First of all, I’m talking about the day of the week and not the lame ass dancing chick who’s ruined the legacy of said character by creating a viral 90 second dance with over 30 jump cuts. Yes, I know she’s an actress and was only doing what the director told her to do. No one ever blames Tim Burton for anything, though. It’s like he got a lifetime pass with Beetlejuice. I swear. Tik Tok people are impressed by just about anything. Film editors are magicians, and you fell for their Netflix trickery. She is a cutie, though…
Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way…
It’s a rainy day in North Texas. Dreary with a hint of meh. So dreary, in fact, that the pan handlers stayed home rather than staking out my neighborhood 7/11. Yes, all ye who seek to be social justice warriors, pan handlers have homes. Most of them anyway. It’s a swindle. Don’t let them fool you. Always look at their shoes. If their shoes look new AF, they have a dry closet to keep them in. This is right up there with fake cowboys from Dallas buying Ford F350 trucks just to park them in front of their condos. Not a speck of dirt.
Or, I could be wrong. Totally my prerogative either way. Get your spoon out of my Kool Aid. You don’t even know what flavor it is!
I’m a little bummed out because I must attend my grandmother’s funeral today. She was the last of my grandparents which means my parents are next. Sorry mom and dad, it’s a factual inevitability. Nothing personal. After my parents, then it’s me. I’ll let that sink in for a second. Not for you guys. No, I’m sure a few of you can’t wait for me to fall over gasping. I meant for myself.
My grandmother was an amazing woman. She was a retired police dispatcher and one of the sweetest people you’d ever met. She kept my brilliant, yet hardheaded grandfather in check after my paternal grandmother passed on in 1993. Even though my family was skeptical at first, we all learned to love her. That was thirty years ago.
My grandfather left us about five years ago after living a long, fruitful life as well. He was a retired fire fighter and carpenter. I don’t believe there was ever a day when I didn’t see him busy. I think he slept with his eyes open. He LOVED fishing, as did most men from his generation. We fished together a lot when I was a child and have some wonderful memories associated with it. Still, when he left, my grandmother was just biding her time.
She was ready to go. She would explain this to you like someone waiting on a bus to arrive. Almost like death had a predetermined schedule and she could hear it coming around the corner. No, she wasn’t erratic or suicidal in any way, she just knew her time was near, and she was prepared. No fear.
Why wasn’t she scared? Most fear death and will do anything to avoid it at all costs!
She lived a long, productive, loving life. She was proud of who she was and what she did. When you’re done, you’re done, and she was done. She’d seen and done everything she wanted to do on this planet and knew deep down it was time to move onto the next adventure. So brave.
Although there will be sorrow from some today, I know this is exactly what she wanted at this point. I’m happy knowing she lived and died on her own terms and she left no unfinished business. My grandmother may be the only person I ever met who could say that.
Knowing who C. Derick Miller is, I’ll probably leave behind a dozen half-finished projects and maybe a few I never speak of. I might even create a few just for my family to discover after I’m gone as they creep all through my computer and storage devices. I bet a lot of you don’t know I’ve penned a Starving Zoe sequel that will NEVER be released in book form. Maybe you’ll get it after I’m gone when one of my kids has a light bill due or something. Maybe you’ll get it in the form of a movie, a television show, or even a video game. You never know. Either way, my eternal baggage will burden others long after I’ve slipped off into a dirt nap.
In the end, I have miles to go before I sleep, and none of those miles will be used to pay royalties to the Robert Frost estate. My life has been nothing but a struggle since the moment I decided to become a professional writer, but not all struggles are bad. It keeps me on my toes, makes me strive for bigger and better things, and makes me proud of myself. On occasion. Not often. I wouldn’t want to spoil the ending of this journey.
So, today, I’m traveling back to my hometown of Greenville, Texas to pay tribute to a woman who did things on her own terms rather than the terms of others. I do so on the day following a major milestone in my own life/career and I don’t even want to talk about it. At all. What a rollercoaster of a week so far.
Buy the ticket, take the ride?
Fuck that. Buy the ride and charge admission.
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