Today I bring you a guest post from my blogger friend EmmySuh, who will introduce herself (and how we “met”) in her guest post for today :) Emmy was so nice as to volunteer as well to help me keep this blog going while I am away and she’ll also share some memories from her granddads with us. Thanks so much, Emmy! It’s nice to see that others have good relationships and fond memories with their grandparents as well.
Little background – my name is Emily, sometimes known as Emmy, and I blog at https://emmysuh.rachieann.com
It’s a whirlwind of insanity and hyperbole and choreography and poems and ridiculous antics over there, feel free to come visit me.
Anyway, I offered to guest post for San – San and I met via a mutual blogger friends, and got to know each other more while I was in Germany last summer. (My heritage is German, and German was my minor at school.)
When I asked what I should blog about, San said maybe something about my grandparents, in honor of her grandfather.
Unfortunately, within the last two years, both of my own grandfathers died – my dad’s dad from complications of Alzheimer’s and Parkinson’s in May 2008, and my mom’s dad from colon cancer in February 2009.
It seems insane that my grandfather died right about this time last year. I still get caught with an ache in my chest every once in a while when I think about the hole in my world where he should be.
So, in honor of my grandfathers, and San’s recently deceased grandfather, and to all of ya’ll’s grandparents, living or dead, I’d like to repost what I wrote the week after my grandfather’s death in late February last year.
Hope you enjoy, and that it makes you think of a few precious memories of your own family, and cherish your time with them.
“First of all, I’d like to tell you just a little bit about my Grandpa (mom’s dad) who died this weekend.
The greatest thing about my Grandpa was his chuckle. A very jolly, solid sort of chuckle. I remember it well from my childhood, when I would be sitting on his lap whether we were overseeing the pastures on the tractor or on the porch swing or just on a bench in the gazebo. I’d say something cute and five-year-old-ish and his chuckle would reverberate through his chest, and in turn, make me giggle. It was always really comforting.
Grandpa was always a teacher. Sometimes this was annoying — when we just wanted to lay and bask in the sun poolside, he’d be coaxing us to learn how to do lifeguarding techniques, bringing out piles of his clothes for us to try on so we could attempt to tread water while weighed down. Sometimes, this was really sweet — from my childhood, I remember learning how to drive a tractor, ride a horse or swing a golf club.
He was always working, could never stand to sit still except after a long day of productivity. My mom’s half-brother said that even the last week before he went to the hospital, he was raking leaves at the ranch, although he was supposed to be resting. He really, really loved my mom and her siblings, and he really, really loved my sisters and me. Even when I would be annoyed about him asking what I was going to do with a Creative Writing degree in a skeptical tone, I still knew that he really, really loved me.
At first, when we heard the news, I was mainly sad for my mom. When I came home from Alvin Ailey [dance company performance I went to the night he died], she was sitting in the dark living room, by a picture of him and a lit candle. She kept saying things like, “I just don’t want to look away from this picture, he looks like he could step out and start talking to you.” or “He would hate being an invalid, that just wasn’t him.” or “He loved you girls so much. I remember how you all would run to greet him when he got home from work, and he just loved that.”
So I was so sad for my mom, because we very rarely see her like this. But today, for some inexplicable reason, I’ve just felt a darkness over my soul, and I couldn’t figure out why. I wanted to update the blog about my grandpa, and as I started writing, I started tearing up. (Sidebar: I’m at work. I had to duck into the copy room and dab my eyes. My chin keeps quivering. It’s awesome.)
It’s not that I didn’t think I did miss my grandfather, I just didn’t realize how much I would. Because he lived (ooo just had to change ”lives” to “lived” WEIRD) in Florida, because we live in Kentucky, because we’re not always super stable financially, because I’m a full-time student…we haven’t been able to connect/visit much over the past few years. I regret so much that I didn’t have a chance to see him one more time before he died — it’s been a couple years, at least. But he was a hugely important part of my life when I was younger, and once I started thinking about memories of him, I found several fond ones.
He was a good man, a loving father and grandfather, and he will be missed.