I wrote a Thanksgiving piece back in November that highlighted my grandparents and how amazingly awesome they are. I would like to reiterate that point now. My grandparents are full of life, love and faith. They are exuberant, generous, happy, family-oriented, supportive, reliable sages and I cannot possibly express how lucky I am to have them. I wish I had more free time just to spend with them – I feel like I could learn so much from them. Scratch that – I KNOW I can learn so much from them. I really just want to take a moment to talk about my grandfather.
My grandfather gives the best advice ever, because it makes you think – you cannot just blindly acknowledge it and move past it as you do with most advice. His advice is generally posed in a riddle of sorts, so you have to figure out exactly what he is saying. It gives you more time to appreciate the wisdom behind it. My grandfather also has an uncanny ability to just accept what is happening. He has lived enough of life to accept God’s will and know that some things cannot be changed, only accepted. Those moments in life when everyone is stressed and worried do not phase my grandfather in the same way. He will be the one sitting back and having a cup of tea as the world crumbles. He is also a strong individual, which I think shows in his acceptance of life. It takes a strong person not crumble under the pressure of the world.
He is also a man of very few words and fewer emotions. He has never told any of his children or grandchildren the words “I love you” but he has never had to. His sacrifices, thoughtfulness and daily action show each of us how much we mean to him. He is a living reminder that actions speak louder than words. He has taught each of his children and, in turn, grandchildren the value of hard work, the importance of charity, the meaning of family, the consequence (positive and negative) of sacrifice, the significance of intelligence and tolerance, the impact of loyalty and dedication and the meaning of dignity and integrity.
Last night I was standing in the grocery store trying to decide what to make for dinner when I received a text message from my mom. My grandfather had gone for some biopsy’s without telling anyone, he saw no reason to have anyone worry. The tests came back positive for cancer. I felt my whole world crash as I began to cry in the middle of a store while holding a random assortment of groceries. Nick was working a late shift so I went home and cooked food I didn’t want to keep my mind occupied. I opened beer after beer and picked on freshly baked cookies waiting for him to get home so I could curl up and just be held. A part of me has always known that I would lose my grandparents at some point, but I am not prepared to wrap my head around it being now. They are active and in good health for their age. People are often amazed to learn that my grandparents are in their 70’s. I am not ready to give them up. Perhaps I am being greedy, but then so be it, I still need them and I know I am not the only one.
The thing is when I called him to check on him he was his regular old self –
“What am I going to do Jelly? Just have to go for tests and find the best way to fight it, nothing else to do now; is there?”
I wish I could be half the amount of calm and accepting of life as he is… It’s so inspirational. For now, I will just keep praying and I ask that anyone who can, please does the same.