This story is about the time in my life of my grandmothers death, how i felt at the time...I wrote this story earlier this year, even though she's been dead for about six years now... **-*-*-*-*-*-*-*-** “Your grandmother’s in the hospital again.” Mother sighed, her tired voice normal seeming now. “I’ll drive you to school before I head out there.” I listened to her go back downstairs while I brushed my teeth. Her words echoed in my eleven year old mind. I recalled last Sunday, sitting across from my grandmother at the dinner table, all of us gathered around. I remember her laughing at a joke my grandpa made; her laugh is one of my fondest memories of her. I looked at the bruising on her body from experiments and mishaps, I was too afraid to ask about her illnesses, she was a southern-grown girl. It must shame her to be so helpless I thought. The van was silent, as it sliced through veils of fluffy white cotton while three children sat solemn, not in the mood for ruff housing and laughing. I looked back and forth out the windows, trying to find something to take my mind off my mother’s words. First stop. I watched both my brothers gloomily walk up to the high school as I silently wished their day would somehow be brightened. “Love you Mom.” I said softly as I closed the van door, I watched the vehicle get swallowed up behind veils of cotton before heading inside. I never remember even being at school that day but I figure it was the same as any other. A mask on my face kept even my friends convinced that everything was all right. Drifting from classroom to classroom in a routine I watched my friends laugh about things I didn’t understand. I was never so lonely in my life. Before long I was curled up in the backseat of the school bus heading my way home. Headphones blocked out the loud conversation and the screams, I closed my eyes and rested my head back to relax. I felt a hand shake me awake when we were at my stop; I blushed and rushed off the bus and up the driveway. I had known since this morning I would be returning to an empty house. It was far better to be alone in a house other than a waiting room. Eleven year olds aren’t allowed in the intensive care unit. The phone was ringing as I stepped through the door. Running into the kitchen I grabbed the phone and quickly answered it. Ambient elevator music accompanied my mother’s voice; I could hear the hesitation in her words. I tried my best to listen to her words, but they refused to be heard. I didn’t want to accept that my grandmother and best friend was going to die. “She slipped into a coma-…Grandpa wants to pull-…No ICU wont let you see her.” Tears rimmed my eyes as I heard my mother’s words. I felt helpless. I could imagine my grandmother lying on a hospital bed, her room unloving and cold. The only noise echoing out into the hallway would be a combination of the air moving of her respirator and the consistent beeping of her life support system. Thoughts continued into more detail until I could see so vividly her rising and falling chest, the pale look of her old wrinkled face, and the bruises across her arms from IV after IV. I felt ashamed for not taking our time together seriously and now I was regretting how childish I had been for not cherishing her like I should have. I felt that if I had spent more time with her, then now things would be different. I felt that I was the reason she was dying. Alma La Valle Von Tersch died two days before Valentines Day on the wishes of her husband. She was cremated; no funeral service was held. No family came to visit in our time of grief. I don’t even remember my Grandpa crying over her death at all. He showed no signs of pain. I took my families example and blocked out the emptiness. I carried on like nothing was wrong. It felt like she didn’t even ever exist to my family. I cling to my memories of her and to this day I dream of her. Every memory I cherish and hold close to my heart. She was everything to me, and I refuse to ever forget about her.