It’s been a year & a day since we lost my Gramp.
Last year, I wrote a blog post and I said, “I realize what a gift it is that my grandfather is still around and kicking (and sassy!) at 88. He is such a sweet man & if I was given the option to hang out with him or hang out with my girlfriends, you KNOW I’d pick him any day. A few of his favorite things include reading every book he can get his hands on (sound familiar?), eating chocolate ice cream, chocolate cake, or Oreos at any turn, & taking naps on the porch. He is hilarious & opinionated & he even has his own hashtag on Instagram (#grampftw). He tells me every time that I leave that he’s going to cry (stop it already, you’re breaking my heart). Gramp, I love you bunches & I know that Mom will tell you you’re online again & you’ll pretend to be over it but will secretly be thrilled.”
What a gift. He was, really, in all honesty, the biggest treasure of all. So when he started sliding downhill quickly last year, I started documenting it via my iPhone. I don’t want to remember him like this, but I’m so glad that I captured the last few months of his life. I will forever remember those last few weeks as the saddest & most humbling time in my life – sitting next to his hospital bed the last few days, just holding his hand and reading a book while listening to him breathe in and out. Occasionally I’d count them to distract myself & when he’d pause in between, my heart would stop. Most of the photos are far too personal for me to share, but the one below is my favorite.
It’s been a year & a day since he passed & I still find myself thinking, “Gramp would LOVE this,” any time I see something that reminds me of him, or anytime I heard a story on the radio. My cousin and I were shopping for Christmas presents this winter & we found an item that we tried to buy for him. It’s so hard & bittersweet to know that he’s gone, but I see him in everything that I do, & for that I am so thankful.
So today & everyday, Gramp, I raise a box of Oreos to you & say, I love you & I miss you.