Wednesday, March 21, 2012

the things we remember

On Tuesday morning, heaven gained an angel. A man who was good to his fellow man, and a man who loved people left this earth...and I am dealing. I thought it would be easier seeing him ready to go. Then again, many things seem easier until we actually do them.

My grandfather was special to me for so many reasons. First of all, we shared the same birthday. In 7 days I'll be 31. In 7 days he would have been 90. He used to take Holly and I to Pizza Hut. He would cut my pizza up into bite sized pieces; the same way he did my steak when he grilled out for us at his home.

I remember once he and grandmother took Holly and I to Krystal's. I was probably 7 or so. There was a creepy guy who kept staring at me. My grandfather never touched his food. He sat with his hand balled into a fist the entire meal. When the man left, I caught him writing down his car tags as we left the parking lot.

I was baptised on Palm Sunday. My grandfather was so proud that day. He and my grandmother came to church to see my baptism and afterwards we went back to our house for a big celebration lunch. As we were walking in, he pulled me into one of his strong hold bear hugs. He told me with tears in his eyes how happy he was to see this happen.

When I started playing sports, my grandfather came to see me play. The first home run I hit, he found and made me sign it. He kept it until it dry rotted and then peeled the leather off and kept it.

When I got into high school, he took me and Holly to the Orange Bowl. It was a miserable loss to Penn State. I was being a sourpuss after the game, and he told me cheerfully that there was always next year and to never be a sore loser. (Still working on that one, Gia.)

The year after I graduated, I was car less. He loaned me a red blazer. (The hood he had painted himself with house paint. didn't match at all.) I drove that thing until the transmission literally fell out of it. He wasn't thrilled, but he never raised his voice to me.

When I got married, he was there...tears in his sweet blue eyes. Smiling like the sunshine.

When my father died he was there. He lifted me up, and loved me.

He always loved me. I always knew it.
I always loved him. He always knew it.

I miss him terribly already. My world won't be the same again.

I love you, Gia. Always and forever. Save some beer and pizza for me.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

things I thought today

After a very long day yesterday spent bedside with my grandfather at the hospital, I decided I needed some quiet time in the sun with God and a good book. So here's what I noticed while getting my vitamin D on.

  • My dogs are incredibly lazy. When they aren't being teased by the bore bees, they spend their time sprawled out like salamanders soaking in the rays of the sun.
  • Everything is so incredibly green right now. Our grass has already been mowed for the first time this year. Even the branches that are still bare are sprawling their limbs skyward with tiny little buds lifting their heads and smiling at the sun.
  • My flowers are shooting up. It seems that the trees and myself aren't the only ones enjoying the sunshine.
  • We never really had a true winter. Plenty of rain and dreary skies, but all of the parts of winter that are enjoyable seem to have gotten lost this year. No big snow, which means I never made snow angels and came in to drink hot chocolate or whisky. ; )
  • My grandfather told me about a week ago to enjoy everything as it is happening. To take it in. Find pleasure even in the things that are painful. Reflecting on those words, I tried to find pleasure in yesterdays events. I went over and over it in my mind. At last it came to me and I smiled. Though somewhat sedated, my grandfather raised his head. His eyes were weary and strained. Ever the strong man, he lifted his arm and reached out to me. When I took his hand he just smiled. He smiled that knowing smile of his and laid his head back down to rest. There is also something very comforting in the fact that he is ready to go. He doesn't feel like there is anything he didn't get to do...and that is incredibly uplifting. Even if I am not ready to let go of him.
  • After thinking about him and finding that positivity, I began to see so many wonderful things. The birds are back. They are flying and singing, chirping and gathering supplies for new nests. I must remember to get seed. We have beautiful cardinals and blue jays that enjoy our feeders each year.
  • The squirrels are chattering away and chasing each other from limb to limb. I suppose it is time to put corn cobs out for them as well.  
  • I am looking forward to planting new flowers outside. That always makes me feel good.
  • I'm incredibly lucky to have the friend and partner that I have. Mark was so instrumental yesterday in helping me keep my shit together...most of the time. He went to the store today and got supplies for buffalo shrimp, hooters style because I mentioned yesterday that it sounded good. He is always doing little things...and when you add them up, gosh...I can't think of anyone more kind and knowing of what it takes to be me. (And love me anyway.)
  • God is so Good. Even when there seems to be so much pain in the world, he puts someone in your path (or a couple of someones) who knows exactly what you need to hear, and how you need to hear it. I'm so grateful to HIM for THEM.
Thanks God for a beautiful day, and for opening my eyes to see it around me.

Friday, March 9, 2012

Swiffer Out

I must admit, after the February Photo-a-day, my blog is a bit dusty. Sorry, folks! I started a new job and this girl has been falling into bed every night around 10:30! The new job is going well. I'm back at another tanning salon, and I really like it. Generally people who want to get tan are super nice and in happy moods, and that jives well with me! I'm also sporting a nice golden glow and that does wonders for the psyche.

In other news, I went back to the doctor last week to talk more in depth about getting preggers. I cannot even begin to tell you what a joy it was to have Mark in the room during the visit. Along with the nurse, the doctor and a trainee. There we all were. Mark and the doctor just chatting away while he was doing the exam. The nurse talking to the trainee about making the patient feel comfortable during an exam. Me lying there with my legs spread wide for everyone to see...wishing a great hole would open in the earth and I could fall into it...for like, forever. OMG.

And really, I can't NOT publish this. It's too funny looking back to not want to remember. (Though I'm still not sure I will ever want to remember this, but still.)

My grandfather has taken a turn. He's not well. Please send some prayers up for him.

OK. That's all for today.

Happy Friday!
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