Saturday, August 25, 2012

Jimmy's In The Mail....

Jimmy's In The Mail..........

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee

Jimmy is traveling once again.  This is 'Day 2'.  He is traveling in a way he never traveled.  I tried to make his trip as comfortable as possible, he was used to traveling on planes, trains, by car ... he used to travel the world.

This is a shorter trip for him, though it's quite long.  He is traveling from North Carolina to Oregon.  This will be his last trip, one with alot of meaning.

Thank-you to my cousins for allowing me to keep Jimmy's ashes.  It made possible for me to keep a promise I made to him many times... in his words:  "put my ashes with Earlene's and Ricky's, and Tommy's Chest in your art room."

I did exactly what he asked.  I used to tell him about Earlene and Ricky's ashes, Tommy's Chest... (my mother, brother, son) ... sitting in beautiful chests in my colorful room full of sunshine.

Jimmy decided he wanted his ashes put with them, in his words:  "Earlene and I can match wits again like we did in life when we were younger."  He would go on to relate the many times they would try to 'get the best of each other .... with words!'

Truthfully, I never 'heard any commotion, or voices' come from my art room.  It was always peaceful each time I went in there... sometimes.... it was I who disturbed that peace.

The only sounds I heard in my art room was........ myself, as I would softly cry missing Tommy, missing my mama, missing my brother, missing ..... the list goes on, there are 'too many names' to write at this moment.

They've all went away in the past few years.  I have been in a 'state of grief, shock, sadness' for so long.... people I might should have never loved... were the very people I loved with my heart... when they died, it hurt me to my soul.... just to the core of my heart.

Recently.. there have been two more deaths.................... they both affected me deeply.... no one knows.............. not only that................

I've finally 'let go' of my closest family that is left in this whole world......... my nephew hurt me to my heart... he doesn't know how he has the wrong impression of me.... I don't have what it takes anymore to 'just go tell him'... he wouldn't believe anyway.

I have to 'let go' for my own sanity ...... I should have learned my 'family lessons' many, many years ago.... but, I didn't.  'Hope' pushed me through the years to be hurt many, many times over.  I am like a piece of toast now, though 'not hard and brittle'.... I've been scorched many times.

The bright, happy sunshine chased away any shadow that dared to enter my art room full of ... happy colors.  Bright colors, bold colors, pastel colors... in acrylics, watercolors, spray paints, poster paints, and chalkboard paints.

Colorful objects, pencils, pens, colored markers, colored Sharpies.... adorn my white art tables.  This is the room that reflects 'me'... at this moment it is .... a 'little' disorganized.......... just like I get at times.  'This is one of those times... though no one knows'.

Truthfully... so you will know... I miss Tommy... I've been looking at his photos.  'I've been thinking about opening Tommy's Chest'...... I feel panic inside, my stomach has a scared feeling inside'... all I want to do is to hold some of 'his' things in my hands, I just want to hold my child's things in my hands.

I think I may have to 'get past that little plastic box of photos'... photos of........... for now, I 'will let go of this'.... in my memory this is all I can 'see' in his beautiful chest... they are 'scary'... in the way a mother can't bear to see.

I will let you know 'if and when' I open Tommy's Chest... 'getting past the box of photos is what I'll have to build up strength for'................................................ you know... like one of the obstacles you have conquer...... before going any further on a path.  I've really tried to prepare all this time.... I really have.

I see that for the moment it is stressing me to think about it.... my stomach feels sick, panicky with butterflies.... I am taking quick breaths, exhaling them out through my mouth, my shoulders are pulled back.... it's going to be alright, it's going to be alright............

Let me get back to my 'happy-sad' story.... Jimmy's trip via postal mail.... his last trip, one that is very meaningful to his family, to me.

I'm telling you about my cousin Jimmy, about him traveling once again!  By mail..... he never did that before!  I made this possible... and I smile because 'I know he would have loved it'.... like me, he loved being ... different.  I'm proud to have some part in this, to take him home to be.................. with his mother who passed away just over a week ago.

He will be reunited with his mother.  This feels so right... I feel good inside ... I can't be there when his ashes are put with his mother's ashes... placed in a special place in Oregon.... but, I've done my part by helping him to get there in time.... for Labor Day weekend.

Today is 'Day 2'... Jimmy will arrive at his destination in 'two to three days'.

I sent him Priority Mail... his ashes are in a thick plastic bag to make sure they stay together while traveling... placed inside a smaller, sturdy box that is inside a priority mail box.

I had to leave open the boxes when taking to the post office so, the clerk could see, make sure all was travel-worthy.  She closed the boxes herself, placed the postal service's special tape on it.  When closed, taped... she placed the amount of postage on it.

The postal service clerk was so nice during all, so gentle when handling Jimmy's ashes... she spoke softly the whole time... she touched my heart with her respect.  Thank-you, postal clerk.

Happy traveling, Jimmy.  I don't even miss having 'you' here in my art room.  Do you know 'why?'  Because my promise is fulfilled... I feel good inside.... I did right.  You just can't have a better feeling inside than that.  I love you, Jimmy... rest in peace being with your mama.  I know you are smiling now.  I am, I think there may be ...tears in my eyes.

I have to think of a 'humorous, happy, tasteful, good' title for this.... one that I know that would have made Jimmy laugh... he loved a good laugh.

Will I name it ....'Have Jimmy Will Travel'...... 'Jimmy's In The Mail'........ I know in my mind........ I can 'see' his eyes twinkling, hear his laugh, his voice saying ..."by golly, I like it!"

My cousin, Jimmy, is on his final trip to be with his mother, he's in the mail..... Jimmy's in the mail!


  1. This is great! I had to mail my husband's ashes to be interred with his parents a few weeks after he died. His were split between here and there. He wanted me to leave a piece of him with our daughter. In his words, he did not want her to be all by herself here.

    It is definitely a fine way to travel.

    1. Hi Red,
      I think that beautiful... he didn't want her to be by herself here. Special. I know that must comfort her in times when one needs extra comfort. I could just 'feel' it. :))) Granny Gee/Gloria

  2. Hi Gloria----------

    Here is what I would write on your blog:

    I can just hear Jimmy now! He would say something like this: "I bet you have never traveled in the mail before! This is something I have always wanted to try." Doesn't that sound like something he would say? RIP Jimmy! Gloria you have always done what you said you would do. I don't know of anyone else that would keep such promises as you have kept. Love, Ms. Nancy

    1. Ms Nancy,
      Thank-you for your words. I am honored. Love, Gloria/Granny Gee