I knew something was wrong when the phone began to ring around 7am yesterday morning. When I saw my mother's number on my caller ID I knew deep inside that my fears were about to be realized. My incredible grandfather, who rebounded from the most hopeless of situations at Christmastime, had suddenly taken a turn for the worst on Friday.
He passed peacefully at home yesterday morning in his own bed with all three of his children snuggled up close loving on him.
Since his first fall back in November and the close call we had over the holidays, I felt more mentally prepared that the end was inevitable. In reality I have now discovered that we are never really ready to let go of someone who's love has been a driving force in our lives. Who's example helped mold who you have become. The emptiness that is left behind from the loss of a close loved one is too black and deep to be immediately consoled with decades worth of memories.
I am angry at myself for waiting until our upcoming vacation in August to see him again. I am heartbroken that the chance for one last hug or "I love you" is lost. I count the months between when I saw him last October and now and there are simply way too many of them.
My children have been so fortunate to have had a relationship with their great grandfather throughout most of their childhood and for that I am grateful. But the pain that death causes is something I cannot protect them from and late last night the sadness hit my little one like a ton of bricks. Her attempts to grasp the finality of it all had her so overcome with grief that we slept tightly wrapped in each other's arms for comfort.
I have been reminded that there are some very dark moments to this beautiful life we all get to live.
And that my broken heart isn't the only one requiring mending.
Yesterday, the world lost a man who walked through this life in honesty and honor. Always putting himself second to his family. He was truly one of kind and the most amazing man I have ever met.
Thank you Pops for 38 years of unconditional love. You are already sorely missed.