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Good Genes | Manolo for the Big Girl

Good Genes

Today I was sitting at work, staring absently at the old family photo on my desk, and realized that I am shaped exactly like my dear Grand-mere, may she rest in peace. In the photo, we are sitting in almost identical poses, with one hand resting gently atop the other — perhaps because the photographer placed us that way, I do not recall — and even the fat between our wrists and elbows are in the same places, in the same amounts.  We are just about the same height, and have near-identical figures.

Grand-mere was no beauty queen, but she was a strong woman, and an intelligent woman, and a she used to sing me to sleep, and she used to make me delicious crepes every time I came to visit, and I loved her. She died about a year and a half ago, and my eyes mist, still, whenever I think of her, because I miss her so.

One could do worse, than to look like my Grand-mere.

5 Responses to “Good Genes”

  1. Gradual Dazzle June 4, 2008 at 10:10 am #

    Hear, hear.

  2. Twistie June 4, 2008 at 11:25 am #

    I was named for my great-grandmother. I look exactly like her…well, she was taller and had skis for feet where I’m a short stuff and walk on little cubes, but other than that, I could be her clone. I also inherited her talent for baking and ability to laugh at nearly anything.

    All in all, there are a lot worse things I could have inherited.

  3. La Petite Acadienne June 4, 2008 at 4:08 pm #

    Your Grand-Mere WAS beautiful. Because love makes people beautiful, and you obviously loved her a lot.

    Your tale reminded me of my grandmother. She has had Alzheimer’s for 10 years and is a frail shell of her former vibrant, gorgeous self. She does not know me anymore, and it breaks my heart.

    Yet, I see her every time I look in the mirror — her apple cheeks, her wavy hair, her rounded belly and yes…her flat ass. But in my mind, I see what she was like as a person. When I see a good-looking man (Nanny has a real eye for the fellows — that’s one thing the Alzheimer’s has not taken away), I can almost feel her elbow nudging my side. She had the strongest hug I’ve ever encountered, and I could tell her anything — she never judged. She is the coolest grandmother ever.

    A grandmother with love in her heart is will always be one of the most beautiful women in the world, to the grandchild who was the lucky recipient of that love.

  4. Toby Wollin June 6, 2008 at 8:53 pm #

    I recently had the amazing experience of discovering that I don’t have the cousins I thought I had…but have added eight, a truly mind boggling experience of going from thinking all my life that all I had in terms of extended family in this world a)lived on the East coast and b)consisted of two cousins that I did not get to see very often. And, in the ensuing “I am xxx to you” business, I saw a photograph of one of these newly added families and I showed it to one of my daughters and she spoke the words that were in my head, “Mom..you can so tell that they are part of the family…look at those chins.” And then I compared their chins to our chins and then to a photograph of my great grandmother and grandfather and their family in the Ukraine before WWII. And there it was, my great grandmther, who I am named for, in her babushka, with that same chin. There is nothing I tell you like the feeling that there is some physical thread that binds one to others in the family. It’s like they were always there and I always knew them…strangers no more.

  5. Eilish June 7, 2008 at 3:26 pm #

    “Charm is deceptive and beauty is fleeting.” Not bad, not good, beauty is simply fleeting. As your post reminds us, real beauty, the kind that we develop in our characters, in our love for others, is real and lasting and truly what our loved ones remember.

    Your grand-mere sounds like a beautiful person. I think we can all aspire to be remembered as she is.