My maternal grandma passed away about a month ago and my granddad passed away in 2012. I spent the last week going through photographs that I had captured of them over the last 15 years and edited them down to around 50 photographs. Many of the earlier photographs were taken on B&W film when I first started dabbling in photography. There are still quite a lot of images of both of them on my filed negatives that have not been scanned in.
The task of going through and selecting images of my grandparents was quite an emotional experience. The photographs triggered many memories. Aging is a difficult process and many of the photographs show it.
Grandpa suffered a stroke in 2010 which totally changed his quality of life though his mind remained lucid right to the end. He loved to talk and the stroke left him speechless. He loved his food and the stroke stripped him of the ability to eat. He relished oysters and I remember my grandpa polishing off a whole load of raw oysters as his main during a lunch treat I gave him and Mama! Subsequently, I got a scolding from my aunt because my grandpa had the runs after the meal. But Grandpa and I thought it was worth it because he throughly enjoyed it and that was the last time he ever ate oysters. He was bedridden about a year after the stroke which must have been really hard on him because he had always enjoyed going out on his own.
Mama started showing symptoms of dementia in 2012. She had a bad fall which left her face badly bruised 2 months before my grandpa passed away in 2012. In 2014, the physiotherapist accidentally snapped her left thigh bone during a home therapy session and from then onwards, she was bedridden. Whenever we visited, she would be sleeping most of the time and it was always nice when she opened her eyes even though she gradually lost recognition of any of us.
I am glad that I took the effort to take the photographs. They are a good record for me of my grandparents and I find even the photographs of the more difficult times beautiful in their own way. It reminds me that life is made up of both happy and sad moments, how fleeting our lives are and how much I should treasure and be thankful for family.
Together with the 2 posts I did on their funerals (see Farewell Grandpa and Farewell Mama), this post is a tribute to my wonderful maternal grandparents. My family is part of the legacy that they have left behind. The following are a selection of photographs of them.