On McDonalds and You Never Knows

When my Nan was in her last few days of life, my family and I rallied around her bed side doing our best to muster the right sort of goodbyes. Despite her normally upbeat personality and unwillingness to give in to her pain, my grandmother's tough exterior slowly began to crumble. Organs had stopped working weeks earlier, her body had shrunk to an unrecognizable heap, her voice dwindled to barely a whisper; this person in front of me wasn't in fact my grandmother but instead a very sick individual. Days passed, and the nurses took my mother aside. They were confused. A person like my grandmother should not still be alive. She had been given just days to live almost 4 weeks earlier, yet here she was, laying so peacefully in her bed, alive, with a slight smile across her lips. She'd tell us every now and then that 'she was just fine, thank you.' Just fine.

I'm a big believer in 'You Never Know.' As in 'You Never Know' if you don't try. Or 'You Never Know' if could look different on your body than it does on the hanger. Although my skepticism can sometimes get the best of me, I like to instill a little itty bitty bit of faith in the situations, and people around me. Even if I know what's going to happen, and when I can predict how things will end up and turn out, a little "You Never Know" can really make all the difference.

I had to say my goodbye before I went back to school that May. I sat next to my grandma, my best friend, and read her a card I had painfully written to her. We held hands. I tried unsuccessfully not to show her signs of any emotional weakness. Then I did the hardest thing I've ever had to do, and walked out of that hospice seeing her for the last time. Just days later I got a phone call from my Mom who explained that Nan had asked my Grandpa to take her for one last car ride. She didn't want some fresh air, and she wasn't searching for an excuse to spend alone time with my Grandpa. Yet instead, my sweet and very frail Grandma, the one who would pass on just two days later, was craving some McDonald's. Together they drove the short distance to the closest golden arches, just the two of them for the last time.

Go make that career change. Go get that tattoo, that hair cut, that pair of jeans that costs the same as your entire pay check. Go ask for that raise, go tell the bully at work his behaviour is acceptable, go try to make that 5-layer-chocolate cake that calls for ingredients you've never even heard of. Go buy that lottery ticket, that work out video you've had reservations about, that dress you think makes your bum too big. Go bring a plate of cookies to your grumpy neighbor. Go tell your Mom, your Dad, your cousin, your grandma, your best friend, your boss, your paperboy, you pet iguana that you love them, because 'You Never Know.'


I Never Knew I'd be sitting here submitting an Inspiration Shoot to Style Me Pretty but I just did tonight (wheee!) And I can pretty much guarantee if it was even remotely possible, my heart would be decked out in pretty red ruffles like the ones on these beauties above. Thank you Beth for being a fabulous partner and taking such wicked photos for me. Cannot wait to show the rest off. Happy Weekend loves xo

20 Lovely Comments:

Free Pretty Things For You said...

OMGosh!!!! Jumping Up And Down with you!!!!!! :D
We will be seeing you There on a regular basis My Love!!
cant wait to see it live on SMP!

XOXOXOXO
Keren

opps i messed up on the first comment ;)

Karena said...

So moving and oh so true!!

I have a New Giveaway from My Sparrow, do come and enter!

xoxo
Karena
Art by Karena

Laura said...

This is wonderful, and so true. I feel like I was reading about my grandmother... She fought that same fight, and somehow kept trucking.. but it was TGI FRIDAYS that she really wanted :) Those chicken fingers... haha. <3 This really brought back sweet memories for me.. So glad You wrote it! and... congrats on SMP! Fabulous shoes too!

Tiffany said...

What a great post! I'm sure the photos were amazing. Go for the gusto...

Lisa said...

What a special relationship you had with your grandmother. And what a spunky lady she was to have a craving for McDs!!

Lindsay said...

What an awesome post. I also had to say my last goodbyes to my grandmother in hospice before leaving back to school. I knew it was the last time I would ever see her and once I hit the door I lost it. I frequently say "you never know", because really, you don't!

I'maNolaGirl said...

This was such a beautiful and inspiring post! Your grandma other's spirit was in every word.

Can't wait to see the photos!

Victoria said...

This is a lovely piece and a wonderful story of your grandma. Thanks for sharing this. I know I shall be saying a last goodbye to my mother in the coming year. We live in different countries, and I'm doing my best to spend time with her and enjoy some laughs and memories together and make life just a little bit easier for her now. Thanks again for a wonderful post. Oh and great shoes!

Char said...

It is like you knew EXACTLY what was going on in my life too. Thank you for posting this, I was working on a very similar post saying almost the exact words. Congrats!!

Michaela said...

Oh goodness!! I can't wait to see the rest of the shoot (: And I'm so proud of you for taking that risk in submitting them! What a touching story, Rhi. I can't imagine losing someone close to me like that. Your grandma sounds like such a sweet spirit. Thank you for the inspiration to go for it!

LouBoo said...

Oh Rhi - I love your thoughtful posts - they set my day. The little view of the shoot looks just inspired, can not wait to see it all. You go from strength to strength don't you? Lou x

Simone said...

I loved this post Rhi, beautifully written and real feeling behind it.

"You Just Never Know" is so true - I think you might have inspired me to have that as my mantra for 2011.

So excited to see your work, you are the best! xx

Wendy said...

So true Rhi ~ you just don't know. A cousin's wife died riding her bike to work..... my grandma was hit by a drunk driver while walking across the street.... you don't know when or how.... so live each day to the fullest, and love as if you won't be able to share that love tomorrow! Simple words to say, but some that should be put into action!

ASHLEY said...

What a sweet post :) and so very true. Congrats on SMP! Have a lovely week!

Chic 'n Cheap Living said...

So right Rhi, you never know so just do it!

April a.k.a. "A. Liz" said...

Such a pretty and heartfelt post. Thanks for sharing. See you on the SMP pages soon! :)

Ashley said...

friend, i just loved loved loved this post. so raw and true.

proud of you, oh so proud, for putting yourself out there...in more ways than one.

xoxo

Christa said...

This was wonderful and I definitely needed to read it today :)

xoxo

LR said...

Fabulous post and a great reminder to live our lives to the fullest. Here's to living full in 2011!

miss savealittle said...

this is a very inspirational post. thank you for sharing. :)