The One about my Grandmother Virginia


It was a little over a month ago that I celebrated my grandmother’s 90th birthday.  And at the same time, our family was preparing the 40th day of the death of my Uncle Jun.

And here I am again, preparing another week of mourning for my grandmother Virginia with a viewing and a funeral.

As I prepare my eulogy for my grandmother, I had a lot of things that went in my mind that I wanted to discuss, but then suddenly, today of all days, memories came rushing in of how much my grandmother was there for me in the biggest moments of my life.

She was there when I moved to Southern California, she was there to purchase me my first jewelry, she was there to teach me more about my Filipino culture and learning and understanding the language, she was there to teach me how to iron my shirts, wash my clothes (by hand), plant vegetables and flowers and learn how to maintain them and even clean floors (by hand), as she wanted me to grasp how my family had experienced in the past.

Learning a lot from her, it was not easy.  In fact, she was the first to say, “you may not like what you are doing now, but one day, you will thank me.”

And suffice to say, a year later, I thanked my grandmother because of how persistent she was for me.

I often have to laugh because although she was strict with me, it was interesting to see how it carried over to my personal life.  I would get calls from girls and they would tell me, “I tried to call you but your grandma told me to never call again and hung up the phone”.  Girls would tell me they went by the house and my grandmother would tell them that I was not there and please don’t come back.

My grandmother wanted the best for me and this is not just for me, this also extended to her children, her grandchildren and her great-grandchildren.

When my girlfriend at the the time, moved in with me, at first I was a little worried of how my grandmother would react.  But she was nice towards her.  In fact, my girlfriend had a sore shoulder and back that my grandmother wanted to massage her.  That blew me away.

But she was there for many important moments of my life and it saddens me that while I no longer have any living grandparents, knowing that she was a woman that was dedicated to her faith, knows that she is reunited with my grandfather, Moises.

My grandparents on my father’s side: Virginia and Moises
My grandparents on my mother’s side: Rosalia and Luis

While she has lived a great life, it was no doubt difficult when my grandfather died.  Having someone you love and have been with for many decades is tough and then to lose another son, was difficult for her.

I saw the same thing with my grandfather on my mother’s side after my grandmother had passed.  It was tough for him as well and he had been with my grandmother for many decades.

But I like to believe my grandparents are now in a better place, reunited with loved ones that have passed and most importantly, reunited as a couple.

I remember when Justin Timberlake said that the song “Mirrors” was inspired by the love of his grandparents.  And so I take today to dedicate “Mirrors” to my grandparents: Moises and Virginia and Luis and Rosalia.