Dear Memaw: A Letter I Wish My Great-Grandmother Could Read

I wish I could tell you about your piano, Memaw. It is quite the story. But since I can’t tell you, I tell Him, each day, and thank Him for it.

I guess I’m writing this letter more for me than for you. I guess I’m writing it because I needed to be reminded that God orchestrates even the tiniest details, like your old piano, to accomplish His perfect plan. Maybe that’s what comforts me the most when I sit on that creaky bench each day. That He even considered how a piano that belonged to a woman who couldn’t read music would help a little girl who loved hymns fight nightmares and panic attacks decades later.


Dear Memaw,

I wish you were here right now, sitting across from me. I wish I could have known your laughter and smile or your humor that I’ve heard so much about. I wish I could’ve seen you in person, with your short stature and realize that my 5’3″ body is a little picture of who you were. Everyone says I look like you. I wish I could’ve told you all about the books I read, my friends, or my dreams.

But I can’t do those things, not yet. One day I will though, one day when I reach Immanuel’s land, I’m going to tell you all about it. But of all the things I wish I could tell you right now, there is one in particular that drove me to write this letter.

I wish I could tell you about your piano.

You see, when I was a little girl, I remember going to Mimi’s house and sitting on the bench with Auntie Em and pretending to play. I remember thinking the chips on the ivory keys were somehow symbols differentiating notes. (I later learned they were merely the result of Daddy racing his matchbox cars down them when he was a little boy.) I used to dream about what it would be like to sit down and just let my fingers dance across the keys filling the room with melodies.

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