Since I have been alive, very few people I've been associated with have died. Even fewer that I've been related to have died. It's always such a shock to me. So, it seems strange that when my mother sent me a text earlier today to let me know that my dad had found my grandfather in his bed at home having died, I wasn't at all surprised.
He would have been 90 in March. He couldn't see very well since he only had one eye to begin with and I'm not sure it wasn't covered in cataracts. He had been grieving the death of my grandmother since she died from cancer and the related illnesses nine years ago. Every year on the anniversary of her death, I would comment to my mom, "It amazes me he hasn't gone from grief yet."
But now he's gone. And I'm sure the sadness will hit at some point, but all I can picture right now is my Grandpa in heaven, with two good eyes (one was put out at birth from doctor error before the days of suing the pants of every one) and just ridiculously happy to see the face of Jesus, and his wife. I imagine she's asking him what took him so long. She always was a bit bossy.
How can I be sad when I know he's so stinking happy?
So, just so I will remember these things as I get older and my memory fails, here are a few things about my grandpa:
1) He had the longest earlobes on the planet. We used to just sit and play with them. (Don't judge, toys were scarce at Grandma and Grandpas.)
2) The man could garden like no body's business.
3) He loved a fat basset hound and had several while I was growing up and a grown up for that matter. Sorry mom, I guess now YOU have a fat basset hound. =)
4) He would tell you his favorite number was forty-eleven and his favorite color was purkle.
5) He loved Jesus.
6) He loved my Grandma.
7) He loved to decorate at Christmas. (I think this must be a gene that runs in the family.)
8) I still remember what he looked like when his hair was black. I didn't even notice that it had turned white for along time.
9) He was a good man all around.
10) A list can't end with 9. I'll miss you Grand Dad. Give Gma hugs for us all.