Thursday, August 3, 2017
One week ago today, my Gramps passed away.
I spent my days convincing myself that he was invincible. Now he's gone. It was foolish, believing that he was untouchable. But my world needed him, needed to believe that he would always be there. When he got sick, I told myself that he would live longer than anyone ever had in his condition. I was wrong. He was gone in the blink of an eye.
I'm not good at emotions. I don't want to be viewed as weak. I rarely cry in front of people...but goodbyes get me. I've said too many goodbyes for too many years. They crush me.
I want so badly to just give up on the world. To cling to despair. I don't want to be happy again. I want to hate everyone. I want to take my pain out on anything standing in my way. But I can't be that person.
Instead of misery, I choose to cling to this: in pain, there can be joy. Where there is heartbreak, there is opportunity. I can find comfort in the small moments of happiness sprinkled throughout each day. The sparkle in my nephew's startlingly bright eyes, the melody of my Gram's chuckle, the ocean of saliva in a dog's kiss.
That's not to say that we shouldn't mourn. The only way to heal is to face the pain head on. I'll admit, I haven't gone out of my way to be nice this last week. And honestly? That's ok. I'm slowly learning that it's not my responsibility to make everyone happy. And if someone can't get over my moments of weakness, then they weren't worth having in my life, anyway.
But I can choose to focus more on the good than on the bad. I can let myself laugh and smile. I don't have to live in anguish. My grandpa lived life to the fullest, he laughed daily, he enjoyed each step of his journey, he would want me to do the same.
I will miss his smile for the rest of my existence. The sun dimmed a little the day he passed, and nothing will ever be quite the same. But I can still live, laugh, and love. My grief doesn't need to define me. I want my joy to.
Someday, I want to bring as much light to someone's world as Gramps brought into the lives of so many people.