This week marked seven years since we lost the matriarch of our family.
But while I can lament on all the ways I miss her and her examples of love, compassion and nurturing, I know that the void in my life is no comparison for the absence apparent in the life of my grandpa, her husband.
It became obvious soon after her death. At her request, she was buried at her ranch in Mexico. A few days after a memorial service here in the U.S., our family packed up and loaded a charter bus, heading south to fulfill her wishes.
My sweet grandpa packed his own bag. It wasn’t until we arrived to our destination and we dressed for the viewing that he realized he had packed two left-foot boots.
Since the passing of his life partner, my grandpa has made huge domestic strides. He can artfully navigate the tricky aisles of the grocery store, even expanding his shopping list beyond cigarettes and scratch-off tickets.
But despite the progress he’s made, there’s one task he has yet to master.
Preparing coffee for one.
He is now retired. But for as long as he was married to my grandmother, he worked. Every morning, he’d wake up and fill the kettle with enough water for coffee for the two of them.
On the anniversary of my grandma’s death I visited with him. He told me of his day’s events – the errands he had run, the people he had seen.
He assured me he was doing well and was going to get back to chores around the house.
But first he was going to warm up the water left over from this morning and pour himself another cup of coffee.
Erika Pedroza is a reporter for the Messenger.