Laughter Echoes From the Grave …

Laughter Echoes From the Grave …

By Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee/@GeeGranny on Twitter



Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny as a young, beautiful woman who never took happiness for granted.




Ha! Ha! Ha!  Did I hear an echo of laughter from the other side?  It came from nowhere that I can see … I looked carefully.

I just got kicked in the teeth by someone I was told not to trust.  My Grandma Alma told me not to trust that person.  What happens?  Through time … be damned if she wasn’t right!  How did she know?  I thought I heard laughter … from the grave!

My first cousin told me that I had the wrong impression of someone who used to be in our family … I thought that person was truly good, and had loved her all through the years.  My cousin tried to warn me by saying, “Gloria, she’s not what you think she is”.  I would just nod my head showing I heard her.  I never wanted to argue.  I felt sorry for that person … she only showed me her ‘good’ side.

My first cousin got killed in a freak accident.  A log truck hit her head-on.  She didn’t get to tell me more about the person she told me wasn’t who I thought she was.  She didn’t have to … I began connecting the dots.  Oh, how right she was!  Ha! Ha! Ha! Did I hear an echo of laughter?  Did it serve my ass right?

Another first cousin told me about another family member saying don’t ever trust that person.  She’s the wicked witch of the west.  She’ll sweeten you up for the kill, stab you in the back … eat you!  She’ll try to find all your weaknesses, cut your legs out from under you.  Well … I never trusted that far to find out … never will.  I never heard an echo … none at all.  I pray he rests in peace.

He’s not the sweet, good person you think he is.  He’s been in your family for years, and you think he’s so good.  He’s really mean, ugly to your ……..  he does things he shouldn’t … has, throughout the years.  Why he even went with your ………. ‘s girlfriends! and ex-wife!  Disbelief … I learned by seeing, listening to the ‘horse’s mouth’.

Yes, he did all those things, and more.  Did I hear his laughter from the grave … do I hear the words, “I fooled you, bitch”!  I hope not … I always gave respect, geniune love that might not have been deserved … then again, that person treated me very good.

At one time in my life he made possible for me to have a home to come to as a young woman.  I was, and have always been grateful.  He never treated me out of the way … never.  So, for the person I thought he was … I’ve never regretted loving, respecting him.

He always treated me good … until at the last.  The last several years of his life … when I actually saw, heard from his own mouth … him dating and asking one of my …………’s girlfriends, and ex-wife to marry him.  The reason he wanted me not to see, hear, be around was … he saw his actions broke my Heart.

He actually told me things … he was embarrassed but, he had new-found freedom … I sat, listened quietly … not letting the pain, grief, disappointment show.  Somebody was right before they died … I don’t hear laughter from … her grave.  I only feel sadness.

I can’t tell you the grief in my Heart for so many close family members who have died … all in just a matter of maybe 8-10 years … some dying close together… not only on my mother’s side of the family … on my father’s side, also.   That’s not counting some of our Pups we used to have, love with our Hearts.  That’s not counting the friends we truly loved, cared about.

I truly loved, cared about every one of these people who died … as a child.  I even loved them after being mistreated by some of them … I grieved for them after each died.  Strange enough … the ones I loved most … as a child … have died.  The very shaky foundation my young life was built on … pure crumbled.

There are some family members living today … I loved them with my Heart as a child … in adult life … we’ll never see nor be a part of each other’s lives.  It’s the natural ‘hate thing … natural distrust’ we all inherited in our make-ups.  Love is there … but, there’s no way anyone would, could know it.

I have a brother I love who lives not 5 miles away … I’ll never talk to, see him again in his/my life.  I have another brother … same thing.  Isn’t life sad?  There’s no way it can happen.  No love, but love-hate … no trust … no foundation to meet on … all crumbled away with time.  Family members being jealous, or in-laws … separation as children, not growing up together … no bonds to hang onto.  The young, tender bonds were snapped, stretched through time when growing up apart … when they broke, that was it.

Life is sad … this said … I will say I love each one in my Heart … I have already accepted such some time ago … I’ve coped with it … and let go.  It’s all one can do … I can’t just … lay down and die because I can’t have family relationships … of course … I wouldn’t.  I’ve come too far, coped with too much to  … just give up.  I have my Grandma Alma’s fighting spirit … it isn’t there ‘for nothing’.

I must have some purpose in life … though I’ve never figured it out all these years.  Only once did I ‘figure out why’ … when I survived cancer.  That was when I began getting recovering from cancer.

Skip was diagnosed with cancer in the 3rd year I was beginning to grow stronger … I ‘knew’ it was for me to care for him just as he did me … he could see I was recovering from being near the edge of death … and he could do the same.  I remember telling him right in the oncologist’s office after she told him … ‘now, I know ‘why’ I made it.

I should have died 16 years ago with non-Hodgkins lymphoma.  Skip had colon cancer … he is a 14 year cancer surviver … colon cancer.  We survived … cancer.

Do you know what was most strange about those years of fighting for my life?  Not one family member … ever knew or acknowledged how sick I was.  They would drive right by the house we lived in … if Skip happened to have me outside on the porch … they would wave cheerfully, never missing a beat.  No one ever stopped, nor called.

I am amazed thinking back at that.  My mother would care sometimes … then, her youngest sister would make her think I wasn’t sick.  Jealousy … pure jealousy.  Her youngest sister always was jealous of any of her sisters’ children.  Her tongue was her weapon … mean, evil words came from her mouth … yet … she could say loving words, caring words that would melt my Heart.

She wanted her sisters to always have their attention on them.  The good thing is I wasn’t aware of this until several years later.  My mother said her youngest sister would always call me ‘The Queen’.I never became angry … I could only feel deep sadness.  I still loved her.  I wanted her to love me, too. She secretly hated me, was jealous of me.  I won’t even go into things she did to hurt me, then pretend she never meant to.  I wasn’t the only daughter she did that to …of her sisters’ children.

