I just so happened to be walking past the home decor section when I saw it. It had this gorgeous gold foil dots and then in the cutest script said “You are my Sunshine.” My sister and I almost burst into tears on the spot. It’s funny how one little saying can be so engrained into your mind.
I remember being a little girl and whenever my Grandma would come to visit, was the highlight of my life. It felt like my own personal holiday. It was a magical time. My siblings and I would wait with our noses pressed to the window that looked out to the front of our house. Craning our necks trying to be the one who would get the first glimpse of Grandma turning the corner in her little van. The family rule was that only once she had parked her van could we go to greet her. So we’d wait until she was parked and we’d race out the front door singing “Grandma is here! Grandma is here!” and we’d wait by her door waving and blowing kisses. She’d come out and give each us of double doses of hugs and kisses and then we’d help her carry her things inside.
Once inside she’d sleep in the room that us girls shared. Me and my sister would share the top bunk and Grandma would get the bottom bunk. But since I hated sleeping with my sister, usually one of us would sneak out of bed in the middle of the night and cuddle up in the bottom bunk with Grandma. She never complained and was always there to whisper and share secrets.
Days when Grandma was visiting for the week were full of rides in Grandma’s van to the library to go get books and to McDonald’s for apple pies. Sometimes us kids would fight over her attention. Usually we were just so excited to be near her. She’d sit us down and tell us stories about our Grandpa who passed away. Sometimes she’d get teary eyed but mostly we laughed at his jokes and smiled at stories of his warm heart. She’d read us Bible stories and answer our silly questions with a giggle. I didn’t realize it at that time, but for each one of us she was our best friend and confidant. At night before bed we’d read books and sing songs. Grandma always always always sang You are my Sunshine and tucked us in with kisses and hugs. And as I drifted off to sleep I’d be sad that we were one day closer to her leaving.
The day Grandma had to go back home was always the worst. We’d be crying & begging to stay home from school to have more time with Grandma. She’d give us hugs and kisses and send us off with a “Jehovah bless you!”. While she only lived a few hours away we’d write letters. But the rule was that anytime something big happened, we were allowed to call Grandma and tell her the news. Usually something like getting an A or that I learned how to ride a bike. Since it was long distance, it was always a big deal that we got to call her.
So ever since I can remember, Grandma has always been my first call for when something good happened. She was my first call when I got my first job and then a few days later when I quit my first job because I got offered another job haha. She was my first call when I got braces and when I decided to start Pioneering. Calling her felt like… like getting a big warm hug. She’d tell me how proud she was and how much she missed her Brown Eyes #1 (her nickname for me). Sometimes she’d intertwine scriptures in because she always had the strongest and most pure faith. I always hung up with a smile on my face… because to me she was like sunshine.
Having a Grandma was the most magical thing. Every single one of those memories and feelings flooded back when I saw those words “You are my Sunshine.” Remembering the nights she’d spend singing those words until I fell sleep. Even though my Grandma isn’t here anymore… she’s still the first one I want to call and I still can’t bring myself to delete her number from my phone, because I still can’t comprehend the idea that she passed away 8 months ago.
Today was a good day. No… it was a great day. I got great news that I get to go on Trial at Automattic which is one huge step closer to becoming a Happiness Engineer. My dream job. Yet as excited as I am… it’s bittersweet because all I really want to do is call my sweet sweet Grandma to tell her. Oh how I miss her so.
So now these words hang on my wall… so I never ever forget the words she used to sing. I can’t call her now but I can’t wait until the day I get to sing them with her again and tell her all about the day that I found out I got to go on Trial at Automattic 🙂
“You are my sunshine. My only Sunshine. You make me happy when skies are gray. You’ll never know dear how much I love you. Please don’t take my sunshine away…”