The girls have adjusted frighteningly well to the loss of the only grandfather they remember. My father passed away while the girls and I were at a playground on the afternoon of June 2nd. I called Mom at 3:00 while Charlotte batted a whiffle ball with a new friend and Maggie played on the swings, and my brother answered by saying he couldn't talk- Dad was gone and he needed to find the phone number to call to have his body removed from the house. He hoped to have the body out of the house (Dad died at home) before my sister and her kids arrived, and they had just left the airport in a rental car... ETA about an hour, maybe two since traffic was bad that day. My sister had come as soon as she could upon hearing that Dad was not going to last much longer, and she missed him by just a couple of hours.
It was a blur then, but I remember every detail of that afternoon now. Charlotte and Maggie seemed unaffected by the news, but kept giving me hugs and saying, "I'm so sorry that your Daddy died." We had visited the day before, and when it was time for us to leave, we each told my father that we loved him as he slept on a hospital bed in the living room. It seems surreal now. I feel kind of guilty for having children so late in life that my girls have only one surviving grandparent now.
It's a strange thing, standing at a funeral and being told what a saint someone was, of whom you have countless unsaintly memories. His public and private personas were polar opposites sometimes. He was a good man, but not without flaws. And it was enlightening to hear how some of my siblings felt about him (and about each other). I can't believe I hadn't known just how damaged some of my family's relationships are/were.
The girls are wonderful. Our mortgage has been modified to much more manageable terms. C still has not received a paycheck, but claims to be optimistic that regular income will commence within this month. I was promoted at my part-time retail gig, so now my measly income covers a little more than just groceries. We have much to be grateful for.
4 years ago