In the past I have written several times about my grandparents. I am one of the lucky people who has had them around for my entire life. As of May 9, I will be 36 years-old and my grandparents will all be 91.
Ninety-one years-old. It just blows my mind. They were born during World War I and lived through the Depression, WWII, Korea, Vietnam, The Moon Landing, Watergate, the rise and fall of communism, 911, two Gulf Wars and a boatload more.
Tonight at our seder I paid very close attention to all three of them. I watched and listened to everything they said and did because right now it feels like we are in a race that we know will end but we cannot see the finish line.
My grandmother is not doing real well. She has had a number of issues with her heart and the cardiologist has said that she expects that it will give out before the rest of her does. Sooner or later her card will be pulled and it will be time to say goodbye.
But life is funny in that you cannot really plan on too many things following a schedule. We don’t know when it will happen, we can only guess and I am not someone who lives my life in fear. It could be years or it could be minutes, but it is hard.
It is hard to know that my children will just never know my grandparents the way that I do, that they will always see them as being old people. I remember when they could run with me and when they would get down on the floor and play with us. I remember them in their 50s and 60s and in some ways it is hard to reconcile the reality that the elderly people I speak with are the same people who pulled me in my wagon and baked cookies with us.
So I sit here soaking it all up, trying to do nothing but enjoy the time we have because it will end and then the memories will be all I have. But it is hard when I see my grandmother like this, knowing that mentally she is all there but physically she is losing the fight. Inch by inch there are little pieces of her being taken away. I try to do what I can to give her strength and support, but this is not a video game, I cannot give her some of my life force.
But I do what I can and I smile when I see the joy on her face when she plays with my children. It really is a time to eat drink and be merry, because tomorrow is a mystery.