No one teaches you how you deal with grief...especially when it is for someone you barely knew. I never really had the opportunity to get to "know" my grandparents - not because they weren't around, but due to unforeseen to circumstances. My grandfather passed when I was very young, and my grandmother suffered a stroke before I was born, leaving her partially paralyzed and unable to speak. My grandmother, Betty, is in her last few days of life...and despite 25 years of little-to-no communication, it is in these moments, that I feel closer to her than ever before. I forgot that she was once a 25 year old woman like myself, full of dreams and desires that were not afforded to her due to the fact that she was both female and black in 1950s America. I am reminded that there was a time before my grandmother became a mother and a grandmother... a time that means more than just a series of photos with stories, told and retold. In the past few weeks these photos, that I once overlooked, contain a smile that belongs to a woman to whom my life is indebted to. Now, these photos somehow make me feel an intrinsic, deep love for a woman I wish I had known. I have found a new level of compassion inside myself for the life she once had and the allllll things that she always wanted to do. If I do anything right in my life, let it be to live out my days for the life of Betty, my grandmother, and all of the things she dreamed.