Tuesday, 19 January 2016

Realizations with the passing of my grandfathers...

I've had to rewrite my 'year old in review'. This is because since I began writing this I have lost my last grandfather. I don't know who reads my work here, but I do know I want to share with you the importance of this man and by extension all three of my grandfathers to me.

When I was born I didn't have a father, but by the time I was adopted I had three grandfathers;

¤ My Grandpa Aaron; the gentlemen,
¤ My Grandpa Lionel; the intellectual, and
¤ My Grandpa Glass; the hero.

My grandfathers have always seemed so much larger than life, as though they were characters from some film iconic to our time on this planet.

Grandpa Aaron, a pharmacist, would pay for the medication out of pocket to help those that could not afford it; an illegal act that surely saved lives. Grandpa Lionel, a psychiatrist, spent a lifetime researching PTSD; even when it was not formally recognized. Grandpa Glass was a hero. And I mean in the classical sense. His military career led to the achievement of seven individual medals, including the French Legion Medal of Honour. Suffice to say the newborn that once had no male in his life would not grow up lacking those from which he draw inspiration.

But those men are gone now. And my life seems a little less complete. I have come to accept this as a permanent feeling as a result of losing those important to me. Death has always been hard for me to accept. I suspect it is supposed to be that way. Losing people of great importance to oneself was never meant to be easy. We are supposed to feel that. So when I that those men are gone I feel sad. I will always miss them. But it is in missing them that they can never truly be gone because I can never truly forget them. My Grandpa Aaron will always be the man that introduced me to baseball. My Grandpa Lionel the man who used to spend a good hour on the phone discussing politics. And my Grandpa Glass the man who had seen so much but never lost his sense of humour and was always able to make me laugh.

My world is a little less full with them gone.  And I find myself increasingly disappointed that my daughters will not have the same fond memories of them that I do. But as we turn to 2016 I cannot help but hope. I don't foresee a time when I won't miss these three men that shaped me, but I do know the inspiration they instilled allows me to be a better man and a better father. Rachel and Lily are their legacy and I would not have it any other way.

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