One of the highlights of my world is my weekly visit with my grandma. During these visits we do nails, share a meal, tell stories, watch game shows, and laugh. A lot.

This fiesty, sassy, simply FABULOUS human lives in a nursing home now… Usually her head is held high and she puts on a happy face. But other times…

Other times, she hurts during the slow and painstaking transition from wheelchair to assisted recliner.

Other times, she’s frustrated by her shaking hands as she works so hard to get the food from the plate to the fork to her mouth.

Other times, she shakes her head to remember the right name for a face.

Other times, she grimaces as I help her transition to the toilet…and more.

Especially the more.

After one of those visits — one that included such a stop in the restroom, complete with “more” — she sat back heavily, sighed deeply, and said “This getting old is hard. It’s all backwards. What I did for you as a baby, you have to for me now as an old lady.”

I looked into those beautiful eyes… into that beautiful heart… at the beautiful woman who has done so much for so many and I said, “It is my privilege.”

And her words have echoed ever since.

Getting old is to “get young” again. Instead of gaining skill, mobility and independence, it starts to fade… and this has got to be hard.

So very hard.

…so today, when I saw this – the page with cursive practice of her name. The pen held tightly yet tentatively. The shape of each letter carefully created on the page… I knew it was my privilege.

And I kissed her hands, and listened to her stories as I painted her nails.

…because getting old is hard.

But loving someone who’s old is one of the greatest privileges I know.