Because of some sad family news, I only have a short post today, but I will hopefully have a much longer post up on Wednesday. If you have visited my site before, you’ll notice that it got a makeover. This past weekend, Grayson from Debt Roundup helped me make the switch to a self-hosted website! I was terrified about the switch, because my tech skills are pretty lacking, but I am really excited about the opportunities I now have for customization. I will have so much more flexibility with tools and plugins, and I won’t be limited by WordPress anymore. I am diving head first into this new stage of blogging. It definitely helps that I know that I can always email Grayson if I run into trouble.
Life really likes to whip you around like you’re on a roller coaster. Just as I was getting excited about making the switch to self-hosting and some other amazing opportunities headed my way, I found out that my dad’s dad was in the hospital, severely ill. Over the course of a few weeks, his condition deteriorated and he was transferred into hospice care with failing kidneys. My dad was able to make it up to the Buffalo area where my grandparents live to say goodbye on my Grandfather’s last day, but he died this past Friday morning.
I don’t know much about the man that raised my dad, but I know that my dad is the most amazing man on the planet, so he must have done a few things right. My grandfather was never famous, rich, or successful by society’s standards, but he lived a long life and left a huge family behind. He worked hard to provide for his wife and eight kids to the best of his ability. He taught my dad carpentry, masonry, and craftsman skills, the level of which just don’t exist anymore. He passed on a gift to my dad, whose gifts will be passed down to my kids. I know that whenever I did venture north to visit family, he always seemed genuinely happy to see me.
The wake is today, and the funeral is tomorrow. It takes 10 hours to get there from where I live, and there is no way that I can make it there with two young kids and two dogs to be with my dad as he mourns his dad’s passing. My heart is aching that I will never really get closure to say goodbye to the man that raised my dad into the amazing man that he is. Distance and circumstance were such that I never got to have a real relationship with my grandfather growing up. Even so, death has a funny way of creeping in and causing sorrow, even when you weren’t terribly close with the person. I appreciate the man that he was, the man that he raised, and the legacy that he left. I mourn him for my dad’s sake as well as my own. My heart is aching, not only for the loss of my grandfather, but also for my dad as he comes to terms with his dad’s passing.
A death in the family especially helps you to refocus your priorities. I want my biggest priorities in life to be a life well-lived and a family filled with love and laughter. Today, to honor my dad and my grandfather, I am spending a special family day together with my husband, who has a rare day off, and with our two kids to get out on a family hike. The best way to remember and honor the ones that you love is to keep on living a full and vibrant life. Your loved ones want you to make the most of every moment. I intend to do just that.