Thursday, July 13, 2017
My grandpa has seen better days. Today, he is an outpatient at the Riverton Hospital, getting a blood transfusion. The last two weeks he has been residing at the Legacy Village Rehabilitation Center because of a hospital stay, and a feeding tube (he never passes the swallow tests). The two weeks (or maybe just 10 days) before that, he was in the hospital. He had a bad infection, stemming from a UTI because of a catheter and had two heart attacks and got a pace maker.
The months prior to the last several weeks haven't been so great either.
But, there he is, plugging along, unwilling to give in or give up. He keeps fighting, to stay with us for another day.
I'm not the best grand-daughter - it's really hard for me to visit. It's hard for me to see people sick and weak - I want my memories of them to always be strong and healthy. Knowing that my grandpa isn't doing well is also hard because when he decides it's finally time to leave us (hopefully not too soon), then that's it for me in the grandparent department. I realize that I'm pretty lucky that at 39 years old, I've still got a grandparent alive to learn from and love. But, it's touchy for me none the less.
Since January, I've been writing my grandpa letters. I have written a letter every single week, not missing one. He is my pen pal, only, a pen pal that doesn't write back. It's a little one sided I suppose, but I sort of like it that way. I know he likes to read, and I it's a good way for me to talk to him, because I've struggled with that my whole life, too.
My grandpa is stoic. He is strong and brave. He is faithful and courageous. During my life, he has shared opinions, wisdom and stories of his life with me...mostly through my grandma but on a good day, he can tell some tales.
On Monday, we were driving home from swimming lessons and I had the following conversation with Quinn. It's a little morbid, but he's four and a half and like all almost 5 year olds, he only speaks the truth.
Q: Mom, is Great Grandpa at home or still in the place?
M: He is still in the place, but he is doing okay. Should we go and visit him?
Q: Yes, we should visit him.
M: Should we draw him some pictures to decorate his room at the place?
Q: Yes, I want to make him a card. How do you spell, "I'm glad you're not dead!"
(Elliott and Wyatt laughing hysterically)
M: Well, maybe we should say, "I'm glad you are still alive, instead?"
Q: No, mom. I'm glad he is not dead.
Well, Quinner. So am I.
So. Am. I.