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Life

A release

07.27.05 | 6 Comments

I learned of my Granddaddy’s passing Monday evening. He had been sleeping most of the days and quietly stopped breathing, a peaceful exit that came as a shock to no one. My family doesn’t hold back on love, and we had communicated what needed to be said.

We mourn the loss. Death is always painful for the ones remaining. We also try to celebrate the life at once; my Dad ended our phone conversation Monday with, “Now go tell Joel some good Granddaddy stories.”

He was the kind of man you want to know. He never met a stranger. He served his country and the less fortunate, read stories to his grandkids, was a good friend and a hard worker, and always made clear that he thought the sun rose and set in his family. He always had a bright face and a glad “Hiya, Blakey!” for me.

I’m happy for him not to be bound by his body anymore. Being human is hard. Our brains are complex enough to anticipate the future and experience anxiety. We are able to analyze our situation while understanding that we have little control over some things. We miss people we love who are no longer with us. We feel pain.

It’s not that he surrendered. He looked at this condition and said, “Alright, I’m done here.” It’s my way of best dealing with how I feel, but I picture him frolicking with his parents, his seven siblings, his beloved wife. I miss him already. But he’ll never be far in my mind.

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