Two weeks from now everyone will be talking about St. Patrick’s Day but not me. It is my grandfather’s birthday, except this year he won’t be around to celebrate it with us.
He would have been 98 and had my grandmother not died he would still be here now. There is no doubt in my mind that grandpa died of a broken heart. They were married for 76 years and friends for 85.
Hadn’t really thought about his birthday yet but we had a school event that dealt with genealogy and his picture was part of a slide show. Actually all of my grandparents were in it and I couldn’t help but think about how strange it is to me to not have any left.
When I wrote The People We Miss I still had two living grandparents. When I wrote about Four Generations and a Wedding I was down to just one grandfather but I carried the others along with me. They all had their places in my heart.
It feels so surreal to me to think they are all gone now.
When I stood in the tux shop last summer I watched my grandfather marvel over my son. That boy of mine didn’t like putting on tux but I gave him a look and he stopped squirming. I couldn’t have been more proud, especially when I saw the joy in grandpa’s eyes.
But I also saw the pain and when I helped him put his jacket on I knew that he would tell me about how much he missed grandma. And I knew that there was a good chance that he wouldn’t hang on for the wedding. I am not angry with him for that. I can’t imagine what it means to be with someone for that long and not have them.
Changing of the Guard
When grandpa died it marked the end of that generation. They are all gone now. All the members of that generation in my family have moved on to wherever it is we go and the rest of us moved up. My parent’s generation has become the old guard and mine is just…older.
There is silence now that reminds me of endless blue skies. I can’t complain of them having had their lives cut short because they didn’t and they weren’t. But I can say that I miss them for a million different reasons not the least of which is I have lost my cheering squad.
My grandparents were always among my biggest supporters and I always knew it. They loved listening to me talk about my life and always wanted to know what was going on with me.
I noticed their absence today for another reason. A big opportunity presented itself. It is the kind of thing that could be exceptionally significant and something that I would have told them about. My grandfathers and I would have spoken about it in a hushed tone, can’t speak too loudly for fear of losing it.
Traveling Jack May Ride Again
Can’t say much more about it than I already have but am willing to share that I am excited. Excited and nervous, because…well I don’t want to jinx myself so I’ll be quiet. No need to put the cart in front of the horse.
So let’s take a moment for me to compose some thoughts. While I do that feel free to open a tab to check out the following songs:
When The Levee Breaks– Robert Plant & Allison Krauss
Battle of Evermore – Robert Plant & Allison Krauss
Gone Gone Gone (Done Moved On) – Robert Plant & Allison Krauss
I won’t back down – Johnny Cash
Maybe I’m Amazed– Wings
And we’re back. Spent a few minutes cruising through the blog and stumbled onto The Mother Of All Blog Posts Told By A Father and had to smile. I am consistent in my themes and messaging here.
But it is also a reminder to me that I need to continue to bear down and fight harder for the things I want. I need to continue to tell the people I care about they are important, significant and of value. I need to keep pushing to live my dreams and not dream my life.
And now it is time for bed. As I drift off to sleep I am going to think about the people I miss and tell them about the opportunities that have presented themselves to me. Wonder if I’ll dream about them.
Do you think that we get messages from “beyond?”
Do you believe in destiny? Is life a combination of destiny and free will?
Will the 7 year-old boy who made my daughter cry be smart enough not to really piss her off or will she rip his head off? He is playing with fire and not because I wanted to deal with him myself.
Well, we’ll have to save that story for later. It is almost 1 am and your favorite grumpy dad blogger is off to the land of ZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZZ