Tonight Daughter and I were sitting in McDonald's eating supper. An older woman was walking out, and we watched as she stopped, slowly bent over, and picked up two french fries off the floor and put them in the trash. We looked at each other and smiled. "Grandma," I whispered, and we both began to laugh. Mom had this thing for floors. She'd walk through stores, restaurants, or just down the sidewalk picking up trash. When she first moved into the memory care unit, they told us they were always finding her one her hands and knees picking little pieces of lint and such off the floor. We just laughed.
I told Daughter that it was good that we were remembering Grandma and laughing now, instead of crying. She agreed.
I am making napkins out of flour bag dish clothes I bought at Sam's Club. Yesterday I began cutting each one into 4 pieces. Mom was a perfectionist, and she would have measured them with precision so the cuts were straight and each one was an identically sized rectangle. Since I'm just making these for our every day use, I decided they didn't have to be perfect. I folded them in half and cut. Some of the sides are crooked, some of them are weird shapes, and it's okay. I don't have to make myself crazy seeking after perfection.
I can laugh at memories of her quirks and honor all she taught me, and I can discard those burdens she placed on me that no longer serve me. I am grateful for all I learned from her, and for the laughter Daughter and I shared when we watched a woman pick up a french fry in McDonald's.