIOUS. They LOVED her. And yes she got a beer.

I’ll miss her hugs. She cried every time she saw me. I will miss the times when she was going deaf my mom would tease when she couldn’t hear us. Also – before you yell at me about that- I found out its hereditary and I too am losing my hearing HAHA justice is served. I will remember the time she met my husband, who was my boyfriend at the time, and shes legally blind…. she asked very loudly “IS HE A GRINGO?” and I had to yell “YES GRANDMA HE IS” and yes she is Hispanic.

I want to hug my mother. To let her know it’s okay. She’s lost her mother and her father now. I sent her something in the mail yesterday, because the information she told me about grandma’s health told me she was not going to make it. I code charts for Hospice patients and Home Health, I know the wording used for end of life. When a nurse says certain things, it means something… I too was hopeful that things would turn around but I cried last night for so long that today I woke up with puffy eyes. And now it hurts to cry even more that I know she is gone.

Grandma Inez, you are with your mother now, and your two sons and your daughter. May you rest in peace.

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