Wednesday, May 18, 2011

epic monday

my goofy girl wanted to file grandpa's nails

I got to be a part of one of those once in a lifetime moments today...

Grandpa was admitted back into the hospital after a couple of falls which left him in a good bit of pain.  Added to the pain he already has from the cancer that is spreading inside him, it warranted a trip to the hospital.  This morning they decided he has to go into a nursing home later this week...

We hoped it wouldn't come to that, but after nearly 64 years of marriage his girl did everything she could.

Needless to say... it was a day of tears.  It's hard to express the feelings that took place today.  It was one of those days that is etched in my mind... forever.  I tried to recount these events to some friends I ran into and I got the half smile and nod... they didn't get it.  I wanted everyone to share in my pain and weird sort of joy for what I'm going to share with you next, but they didn't really seem to care.  My grandpa is old.  He has cancer.  He is dying, but he's MY GRANDPA.  It may be a familiar story, but I want him to matter more to my world.  At least for my sake.  How can we do this better?  I've been the same way to others' stories, but how can we do better?  How can we value life more?

We finally got a pic w/ grandma Shirley!
The foreshadowing of perfection came as MaryAlice burst through the doors and declared to the receptionists, "Good Afternoon. I'm going to see my Grandpa Howard!"  With equal enthusiasm she greeted grandpa with, "Hey Grandpa, how you doing?  You sick? You not feeling well?"
I love her!
She entertained us for about a half hour before Grandma came back from her trip to the mall and lunch with a family member.  She bought a brightly colored necklace, earrings, and a bracelet that "would match everything" this summer as she's out each day visiting grandpa in the home.  I had to add the last part because is was grandma doing her form of therapy and it was cute and sort of surreal to sit there and hear it as she nursed her breaking heart.

Before long MaryAlice was through with the visiting and thankfully my mom accompanied us so she shadowed the baby up and down the hallways visiting everyone on the hospice floor.

Then it happened...
Grandma and I helped Grandpa back into the bed after he, MaryAlice & I took a stroll down the hall.  He reached up and took Grandma's face in his hand and said, "I love you... with all my heart.  You're a wonderful woman."  I sat next to him on the bed and held his hand as he told me he loved me too.  He said he was so proud of me.  He went on for several minutes with us and then we spent some time praying together.  I sat and held his hand as he drifted in and out of sleep whispering his blessings on us in the process.  He sang a few lines from "Because He Lives" and drifted off...

It was a gift

1 comment:

  1. Such a sweet story. Wish I could meet your sweet little girl. When my grandma was in the hospital after a broken hip she just wanted to die, it was so stressful for her. My oldest two didn't really know what to do when we visited her. My youngest two just seemed to know that the best thing was to just love on her. Silas (4) would just hug and kiss her over and over. Claire sat on her lap, looked around as if to say, "so we hang out here now, grandma?" Kids seem to take the awkward out of moments and I wish I could be more like them at times.Prayers for your grandpa and your whole family.

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