When Your Grandpa Dies

A couple of weeks ago, two friends in my Country Roads family that I care a lot about, lost their grandpa’s. They both passed away days within each other. I don’t care how old you are, there is something really tough about losing a grandparent. I was nine years old when my grandpa died. My grandpa and my grandma had gone back to their home state of Missouri to visit relatives. At nine years old, you are able to understand that you won’t see your grandparent anymore, but I’m not sure you grasp the whole concept of “death”. My grandma died when I was 21 years old. And I remember that heartbreak still. I refused to go to her funeral, and instead had driven down to the beach to spend the day grieving in my own way. Below is a picture of me, my grandpa, and my sister Teri. The smiles tell our story!

A couple of Saturdays ago, Brad who works at the store, got a phone call at work that his grandpa had died. He came up to me with tears in his eyes, saying he hated to do this but he needed to leave because his grandpa had died. Brad is huge, being about 6ft 5in, but is like a big teddy bear. It broke my heart to see the pain in his eyes. I remember when my own kids had lost their grandparents (my mom & dad) within months of each other. I sometimes think losing a grandparent, no matter how old you are, is the toughest. There is this special bond between kids and their grandparents.

A couple days later after Brad’s grandpa died, I got an e-mail from Stacey, who is a friend and dealer at the store. Her grandpa had died too. As I read the e-mail I thought about how much Stacey had done for her grandpa in the past few years as his health began to fail him. It reminded me of my own parents and knowing what you go through when bodies and minds starting failing with those you love. There are no words to describe it. Its a day at a time, hoping for the best when there isn't much left to hope for.

Brad told me that he was really going to really miss his grandpa on Labor Day. They always went hunting together on that week-end, every year. Stacey told me about her grandpa, he was a fireman in Santa Ana for 30 years! You always remember the special things your grandparents did for you as you grew up. When I was a kid, I use to spend the night at my grandma’s a lot. Every morning she would always make me oatmeal and chocolate milk for breakfast and I got to sit in front of the tv as I ate it! There is just something really special about our grandparents. Maybe its the unconditional love they give us and just the "time" they always make for us. If you are still lucky enough to have your grandparents around, make some time for time them. After all, their grandchildren mean the world to them! I now know this very well since I'm lucky enough now to experience that love with my own little Riley!

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