Tomorrow, as I’ve mentioned, I’m walking in the Alzheimer’s Memory Walk in honor of my Grandma Sara.

Grandma Sara, me, and Mom on Grandma's front porch.

Grandma Sara, me, and Mom on Grandma's front porch.

I’m about to go visit her now, but I’ll tell you, the visit is more for me and to make sure the nurses know she has family who visits her than it is for her. She won’t know who I am. If she’s having a good day, she’ll politely smile at me for a few seconds, and maybe say a word or two that doesn’t make any sense. She might laugh if I say something in the right tone of voice. But she won’t know I’m her only granddaughter.

She won’t understand when I tell her that, this past weekend, I went to the beach where she and my Grandpa Chuck used to vacation. They’d come down from La Porte, Indiana, where they lived all their lives, and go to Treasure Island, Florida. They stayed at the Trails End motel and ate at Gigi’s, which is now one of my favorite pizza places of all time.

Grandma Sara, Grandpa Chuck and me in Treasure Island, FL, 1983

Grandma Sara, Grandpa Chuck and me in Treasure Island, FL, 1983

She won’t remember the story about the last time they went, before Grandpa Chuck died. How I was three, and my mom and I came down for a week. How I jumped off the diving board into the deep end and nearly gave Grandpa a heart attack. How I fed bread to the seagulls and swam until my eyes were so irritated by chlorine I couldn’t open them in the sunlight for a whole day.

I’m nowhere near meeting my fundraising goal, but I’d still like to raise as much money for the Alzheimer’s Association as I can. I know times are tight, but if you have even just $5 you can donate, please consider doing so. It means a lot to me, and I know it would mean a lot to Grandma. If you can’t donate, but have a story you’d like to share about a grandparent or someone else special in your life, leave a comment — I’d love to read about it.

But, you know, if you want to donate, too, well, that would be swell.

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