Monday, July 9, 2012

RIP Grandpa

8/24/1923 - 7/4/2012
This is a post I haven't been looking forward to writing. One that I had hoped and prayed wouldn't come as soon as it did. Some openly talk about familial life and death on blogs throughout the heartache, yet I've never gone through something like this while being a part of the blog community. 

When I posted that I was going to MIA, I read comments from you all hoping that I was doing something fun. I was not. Early Wednesday morning (yes, July 4th), my Grandpa passed away. He was a huge part of my life, so I took the rest of the week off to be with family and help with whatever needed to be done.

I have to admit that I wrote the hardest piece of writing that I've had to write in my life so far: his eulogy. Instead of talking about him, I just thought I'd share it here.


The brown shag carpeting made the perfect blanket for the four of us to lie on our stomachs while sitting far too close to the TV.  It was Sunday afternoon at Grandpa’s house, where our dads, aunts, and uncle would spend time in the kitchen with Grandpa talking about grown up stuff, like sports, and we would spend hours watching Nickelodeon.  Every Sunday, without fail, Grandpa would make what we now call buttery rigatoni: pasta with not one, but two sticks of melted butter. He also made a separate bowl of rigatoni with meat sauce, because we each preferred something different.  It wasn’t until after we ate our pasta that we’d be allowed a helping, or two, from Grandpa’s stash of fruit roll ups or fruit by the foots; sweet treats that were always stocked in the house because he remembered our favorites.

That was something we could always count on, Grandpa remembering what each of us liked, specifically when it came to candy, cookies, or anything in between. We know that our sweet teeth came from him. 

It’s hard to easily capture a man we looked up to who was just 88 years young, but based on the many photos that decorated his refrigerator and walls family was his number one priority. 

A man of few words, but a big heart, his patience was unfailing with his grandchildren, and he never yelled as we desperately tried to pet the stray cats that only came into the house for him. We will always remember how quietly he spoke on the phone, his clever sense of humor, the money sorters, mechanical pencils, animal figurines, and overflowing bags of goodies that we received at every family event.  We’ll always remember seeing him in the audience and stands at sports games, dance recitals, or cheerleading competitions.  We’ll always remember his love of Dean Martin and listening to “That’s Amore.” We’ll especially remember how fondly he spoke of Grandma Lily, his unfailing devotion to his family, and his reliability.

Yet there’s one moment that stands out in my mind. It was the second to last time I saw him, just the two of us, sitting by the window in the hospital. We talked about tomato plants that are now growing in the garden, about cooking, specifically Italian food, and about family. We laughed and chatted, something I’ll always treasure, but it was something that he said that will be forever imprinted in my mind.

“I’m proud of my family,” he said while staring out the window. “You know, some have made mistakes, but I’m really proud of this family.” Not one to make a strong statement like that, I knew that it came straight from the heart.

Grandpa, you will be missed, but we’ll do our best to continue to make you proud.


I apologize for my absence from this social media and blog world, yet I needed alone time. It took days for me to even make phone calls to tell my friends because I just didn't want it to be real. But after the funeral, it felt real. So I slept for hours, drank some sangria, and cried...a lot. 

I go back to work today, and I crave the normalcy, yet after loss, I know that it takes a long time for everything to really be normal. 

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36 comments:

Hilliary@Brunch and Cupcakes said...

So sorry to hear of your loss! You and your family are in my thoughts! Let me know if you need anything! Take care girl!

PrettyPhysicist said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. It is never easy to lose a grandparent. We spent last week in Florida with Ken's grandmother - who is not doing well either, and it was heartbreaking.

Natalie said...

He sounds like a wonderful man...I'm so glad you had such a great man in your life. I'm sorry to hear about your loss...you will be in my thoughts and prayers.

Katie {Miss Dixie} said...

So sorry for the loss of your sweet Grandpa. He sounds like a phenomenal man. You will be in my thoughts and prayers!

Elizabeth said...

So sorry to hear about the loss of your Grandpa. Sending lots of hugs your way!

Janna Renee said...

