My wonderful Mormor (Grandma) passed away peacefully while I was back in the UK over Christmas. I was so glad to be with her over Christmas and in the same country when she went to be with Jesus. Today, however, I’m back in Congo. Today, it’s her cremation and tomorrow a thanksgiving for her life. I can’t be there, but I want to leave my little tribute to my wonderful Mormor who I love so much and who has made such a big impression on my life:
Well Mormor. Here we are. I’m sat writing this on my bed in the middle of Congo, feeling quite far away. I don’t really know where to begin. There are so many things I could say about my Mormor. So many happy memories, so many lessons learnt. So I think I’ll just type and see what happens.
Mormor was positive. Did you know, it never rains at Appletrees (her house)? Did you know that Mormor didn’t used to get colds? She simply didn’t believe in getting ill. Sometimes Mormor’s attitude was maybe slightly too optimistic, but it was always there. Right up until the end, she always found something to be affirming about, whether it was watching the birds come and feed in her garden, having a glass of sherry with the neighbours, or laughing with her wonderful carer. She taught me to find good in any situation.
Mormor was: don’t step on the cracks in the pavement or the bears will get you. Make bananas with your fingers at the dinner table while waiting for pudding. Close your eyes and spin the lazy susan to determine which sandwich you’d get. How long can you suck your fruit pastille for? Pooh sticks on the walk along the river. Full of games, full of fun: or maybe in hindsight games to keep us grandchildren quiet and out of mischief. But it worked, and we loved them.
Mormor was hospitable. Mormor was family. Appletrees was our second home. We’d go there after school at least once a week. Mormor would bake us brownies, and allow us ‘just one more’ when Mum wasn’t looking. We’d have high teas on Sunday afternoons with the cousins after walks to the rope swing. Birthdays, Christmas, Easter would be celebrated with all the family and the house would become so festive. The smell of cooking would waft from the kitchen. Bunting would be hung for birthdays and the Danish flag flown. Easter eggs laid throughout the house for treasure hunts at Easter, and Christmas would be the best of all. Baking Christmas biscuits together, decorating the tree, putting out the nativity set very carefully. And then Christmas Eve: us cousins singing carols on the stairs, the lighting of the candles on the tree, excitement of who won the almond from the Christmas pudding. To a little girl, those Christmas Eve’s we would celebrate at Appletrees were truly magical. Family was simply Mormor’s heart.
Mormor was questions. Always showing interest in me, always caring about my passions. When we were little, she’d buy us travel journals for when we went on holiday and tell us to draw things in them to share with her when we got back. Even recently, when her memory was fading or she wasn’t feeling so good, Mormor would still have conversation for me. A few weeks ago, I was back in the UK for a visit from Congo. I went to see Mormor the same day I arrived back. She had so many questions for me: do I like it? Have I made friends? Are there any snakes? What’s the weather like? And that was typical of Mormor. She always showed so much interest in me and what I was doing.
Mormor, there’s so much I could say. You left us not only with so many happy memories, but your investment in our lives made us better people. I love you, I’ll miss you. But I’m so thankful and proud to have had you as my Mormor. I couldn’t have chosen better.