Blogs are great. I can be completely anonymous, keep things bottled up and only share the tidbits that are juicy, scandalous or just plan cool. However readers would find themselves being completely deluded by a master storyteller. Well lucky for you I am not that great of a storyteller. I have a life and in that life really amazing things and really cruddy things happen and occasionally at the same same time. I know that I promised a post on the Catholic Liturgy but that got placed on the back burner for a little bit.
The name of this post really seems to put the day into perspective. Yesterday wasn’t good. At the same time I can’t say it was bad. I had many moments of great laughter and joy and more moments of profound humility and sorrow. All in all, I had a sad day.
Yesterday my world got considerably smaller. I lost a giant of a man who truly influenced my life in many many ways. On September 8, 2011, my grandfather passed away.
He is a great man with a heart of gold, stories for any occasion, and a love for the outdoors. He taught me how to play cribbage, golf and learn to enjoy the wisdom that anyone has to share. He is amazing and in a short post, I cannot share everything that my heart is processing. I am in full fledged grief and I am finding consolation that I can even say that.
While there is a lot I can share about my grandpa, as I am sitting here writing this, I can’t help but think of Mary presenting Jesus in the Temple and the prophet Simeon speaking to Mary.
and Simeon blessed them and said to Mary his mother, “Behold, this child is destined for the fall and rise of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be contradicted, and you yourself a sword shall pierce so that the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”
At this point Jesus was only 8 days old and being prepared for Circumcision. All the events and visits surrounding His birth were still fresh in Mary’s heart. Things that she would “treasure in her heart” forever. Events that during Jesus’s persecution, torture and death, although Mary too was suffering, she could hold onto as a tangible reminder of the happiness she had with her Son. It doesn’t mean that at those times when Mary’s heart was sore with the pain only a mother could feel. These memories gave her a gentle reminder that there was a reason for His suffering.
My heart also yesterday was crushed. After seeing someone I loved dearly crushed by dementia and other illnesses, he passed away. I suffer now but find that the memories of fishing, walking the road to the mine gate, sitting in the golf cart and listening to his wild stories while playing cards offer me a peace that couldn’t be from anywhere other than the heart of God. My grandpa wasn’t destined for the rise and fall of many but was destined to be my grandpa as I was to be his only grandchild.
While it’s true that I am hurt emotionally and I’m pausing occasionally as I scrounge for some kleenex, I have a restless joy and hope. I know that he is no longer suffering and that he has seen the face of God and borne witness to his life. I have faith that he is in Purgatory because his sins have been forgiven through Extreme Unction. There is nothing else I as a Catholic can do but pray for him and have masses offered for him in order to enter Heaven sooner. The ball is in my court and it is up to me and my family who are living to do the dirty work now.
I am sure that I will have more peace after the funeral, which will be sometime next week. I thank my family and friends for their support and prayers. Rest assured that you all have mine as well.
Requiem en Pacem Grandpa.