Illegal Jesus


Posted in personal by indiegoddess on October 24, 2008

My mom misses her dad.

And so do I – miss my grandfather, that is. He would have been 92 just yesterday [since it’s now Friday way out here on the East Coast].

He was a Clinton supporter in the primary. Don’t tell him i told you, but he was in the hospital the day of the primaries and no one figured out how to get him his ballot, so he never got to vote. By just about then the nomination was sewn up for Obama, so it wouldn’t have made a difference. But I never got to talk to him much past my sending out that last card, letting him know who I’d be supporting in that same primary.

We didn’t get a chance to talk much about Obama. I didn’t get to get home often during this election cycle. I can’t remember how long it had been since I’d seen him when he died this spring. Too long. I hadn’t been privy to one of his lectures on Bush’s failings. Hadn’t heard him grumble his way through the newspaper. Hadn’t sat beside him at breakfast and asked him, to the chagrin of my grandmother and mom, what the president was doing to piss him off that morning.

We had a rocky relationship. Our family was closed-off, secretive, and a lot broken. He saw what he could see, and he protected my mother with a vengeance. That vengeance hurt me quite a bit, quite a few times. It’s not that I don’t understand it. He loved his wife. He loved his little girl. They were blessed to be on the receiving end of so much love, of such love. And the fact that they both know it is an amazing thing to witness.

Families can be so hard. Relationships can be such a struggle. Things are said that can’t be unsaid. Things are done that can’t be undone. But to witness that kind of quiet, stubborn, all-encompassing love, like the love my grandpa had (has) for my grandma – the love he had (has) for my mom, is a gift not many people get. Very few witness it. Even fewer receive it. When we do get a chance to witness it in our lives, or in the lives of the people we care about, we’d do well to take note. Sit down and process it. Figure it out – figure out how to love like that, by watching the example we may be lucky enough to have.

Love like that is never wasted. And even when it seems like it’s gone… love like that can never die. It’s impossible to kill. Separating my grandfather’s love from my grandmother, or from my mother, would take nothing short of the end of the world to achieve.

That grumpy, ornery, snarky, ice-cream eating, incessant chair-napping, retired military, politically-obsessed curmudgeon still has things to teach me. I’m not done learning yet, Pappap. I love you.

Happy Birthday. Yes, it’s a few hours late. I am sure you were anticipating my tardiness. It is *me* after all.

And I miss you, anyway.


Indie Goddess

P.S. Remember that time I won that argument with you in the kitchen?



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