By Lisa Cavanaugh (‘22)
Marguerite Yvonne Bernier Grenon was not only my Memére, but my best friend. She passed away on September 18th of 2010. At the time of her passing, I was only 10 years old; I was not given the opportunity to write a few special words about her for her. But now, I have the chance to share some memories and express my love and dedication for her to you all today.
My Memére was always by my side, even while I was still in the cradle. We would do everything together. She was my entertainer; Songs were sung, books were read, clothes were sewn together, and crépes were made. As soon as I was old enough to spell complex words and phrases, my Memére introduced me to the game Scrabble. We’d play that game all afternoon. Being as smart as she was, I would always come out as the loser but I didn’t care. Seeing how proud she was of me when I made a decent word, or an uncommon word, made me feel proud.
On nice sunny days, we’d go for walks and I’ll never forget about stopping at the little convenience store at the end of her street. We’d sit side by side on one the outdoor benches and split a Kit Kat that she had just bought us. Discussing what the best part of the day was and talking sweet nonsense to pass the time was always my favorite. In the evening, you could always find us on the couch watching Wheel of Fortune. Relaxing on the couch watching TV and eating air popped popcorn drowned in butter and salt was always the best way to end a long day of excitement.
My Memére was always there for me. She was one I could look up to, one I could trust, and one I could tell stories and secrets to; She was my best friend. Every day, I wish I had one more chance to express my love and dedication for my Memére. Those brief, but simple memories may seem like nothing, but it’s those nothings in life that we take for granted. If I could go back and have one more conversation with her on that bench, I’d do it in a heartbeat. I’d love to hear her call me “Mademoiselle” one more time. I’d love to tell her how far I’ve come in my life. I’d love to be squeezed in her arms and receive a dozen kisses just one more time. I wish I could’ve been able to see her one last time before she passed, but it was not God’s will. I know she knew of my endless love and admiration for her, but her knowing is not the same as me being able to physically and verbally express it.
At her funeral, I was asked to read aloud a prayer in dedication for her. There is a quote that I will always remember: “I have fought the good fight. I have finished the race.” In order to finish life’s race, there will always be a fight. My Memére did in fact fight the good fight and she did in fact finish her race. She was able to live a long life surrounded by those who loved and cared about her. She has made a permanent impact on everyone’s lives, especially mine.