May 27, 2005

A visit

Last night, I came home from work early, loaded up the car with the kids, and went over to visit my 90+ year old grandfather who broke his hip recently, in two places, and was now in a rehab facility a couple of towns over from where we live. So, off we went.

My grandfather is someone I cherish, deeply. He has been the man I have always wanted to be -- strong; smart; polite; worthy of respect; religious in a quiet, sincere way; good humored; and full of love. He is our pater familias.

Now, he is diminished in body and in mind. He has lost weight, because he isn't really eating. While I was there, it was clear that the nurses were making him drink Ensure, a nutritional supplement. He asked me 4 or 5 times whether the kids had eaten dinner yet. Each time, of course, I answered the question as if it was the first time I had heard it.

I know that we are all supposed to get older and eventually die. But I'm not ready for him to go yet. I think that having the kids around cheered him up. The kids were adorable and very well behaved and the expression of astonished joy on the Boy Child's face when he figured out how to operate my grandfather's hospital bed seemed to make my grandfather radiate happiness himself. I hope he decides that he ought to be taking care of himself and eating now that he has seen his great grandchildren.

Posted by Random Penseur at May 27, 2005 11:19 AM

From what you divulge here on your blog, you are well on your way to emulating Grand Pop.

I hope he gets stronger real soon.

Posted by: Wicked H at May 27, 2005 07:57 PM

I hope so, too. It'd be great if he could finish with impressing and influencing yet another generation before he finally goes. Even it's just to let the boychild enjoy messin' around with his bed.

Posted by: Tuning Spork at May 27, 2005 11:08 PM

I agree with Wicked.

This post cuts terribly close to home, if you substitute my father for your grandfather. Dealing with my own hero's debilitated state has been a struggle of monumental proportions, the type I would usually turn to him for guidance on dealing with wisely. It's hard.

I feel for you.

Posted by: Jennifer at May 28, 2005 07:47 AM

Sending prayers his way R.P. What a wonderful person to have in your life. And what a wondeful example you are to your children on the real meaning of love. Not an emotion, but an action, a way of dealing with others, that shows the other person we respect and care for their being.

Posted by: Rachel Ann at May 28, 2005 02:10 PM

One of the worst moments for me, ever, was when I realized my Bubbie and I could no longer have the long conversations that we loved to have because of Alzheimer's. She'd tell me about the old days and I'd listen till my ears almost fell off.

I hope your grandfather gets better soon, RP. I really do.

Posted by: Howard at June 1, 2005 05:16 PM

this november .....i take nb to see my nana, she has alzheimers and isn't doing all that well...i hope so much she hangs in there.

this weekend at my brother's wedding - she saw pictures.
my sister said the best part was
all day long - every hour or so....she showed them to her again...and nana got to relive that moment of realizing she was a great grandma all over again.

yes....i think seeing your wonderful for all concerned.

Posted by: sn at June 2, 2005 07:07 AM
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