I began working at EZ Rampz in February and was placed in charge of managing a warehouse filled with sites that we install several times throughout the year in New York. While the traveling can be cumbersome at times, I’m grateful for it because it’s allowed me to reconnect with my grandmother who I’d gotten to see less than a handful of times in the five years prior. I now see her several times a month and have built a better relationship with her than ever before. I wouldn’t say that I was any more selfish than any other child, but the relationship between her and I had always been one in which she gave, and I received. If I wanted some new and sugary cereal that my parents wouldn’t buy for me, I knew if I told grandma that she’d have a box waiting for me that summer when I came to visit. Now though, I have the chance to repay her for all the memories and smiles that she gave to me. I want to be able to make life more enjoyable for her now.
My grandma lives alone with limited mobility. Grandpa died a few years back in a shower accident. So I know firsthand the dangers she faces each day, and it worries me sick. Last time I was up there I saw her struggling down the stairs to her unfinished basement to try and surprise me by washing my clothes before breakfast – thankfully I woke up in time to stop her. The idea is an extremely sweet gesture by her, but significantly riskier with her mobility than you would think. Her process is to throw the laundry down a thirteen-step staircase, then walk backwards slowly while gripping a wooden rail that wobbles more than any support device has any right to. Finally, the battle is half done. She faces sideways and holds onto the rail tightly as she steps up a single stair at a time to return upstairs. The action is noticeably tiring for her and she stops after every handful of steps to rest, and cough. Somehow, she still must go back down to get the laundry and carry it back up the stairs as well. I don’t know how she manages this last step, as I’ve never let her do it while I’m present and able to do it for her. But I know she’s done it before on her own, and I know she’ll do it again. But not for much longer.