Wednesday, June 21, 2006


I just heard that the strongest and best man I have ever known is not doing well. My aunt called to let me know that they are going to put my paternal grandfather in a nursing home.He recently had a ninety percent blockage of his carotid artery cleared, and I was told that he was acting more like himself than he had in a few years. The family moved he and my grandmother up from Florida, because they really couldn't take care of themselves any longer. I had gotten used to the idea that Grandpa "was back". It was welcome news. For the last four years, it seemed like he had just given up. I remember how angry he was when his father did the same thing in the years before his death. I felt much the same way. Dad's death last year also hit him hard. I don't think there is an appropriate word for the impact. "Grief" is laughingly inadequate. Today, I was told that since the move back to Michigan, he has been vacilating between hysterical and morose. He has been telling people that he wants to die, that the family has been beating him, etc. I have no doubt that he will walk with the Lord, perhaps soon, and I'm am grateful for that, but I will miss him just the same, especially since my Dad can't be for my boys what he was for me.

This morning, I saw something on my drive to work that would set my other grandfather spinning in his grave. Grandpa Ray was a WWII vet. He fought in the Pacific. He had friends at Bataan. He professed to be a Christian, but he NEVER forgave the Japanese. On my drive in to work this morning, I came upon a Toyota Prius with an American flag sticker on one side of the hatch, and a blue star banner sticker on the other side. I could almost hear his voice in my head, and it was far less than charitable.