My Pappy

1 11 2010

My grandpa passed away on October 14.  He and my grandma had traveled up to see my family in Canada, and were on their way back home to Kansas on September 29 when they got into a car accident in Nebraska.  They had some broken bones, and were put into a nursing home to recover for a few weeks.  We all thought they were recovering well, when they discovered that Pappy had internal bleeding, some of it being on his brain.  He was transferred to a larger hospital in Omaha, but for many reasons, he declined very quickly and, sadly, passed away.  We went out to Kansas for his funeral, which was on the 18th, and were so blessed by being able to spend time with my entire family, plus extended family.

I am so grateful for…well, several things.  First, that I had such an amazing grandpa!  He was one of those people that everyone loves, and I think every kid was drawn to him.  He spent a lot of time with his grandkids and I don’t think any of us had any doubt how much he loved us.  He was a pretty quiet guy, and he loved to read and garden and add his comments to conversations when he thought they were worth sharing.  I could go on and on about who he was and how important he was to me, but I think I won’t.  At least for now.  Oh yeah, the other things I am thankful for: I took Mayah and went out for Pappy and Granny’s 60th anniversary celebration in June, and I got to watch Mayah fall in love with my dear Pappy.  It was so fun to watch her interact with Pappy and Granny and get to know them.  Then, in July, we decided, sort of last minute, to go to my cousin Roxie’s wedding out in Kansas.  This time Kirk went along too, and we stayed with Pappy & Granny and got to spend some good time with them.  I am just so thankful that I got to be with them and got to watch Kirk and Mayah be with them and know and love them more.  So precious.  The hard part was that because of those trips, Mayah remembered Pappy and expected him to be with Granny when we saw her, and in his recliner at their house…it was sad.  And when his casket was being lowered into the ground, she surprised me a little (and made us all cry) by looking very concerned and saying “Where Pappy go?”

The last thing I was going to mention was that around lunchtime on Oct. 14, I was chatting with my dad about how Pappy was doing, when he typed something like, “We’re all here in the room, do you want to call?”  Meaning a video chat.  With my parents and my mom’s siblings and Granny…and Pappy (who was not responsive anymore).  I can’t explain the emotions that made me feel.  I actually started crying right away, just thinking about being in that room with them and seeing Pappy like he was.  I almost felt like I couldn’t do it, but then I decided that I couldn’t pass it up either.  I got to talk with Granny and see that she was doing okay, which was a huge relief.  I got to talk to my aunts and uncle and my parents, and then I got to see Pappy.  I cried a lot seeing him in the hospital bed, and really not looking like my Pappy very much.  And I told him I loved him and I was just going to leave it at that, but then I realized that this really was my last chance to talk to him.  So I asked my dad to take his laptop close to him and I asked my mom to give him a kiss for me, and then I told him what I thought of him.  I thanked him for being an incredible grandpa and for loving us.  I told him that I admire and love him so much and that we’re going to miss him a lot.  I cried like a baby.  I actually felt quite at peace after that.  A few hours later my mom called to tell me he had passed.  I have never been so thankful for a video chat.

Mostly I’ve been doing very well since he passed away, but every once in awhile I just feel this wave of sadness that he’s not around anymore.  It’s also hard knowing that my Granny doesn’t have her husband, who she obviously adored, around anymore after 60 years.  But she says not to worry about her and that she feels God’s grace.  Thanks for all your prayers for my family and for all your kind words during that whole time; we really appreciated it!

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3 responses

1 11 2010
rhondablogs

thanks so much for this…it makes me so sad that he’s gone, but so happy that we can write things like this honestly about what a great Pappy we had.

17 11 2010
rachel

What sweet pictures! Thanks for sharing this Karla. I’m glad you were able to talk to him. I remember him being just like you described – quiet, gentle, kind, a sweet, grandpa-type person!

20 11 2010
christina

oh Karla, I’m so sorry. this is a wonderfully raw portrayal of your feelings.

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