Saturday, March 10, 2007

Grand daddy

If you are bothering to read my blog, I'm assuming that you know me. If you know me, I am also assuming that you know my Grand daddy passed away on Wednesday after a long 2 & 1/2 year battle with lung cancer.

I'm going to bring up the conversation that we had last May (most of you were involved in the comments) about funerals and how people like to say goodbye.

I mentioned, in that previous May blog, that I hate funerals. I was drug to oodles of them as a child and it really had a huge negative impact on me. It was to the point that I couldn't sleep in my bedroom alone without horrible nightmares. My parents didn't get it (though they were supportive in comforting me), but even as an adult I still remember it all pretty well. I am not good at hopsitals either mind you, I spent way too much time in them as a kid. (I was a sickly little snot and had been in the hospital for sickness or surgery about 6 times by the time I was 6 years old) So I have these quirks and they're just me. What can ya do?

To repeat part of the earlier blog: I chose years ago after loosing both of my Mom's parents to stop going in to "view" the body of my loved ones. When I lost my MawMaw I was a teenager in Ohio on a mission trip, I didn't return home in time for the funeral. My goodbye to my MawMaw was the week prior to me leaving on my trip. I went to visit with a friend (Jeff Collins, great friend) and told her goodbye standing on her front porch, it's a vision I remember with 100% clearity. I hold it in my heart!! When I lost PawPaw I was there for the entire thing, in the house when he passed away and all that followed. At that point I hadn't taken it upon myself to stand up and let my voice be heard about my feelings. (Which is odd, because even when I was young I didn't have much trouble letting my opinions and feelings be known!) I did all that was expected of me, including viewing the body and staying in the room. Now, the first thought I think about (not the only one mind you) is of my PawPaw laying there in that casket. It takes me a few minutes to get the image out of my head before I can get to others.

Since then I have stood my ground and declined to "say goodbye" at a funeral home. My goodbyes come in whatever form I last saw the loved one. Those are my goodbyes, usually ones that are typical of all the visits that have come before and remind me of just another typical "I'll see ya soon". Afterall, as a christian (and thank the Lord most of my family and friends are a christian) I know without a doubt that it is just "see ya soon" when it's my turn to go to heaven too.

I said "see ya later, take care of yourself" to Grand daddy a week ago today. He was in the hospital and had been wearing his little "flat hat" when we got there. (That I have with me right now) He ate a little of his dinner (without his hat, because it's rude to eat with one on you know) and I joked that he ate his meals like me, after a few bites of a fish sandwich & some taters.. he dove into the lemon pie. As he told us "it's not too good", he ate every bite. We laughed about that on the way home. He said "well, they finally got her in the ground" about Anna Nicole as we watched the news and "they lived a too short life" about the college baseball players that died in the bus accident in Atlanta. He asked Andy about his recent helicopter flight and about changing jobs. He asked about our dogs, if the cat was home (always a topic of conversation around us with our runaway cat) and about my "little wagon". (What he called my durango- go figure) We talked and watched the news. There was a conversation about pain, suffering and death that I hope will fade with memory because it was heart breaking. It told me though that it was his time and with God's mercy, he wouldn't be with us much longer to suffer and be so depressed.

It wasn't long after my visit last weekend that he started talking about things that weren't relevant, not knowing who people were or where he was. It was the beginning of the very end - where he left for heaven on Wednesday morning, very calmly and without fuss.

He's in Heaven now, where I'll see him again someday. I'll miss him every stinkin' day of my life. Crazy little things make me think of him all the time and I'm sure the tears will become less frequent with time. I know he was greated by his heavenly father first of all. Then he was able to be reunited with so much of his family and great friends that were already there and waiting on him. I'm jealous that they get him now, but know I was blessed with him in my life at all!

"See ya soon" Grand Daddy!!


Traci said...

That was a nice honor to him Monica.