One of my favorite mountains to visit is Stone Mountain near Elkin, NC. This huge granite dome stands 600 feet in the air showing off it’s beautiful flowing stripes. It is more than just a giant rock to me though. It is a place that I have come many times to heal my soul.
My grandmother came to live with my family and I shortly after we moved to North Carolina in 1994. She remained with us for the last eighteen years of her life. I still remember clearly that morning I walked into find her slumped on the floor, mumbling incoherently. She slipped into a coma that she would never wake from before reaching the hospital. A brain hemorrhage the doctor said. Nothing he could do except make her “comfortable”. That was the beginning of thirteen of the hardest days I have ever had to go through. During that time I found strength that I never knew I had to keep it together, and put on a brave front for my family. Time seemed to stop as I watched my grandma wither away to nothing. Then came the 3am call from hospice. She finally was at peace.
The next week went by as if a dream or rather a nightmare. I had funeral arrangements to make and pack her things but finally I had a moment to breathe. I went where I knew I could let myself say goodbye to my grandma in my own way.. Here on this mountain, I sat on the rock, and cried for the person who had always picked me up after a fall, kissed my bruises and had loved me unconditionally. I left go of the guilt that maybe there was something else I could have done. I cried until there were no more tears.
A little over a year after my grandma passed, my grandpa joined her. Again I visited this mountain to find peace and mourn. This is where I still feel their love surrounding me when I visit.