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Grandma's Legacy

May 7, 2015
By Shasta Clark - Contributing Writer , OVParent

Grandparents, I hope you know how special you are.

You fill a role in that little person's life that no one else can fill. Ordinary things become amazing lifelong memories for them, just because you are there.

For me, plain old Thursdays became the best day of the week because, every Thursday, my grandma picked me up from school and I spent the night with her. As a kid, I loved that day so much that I vowed to get married on a Thursday. What day could possibly be better?

This Thursday will be the hardest Thursday I've ever spent with her. The nursing home called yesterday and said she has only days left to live.

So today, we are bringing her home to die, and I'm going to see her for the last time this side of heaven.

As I sit by her side and hold her hand, all I will remember are the wonderfully regular things that we did together on Thursdays, things that wouldn't have meant anything, except that I did them with her.

For supper, she let me eat TV dinners, not the home-cooked meat, potatoes and vegetables my mom always served; salads with iceberg lettuce, American cheese and bacon bits from a jar; and chocolate milk made with powdered Nestle chocolate. I still can taste the deliciousness.

She was a stickler on homework. I had to memorize Bible verses for school on Friday, and she made sure I memorized them perfectly. I paced her kitchen floor, repeating the verse over and over until I knew every, "ye," "shall" and "thou."

I took a hot bath; she always had bubble bath. We curled up together with a bowl of ice cream and watched "The Cosby Show." Then I got to sleep in her bed with her. No one gave better back rubs.

Our Thursday tradition, which lasted into high school, started when my grandfather died when I was in first grade. Looking back, I think it was my mom's way of helping my grandma with her loneliness.

In the end, my grandma didn't live a glamorous life. She didn't end up with a lot of money. She lived in the same three-bedroom house her whole adult life, the last 30 years alone. Yet she sure left a grand legacy with me. It was a legacy that started on a Thursday.

Shasta Clark is a St. Clairsville native who lives in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, with her husband, two sons and daughter. Her email address is



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