by Jonah

Christmas day my extended family and I were in my grandfather’s van, driving to New Orleans, where a plane would take me on a prized trip to Colorado. My grandmother sat in the middle seat, commenting about things to everyone in particular, while no one really wanted to listen. I made snide remarks to match each irrelevant one of hers, but only my dad sitting next to me in the drivers seat could catch them. “Stop it,” he warned but couldn’t stop himself from laughing. “Respect your elders,” he choked between convulsive gasps for air among hysterical chuckles but then broke into a fit of coughing brought on by my next joke.

A week later, I was sitting in a snow covered house in Colorado, letting the information sink in that my grandmother had suffered a severe stroke at our kitchen table.

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