Grandpa & Sammy

Happy Birthday

Today would have been his 73rd birthday.

It’s been almost six months but I still miss him every day. And there are days like today where the thoughts are overwhelming and no matter how much I try to push them back, they’re staring me in the face and punching me in the gut, reminding me of the last time I saw him and how much he loved our family and how I could sit on the phone with him for hour long conversations and how he loved my dog.

I forget how much it hurts because most days I don’t think about it.

Isn’t that how we get through this? You grieve and you’re sad but you take a deep breath and move on, because you have to, to stay strong, to stay living, to not become someone that person would be disappointed in, someone who doesn’t know how to go on living their lives to the fullest just because others are gone from this world.

Distance helps. It easier to not think about someone not being there when you don’t see them on a daily basis. But sometimes this makes me grieve more for those in my family, especially my Grandmother, who did and who are now missing a daily part of their life.

But we’re all reminded of him in our ways. We see pictures, we think of conversations, we hear a song or drink a drink or visit a place and think, “Oh man, Grandpa would have loved this so much!”

Especially today, his birthday.

There were no reminders from phone because I deleted them the day I deleted him from my contacts. Not because I wanted to forget but because it was too painful to see that reminder.

I never needed it though.

His birthday was always sandwiched in what I called the “November birthdays” which basically consisted of my sister on the 18th, my cousin on the 20th, my uncle on the 21st and my grandpa on the 22nd (all on the same side – my uncle being grandpa’s son, my cousin being my uncle’s son his last grandchild and my sister being my grandpa’s third grandchild). (My mom’s is tomorrow, the 23rd, so yes, November birthdays are oddly fitting)

I always called. I always got a chance to have a conversation with him, a long one about random things in life and it was always such a joy to hear the life in his voice, to know he’s celebrating another year in this world.

There’s no phone call this year and that makes me sad. I know one of these days, it won’t be so sad and it will be a gentle reminder of the man I knew and loved. A reminder to take a moment and celebrate the fact that I was blessed to have him in my life.

It will always be his birthday.

And what I wouldn’t give for more birthdays.


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  • Reply Amanda November 27, 2011 at 12:48 am

    My grandpa died when I was in 11th grade (so about 17 years old) and I’m now 27. I have a picture of him holding a big fish above our bookshelf at home. Sometimes my husband catches me staring at the picture and says “you’re thinking about him, aren’t you?” and I am…. and I’m sad that my husband never got to meet him because he was the nicest, most down-to-earth kind hearted man, and they would have gotten along great. It’s sad to think of the would’ve, could’ve, should’ves… wouldn’t spent more time, should’ve called one last time… but I try to remember all the great stuff about him instead. Good luck 🙂

  • Reply Kristy December 5, 2011 at 12:47 am

    Thanks! I always try to remember the good times, the thirty wonderful years I had with him. This whole concept of a life without him was something I dreaded for so very long. But it does get better, you can move on. It’s just those fleeting thoughts that creep back in that can nag at your soul. Even crazy things about how he would’ve LOVED the new puppy we ended up adopting the same weekend he passed. But it does go on, life and everything else.

    Thanks for stopping by! 🙂

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