Film on my grandmother

Sabine und Ursula Jainski © P. Petrides
Sabine und Ursula Jainski © P. Petrides

How to say good-bye to my grandmother?

My grandmother is waiting for her 99th birthday. She has always been the center of our family, full of humour, good ideas, creative and spontaneous. She loved literature, but also motorcycles and punks. When I was small, she would invent papertoys for me, and we would build entire fantasy cities from almost nothing. She would tell me stories from her past and read loads of books to me.
Now she’s lying in her bed all day, she’s nearly blind and can hardly hear. But her mind is still alive, she’s joking and making fun when you least expect it. Although every movement hurts, she never complains and is always friendly with everybody. I ask myself: How would I live if I were in her place? Can she still enjoy life, or is she waiting for death to come? What does she think about life and death? I’m asking my family, but also herself and her best friend, who is just five years younger but has shared all her life. Many people dread a situation like this at the end of their lives, and they tend not to take old people seriously – but these two smart ladies will soon make you think otherwise.

If you’d like to watch the film, please write to me!

Omi und Renate klein
Ursula Jainski und ihre beste Freundin Renate Sonnen © Sabine Jainski

How to say good-bye to my grandmother
a film by Sabine Jainski
52 min., arte / NDR 2013