I haven't lost a close family member in quite some time, so I can only imagine how this affected you...You wrote this beautifully, and I know that your Grandpa is looking down and happy to have you remember him like this. You are an amazing girl, and I'm sure you made him proud <3

Meg {henninglove} said...

ahh Amanda I'm sorry to hear about your grandpa. I'm sending prayers and love your way. What a great grandfather you were blessed with, thank you for sharing with all of us about him, sounds like a wonderful man

Amy Powell said...

oh honey, that's a beautiful eulogy. so touching & I think it would do him proud!

so sorry for your loss. best wishes during this tough time!

Leigh said...

So sorry for your loss Amanda. Sending you a big hug!

Mademoiselle Michael said...

Got chills reading it. Very, very well written, though I'm sorry it had to be. :'(

Ashlee said...

Sorry for your loss Amanda, thinking about you and your family.

What a sweet eulogy you wrote, I'm glad you took time away from social media to be with your family. Good luck back at work.

Lisa said...

Oh I'm so sorry for your loss. Thinking of you and your family, who were blessed to have him in your life.

Christy said...

I'm so sorry for your loss Amanda. Sending thoughts and prayers your way.

Neely said...

So very sorry for your loss friend!

Brooke Houston said...

:( I'm so sorry that you had to go through that this past week. I just lost both of my grandpas this year. It's such a horrible thing to go through, especially when you're so close to each other. My heart goes out to you.

Whitney @ Everything Happens For a Reason said...

I'm so sorry girl :(

Krista said...

Oh sweet Amanda, I'm so sorry for your loss! I can feel how much he meant to you. I will pray for you and your family, that time and each other's love will help to heal the hurt a bit. Please know that I am thinking of you and wishing you much love and hugs!

Val said...

So sorry to hear about the loss of your grandpa.

Molly Jac said...

Never ever apologize for taking time out for yourself and family girl. Family is 100 million times more important than blogging :) However Im so deeply sorry girl. Losing someone you are close to is the worst thing in the entire world. It's never easy and it's just something that down right sucks ass. If you need anything just holler at me! I know sometimes just a laugh will do the trick. Keep your head up! Xoxoxo

poptartyogini said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Jessica @ Lovely Little Things said...

Oh, Amanda...I can't even imagine the hurt that you are feeling right now. I am truly sorry for your loss and you can count on me praying for you & your family.

Your Grandpa sounds like he was a wonderful, one of a kind man. May he rest in peace.

If there is anything that you need, let me know!
xoxo

Jessica @ Lovely Little Things said...

Oh, Amanda...I can't even imagine the hurt that you are feeling right now. I am truly sorry for your loss and you can count on me praying for you & your family.

Your Grandpa sounds like he was a wonderful, one of a kind man. May he rest in peace.

If there is anything that you need, let me know!
xoxo

Erin said...

Thinking of you Amanda :(

Kat said...

I am so sorry to hear this Amanda! :(

Heather said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your loss Amanda. You and your family are in my thoughts & prayers!

Elle Sees said...

as you recall, i lost my beloved great-granny this year, so i know how you feel. take a break and know you're loved

Kathy Schneider said...

*hugs* I never said on my blog, but part of the reason my break from blogging was as long as it was was because my grandmother died a month ago. I know what you're going through and I'm so sorry.

Jax said...

I am so, so sorry for you loss. Rest in peace and prayers to your family xo

sherri lynn said...

I'm so sorry for you and your family's loss Amanda! What a beautiful tribute you wrote - thank you for being willing to share that with us! I hope that you are able to have some normalcy but also allowing yourself time to grieve and heal as needed. hugs!!

Adam said...

Sorry for the loss of your grandfather, may he rest in peace.

J and A said...

I'm so sorry. He sounds amazing. Big hugs.

Jenny said...

Sorry for your loss, Amanda. He sounds like such an amazing grandpa! Take care.

Mikelle Jade {The Honeypie Archives} said...

this is a really sweet post. I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my grandpa almost ten years ago, and there really isn't a day that goes by I don't think of him! Hold on to all the good memories, and yes continue to make him PROUD! best wishes to you and your family during this time :)

Carrie {Living It Up in U.P.} said...

I'm so sorry for the loss of your grandpa Amanda. Grandparents are such special people. He sounds like he was an amazing grandpa. ((Hugs))

Tesha Vann said...

So sorry for your loss Amanda! He sounded like one in a million

Miss Chelsea said...

aw hugs =( so sorry girl. Thinkin of you