Over the weekend my grandpa passed away. He was the one who showed me that family is the greatest gift we have here on Earth. I’ve said before that children make everything better and there is no greater chicken soup for my soul than hearing my daughter laugh when all I can do is cry. She smiles with her whole face, like he would. I find myself telling Charlotte stories about her great grandpa. I told her how overjoyed he was to find out she was coming and that he got to hold her when she was only a day old in the hospital. He said having a girl as the oldest child was his experience and we shared that now. I told her that she got to celebrate his 90th birthday with him. She even looks like him. I think about what he would want for us as a family and it is just this; sharing in the joy of children, after all he had 7 of them!
My grandpa had 16 grandchildren and yet each one of us had a special relationship. I remember he was always on the floor with us; knee deep in toys and imagination. He loved to play the organ and chess with at least three of us snuggled up on his lap. If we weren’t there you could always find us in the pool. We'd hold onto his back and he’d swim for what felt like forever with us submerged, clinging onto him; bubbles shooting out of our grinning mouths. Grieving is like the wind, you can’t see it you can only experience it. It will come and go in waves and I’ll let it wash over me completely. Just when it feels like too much, I reach out for my daughter and she reaches back for me. It is in those moments that I no longer feel sadness just a deep sense of gratitude because I can feel him there, on the floor with us.