Today is April 18th, it is my grandmother’s birthday, she graduated from this life on August 10, 2013. I dare not tell you her age, I’m afraid she’ll pop me upside my head from the after life. Anyone that really knows me, knows what my grandmother means to me. I learned so many valuable lessons in life from her as she was probably one of the strongest people I ever met. She was my best friend, to make her laugh was always such an accomplishment, she was the funniest person EVER!
My grandmother was from “old school” Puerto Rico living in “new school” America and sometimes there was a clash of realities that helped shape the duality that is me. From packing her pistol to the best baked chicken you have ever had, she was a modern day personification of something you have seen in a Tyler Perry movie in Spanish. Yet without knowing how to read, she could quote any scripture from the Bible, and no one could ever outsmart her when it came to money, she was also one of the smartest people in life I had the pleasure of knowing.
Today as I think about our talks and remember our fights, I am so thankful for the pleasure of knowing, loving and being hers. I look at my hands, catch myself in the mirror and see myself standing as she did, and say to myself, “this woman really lives in me”. Cancer was no match for Aida Maisonet, she was truly a victor, she lived her life that way until the very end. I remember her telling me in 2000 when she first got diagnosed, “You don’t have to come here, I’ll let you know when I’m going to die, doctors don’t dictate a life that is governed by the celestial father” (this was in Spanish of course, I did my best). She died 14 years later, I guess she was right.
I always want to honor her and not exploit her journey for a good Facebook post for the sake of likes and pity, today I want to just acknowledge the love. Despite others pointing out my granmother’s flaws and shortcomings, nothing can ever molest the love that I have for this woman. What she was to me is unique and I probably can’t explain it to others because it dwells in my heart and the beautiful thing is that I don’t have to explain it.
Today I spoke/performed at an event to support a cause against the C word, it felt like the only thing I should have been doing. I met a 2 year old that is a Cancer survivor and her teenage cousin, also a survivor, and heard their stories of courage and triumph. It is great to make people laugh, it is healing, it was my priviledge to participate and to just be in the presence of these amazing spirits.
So here’s to you AIDA MAISONET, thank you for being mine and loving me in a way that only we understood, and yes I wore my yellow!