I could keep on writing as more memories float to the surface like bubbles in the ocean.  My writing begins to go on this path, that path in my life through time.  I will stop here.

Sometimes, when I learn something in life … or find out something it seems everyone knew but me … I wonder if I hear echoes of laughter.  Echoes of laughter fromt the graves of my … loved ones.

Note by this Author:

Photo/story owned, written by me, Gloria Faye Brown Bates/aka Granny Gee.

Grief, pain are old friends of mine … I don’t think I ever knew life without them after the age of nine.  They were all I had to hold onto … happiness were those brief times of sunshine in my life.

Happiness was something I always felt wasn’t meant for me … I used to think I wasn’t good enough, important enough.  I never take happiness for granted.  I enjoy it for all it’s worth when it happens in my life.  🙂  It’s sort of like when being a little girl … I knew Barbie Dolls were for other little girls … I knew somehow, they were never meant for me.  I, also, knew that other little girls could be in the Brownies … it wasn’t meant for me to.  I knew I wasn’t good enough.

It’s a good thing we grow up … cope with painful things in life … learn to live, handle all.  I think I did well.  🙂  That’s why when I was beautiful in my younger life … it meant the world to me … I was ‘good enough’ for … everything.  I had everything and everybody liked, wanted me.  Isn’t life sad?

People love material things … and if they think they can get something from someone … they will grovel at their feet.  Just watch beautiful, ‘rich’ people … just watch yourself … you will find that you do the same thing.  Life is life … it is what it is.  You might not like it … but, it’s the way humans are.

Oh … I wonder if I hear echoes of laughter from the graves of my loved ones?  I remember being told as a beautiful, young lady I used to be told … ‘don’t get so high up … the higher you go … the harder you fall’.  I fell hard … Ha! Ha! Ha!

Isn’t life sad?

You Wouldn’t Know Death Was Lurking Over My Shoulders … If I Didn’t Tell You

Can you see Death looking over my shoulder?  Can you see the warrior in this photo?
Can you see that all isn’t as it appears?  Did you know that for 16 years I couldn’t look at these photos?

I have been digging up old photos that I’m even fortunate enough to still have.  The house fire of December 28, 2004 burned all of our belongings.

The photos were in a big suitcase upstairs in the big, historic house we lived in.  The man who owned the house put a new box on the outside of the house, didn’t replace the old, out-dated wiring in the house.  He told us after we moved in.

The stairs were burnt, and unstable after the fire.  I wanted to go up those steps to see if there was anything at all to save in Tommy’s room, and to get the photos.  The fireman wouldn’t let me when it was burning.

I waited until I was the only one at the house to salvage through the rubble to find anything that was left to show we had a life there.  There was very little.  I meant to go up those stairs … go up them I did.

The sad thing was we were looking for what was ours in the burnt shell of the house, on the ground … everyone was driving by, stopping to see what they could find that was ours … and taking it with them.

People were stealing from a house that burned down … stealing anything they thought was of value.  Some people didn’t know me … I watched them steal.  Why didn’t I tell them to go?

I was in shock … if you’ve never been in shock … I can’t tell you how it does one.  You aren’t yourself … not at all.  You are in a world where everything is quiet, far away … you are in a vacuum that is trying to protect you.  You see, hear … at a distance even if you are … right there.  Your soul is numb.

I would never have the nerve to let my face be seen doing at someone’s home that had just burned down … stealing.  The sad thing was … I knew some of them … if you are reading this now, I won’t ever forget.

Not only that, our neighbors were also, telling us who stopped to look for anything to take away with them.  Shame on you for stealing, kicking someone in the face while they were down.

Truthfully, it doesn’t matter any more … I let go of that anger several years ago … when Tommy died, I forgot everything.

I went up those stairs, grabbed the big, heavy suitcase.  I prayed that the weight of it, and myself … wouldn’t go crashing through the steps.  The suitcase was dripping water … water from the firemen’s hose.

The photos were ruint … there was black, wet and messy charring, and soot.  I took the photos out and began trying to separate them.

They had stuck together … it took weeks to salvage as many photos as I could.  I had to cut, trim photos.  I put them in a pan of water to try to get them apart.  It was awful, but I managed to save a lot of them.

So when you see damage of any kind to a photo of mine … know that it’s from the house-fire.  I’m lucky I have them to show we had a life prior to the house fire.

I found about 4 photos I never could look at closely.  Why?  Well, they were taken at a time I didn’t want photos taken of me.  I didn’t have any hair … and I’m a female.  The photos hurt me deeply … I knew I could never let anyone see them … even let myself look at.

The strange thing is I just discovered the photos …. they were taken during the 3 year period of time I battled cancer.  My enemy was non-Hodgkins lymphoma … I fought like Hell to win.  I won.

I was just told by the oncologist last week that I shouldn’t be here … well, I’ve survived 16 years and 98% patients died from what I had.

The photos … I made myself look into them … look into my face.  I couldn’t believe it … I couldn’t see Death lurking around me, but … it was.

I couldn’t see that the photos don’t look bad at all.  I couldn’t see that I didn’t look hideous with the beautiful human hair wig Skip chose for me to look like my own hair.

I never looked at the photos until 16 years later … during the past several days.  Now, I can see that those photos aren’t awful at all.  I look normal … you wouldn’t know I had a beautiful wig on unless I told you.

You wouldn’t know Death was lurking around me when you looked at them … if I hadn’t told you.

Note by this author:  I own all photos you see on my stories, posts, blogs.  All stories I write in my words, I also … own.  Gloria Faye Brown bates/aka Granny Gee/@grannygee