Monday, December 13, 2010

I have to celebrate you baby...I have to praise you like I should

Since Tuesday of last week I have tried to figure out how to come to terms with the death of my grandfather. Usually when something upsetting happens in my life my brain takes a turn for chaos. I'm sure I'm not alone in that respect. One minute I want to celebrate the man he was and the next I want to scream that it was too soon.  While I can't say it was unexpected, I can say it was sudden. Yes, they are different. In October he was diagnosed with Leukemia. He had started chemo and was for all intensive purposes headed in a good direction. Apparently there was a different plan for him, and he passed away in his sleep due to a heart attack. On Tuesday Lila, mom, Sara, and I piled up in my car and drove South to be with our family and celebrate John T.

Sitting amongst some of my family talking with the preacher about what would be said at the service, I found myself feeling like celebrating...not because Grandma kept saying we were blessed or because Sara read an essay she wrote about him in college. I felt like celebrating because that's where the chaos ended. Suddenly I just sort of knew that he would want us to laugh about him. And, through tears, that's what we did.

As I have posted, we went to my grandparents at Thanksgiving. At that time John T. had completely lost his hearing for various reasons. I had made my favorite pumpkin cupcakes and was eating one on the front porch talking to mom while John T. smoked a cigarette. I whole heartedly shoved the last big bite into my mouth and turned to find John T. right behind me. He started laughing and said quite loudly "I wanted to see what was in it!". It seems I ate it a little too quickly for him to get a good look and he thought that was pretty hysterical. Later, he ate a few of the cupcakes trusting that my hurry to devour one was reason enough to try them.

That silly kind of story is what I want to celebrate as often as I can. That child-like humor and simplicity that I see in my daughter every day is what I will always remember about him. That along with being called a nut, being told to go make mud pies in the backyard, and watching him tube on the back of a boat on his 70th birthday. I miss you John T...and I will laugh and celebrate you...from this picture I am guessing your great granddaughter will too.

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