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beaujarkko

A Sad Day

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Just wanted my TaT family to know that my brothers and I have suffered a loss recently, with the passing of my grandfather this past Friday.

He was almost 90, had dementia, had lived in Florida with little family contact for the last four years, and has been the victim of mini-strokes for a large part of that time. To say that he was really ready is an understatement. I'm not being cold, but merely pragmatic. When someone's "quality" of life is so severely depleted, that person's family can only dwell on the good times in the past and not the unfortunateness of the present condition.

My grandfather was a constant and supportive presence throughout my formative years. He and my grandmother (who passed away when I was only six) used to watch Wheel of Fortune with me and bought me a "Speak and Spell" (remember those) and many other things that I feel to this day have directly influenced my love for-- and voracious appetite to devour-- the written word. Even when he spent his winters in Florida, we'd communicate on the phone and via postcard (my grandparents taught me how to spell "appendicitis" long before I knew what an appendix was) and we'd share our WoF stories this way.

I still remember one time when I was about 10, I got the following puzzle while watching WoF with my grandpa:

R __ __ __ __ __ __ __ L __
__ __ __ __ __ __ __ L __

(category: Thing)

P.S. Answer at the end of the blog...

And Grandpa just looked at me and asked (not unkindly, with a smile): "How do you even know what that is?" He was so proud. I think I responded that I didn't even know what it was, but I had heard the term and had a vague knowledge of when to use it.

These are the kinds of memories that I want to remember, and certainly not the past few years where he's been (not his fault) absent and losing his memory. It's been a long few years for him, and now he's been reunited with his wife who loved him so dearly. I'm going to think about this and it'll make me very happy.

Please keep him in your thoughts tomorrow, as it's the funeral. I'm a little scared to see him, since it's been awhile... I'm afraid of how frail he'll look, as he was never a tall or stout man. Is it normal to feel that way? Hopefully he'll be wearing his favorite blue suit with his impossibly narrow favorite pair of Oxfords and I can look at him and see the grandfather who helped mold me into the person I am today.

You are missed.

Phil

P.S. The answer was "reasonable facsimile".

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Comments

  1. Drop-shot's Avatar
    Not much one can say but "strength Beau". And true strength includes acknowledging your feelings and even crying if you so feel like it.
    A wiser person said:
    "Don’t cry because it’s over. Smile because it happened."
  2. Kirkus's Avatar
    Awwww, Phil. I'm so sorry. My thoughts are with you and your family.
  3. mmmm8's Avatar
    I'm sorry, Beau. My condolences and thoughts for you and your family.

    You´ll always have those memories to treasure.


    (What is a reasonable facsimile?)
  4. Scotty's Avatar
    Great that you can remember the good times. Hopefully, that will the common thread of the funeral time with your family. I'm sure it's how we all want to be remembered. It's okay to cry a little too!
  5. aedra1119's Avatar
    I'm so sorry Beau. You and your family will be in my thoughts.
  6. mrjiggyfly2's Avatar
    tough one Beau. glad you have good memories
  7. nelslus's Avatar
    Hey, Beau:

    I am so sorry for your and your family's loss. Certainly know that all of you, including your grandfather, are in my thoughts and prayers. Please know that all that you are feeling- including being afraid to see him- is very much normal. And- thank you so much, in this time of grief, for sharing stories about your grandfather. I am so glad that you and your grandfather had these great times to share.
    Updated 11-03-2008 at 10:19 PM by nelslus
  8. Madame's Avatar
    Sorry Beau. The most important in such a day is stay close to your family. Love is the only comfort, and your grand dad was loved.
  9. morct's Avatar
    I think death of a loved one is so sad, even when it is a blessing. Hold on to your happy memories.
  10. evil_juju's Avatar
    Im very sorry about your loss, my thoughts are with you and your family. It's great to have such good memories, hang on to them,they can put a smile on your face when you least expect it.
  11. atlpam's Avatar
    Sorry for your loss - I can only hope that the funeral will be similar to that of my 97 year old Great Aunt who passed this summer - a very noisy group of people celebrating and sharing remembrances of the long life of a vibrant person who touched many others in her lifetime. You are living proof that your grandfather will not be forgotten.
  12. Danielle's Avatar
    I'm so sorry Beau...big hug to you and your family. I hope the service today helped you remember even more wonderful times with him. A part of him will always be with you given the influence he had in your life.
  13. jjnow's Avatar
    This is late, but I'm sorry for your loss, beau. Sounds like you have a lot of wonderful memories.

    And I see that I've now discovered the root of your freakish word talents. I had no idea it was familial.
  14. GVGirl's Avatar
    This is late, but I've been MIA. Sorry for your loss, I'm going through something very similiar. It isn't easy, even when you expect it.