19 November 2010
In loving memory of Barbara Jean Culbertson Cobler
My grandmother passed away today.
She went into the hospital yesterday, fell into acoma at noon and passed at 1:56 pm PST.
She is survived by her two children, my mom and my uncle Chuck, her grandchildren, myself and my cousins Misty, Krystle and Joey and her great-grandchildren Krystle's daughter Miss London (who I swear has grandma's facial expressions) and Misty's kids, Angel, Khristian and Aidan.
My grandma was a rebel, she was born in the 1930's and by the 1950's was expected by society to be a housewife. She chose to work. She worked at the hospital in the lab and eventually began to do autopsies. Anytime you were sick or had something wrong, she knew what it was and how to fix it . . . the first time.
She was strong willed and never took crap from anyone. She was the President of the Eagles and enjoyed traveling and doing things all over Iowa.
Her cancer started in her colon and progressed to her spine and eventually to her lungs. This is the exact same way cancer took my grandfather.
There are things about my grandmother I will never forget. The way she answered the phone, she always put an mmm before saying hello. And her answering machine was so choppy, You. have. reached. Barb. and. Chuck. Cobler. . . . then of course you hear Barren in the background barking.
She decorated for every season. And she had a pair of dorothy's ruby red slippers as a magnet on her fridge and a Mother Mary shrine in her hallway (small and tasteful).
At thanksgiving she boiled the turkey gizzard, liver and heart and then just popped them in her mouth like candy. Always grossed me out.
She loved the old black and white movies. I remember her watching "Murder She Wrote" as well. She had one of those beds with the remote to adjust the head and foot height and angle. I loved that bed.
She was always two weeks late sending your birthday card. She had this keychain that said Barbara and was white with this funky foil that was all different colors. She was always up before everyone, sitting in the kitchen with her coffee. Her nails were always neatly manicured and she always went down to the beauty parlor in town to get her hair done, and that's where she would get all the town gossip. (Yes we are from the midwest and a small town at that.)
She wanted to pass in her own way, she wrote her own obituary and kept telling us she wanted to be cremated because she didn't want anyone looking at her when she was dead.
She loved all of us very much and we knew it. I just hope she knew how much she was loved as well.
Growing up she told me never to focus on getting married. Focus on work and doing the things that I wanted to do. She taught me to be selfish, in a good way.
After I found out she had passed I took a walk, it was weird but I had this incredibly sense of peace come over me. Whatever it was I hope it was her way of telling me she is ok and no longer in pain. I know she will be with me in all my crazy life adventures in the future.