I haven't said anything, because I haven't really been able to figure out what to say. or even if I should be saying it here. but I can't seem to slap on a pretty smile and show you vacation photos or painted nails with this weighing on me. it just doesn't seem right.
this past saturday, my grandfather passed away.
my Papa was my last living grandparent, and we were blessed to have nearly a hundred years with him. and they were good years. the ones I remember were full of gardening, cutting the grass together with a push mower, working on puzzles, playing card games, and watching hockey and baseball and golf. he would always pull on our toes to wake us up when we were kids, and made this noise that kindof sounded like a duck. when he wrote a book, he secretly typed up all his pages on his typewriter and mailed them to a cousin to be computerized and then emailed back to him to send to the publisher. the tomatoes he grew were the best I've ever tasted. he spent his life spreading God's word. even retirement couldn't stop him from preaching... he started services and a bible study in his retirement home for those who couldn't make it to church anymore. he always wore cardigans had coffee after dinner. he loved my Nana, his sweetie, so much. and he loved to tell stories. he told us about life on a farm in Canada before electricity, walking my uncle in a stroller around Tiger stadium, and of a hockey team being stranded by a snowstorm and sleeping on pews in his church on Christmas Eve [I might be remembering that one wrong though.]
I'm sad I can't be there with my family to celebrate his life. it's certainly not easy to be far away at a time like this. in fact, it's really really hard. but I was lucky to have so many good years with Papa, and I know the time I spent with him in those years is no less meaningful because I am not there now.
this picture is almost 5 years old. but it's the most recent one I have of just us two. or at least on my computer here, I think. I remember when we took it. he wanted to hold my hands and so even though it looks a little awkward like I might be elbowing him in the head, I promise it's just he loved me and wanted to hold my hand. and I loved him and so I did.