The most precious gift bestowed upon me by my grandfather was his time

My uncle’s request for speeches at my grandfather’s funeral was clear and concise: three minutes maximum.

This gentle request was made to ensure everyone who needed to share thoughts was included. Everyone understood that adhering to this timeframe was crucial as the limit exceeded eight. While I understood the reasoning behind the constraint, condensing my thoughts into three minutes seemed impossible. Yet, here I am, attempting to honor his wishes.

My grandfather passed away two days ago at the age of 87 and was known as Gramps, Stan the Man and Spaghetti Head. He was suffering from a lot at the end of his time, including heart attacks, strokes, Parkinson’s, and more, over many years. His body must be tired of balancing with them. I explained to my daughter. He felt tired even after carrying a toddler upstairs. So that must be fair.

The death of a person is not easy to understand. It creates confusion and ambiguity. I was there for the last 48 hours figuring out how to proceed.

When this kind of man leaves us unexpectedly, an incomprehensible void is left. I believe this may be an adaptation of mind for such a situation. Even though I tried to escape that feeling, it always returned the same feeling. But I remember his time and his genuine feelings for us, the gifts from him.

Spending time with my grandparents enriched my life as a single mother. Grandfather was never accused of representing all of my “father-daughter” occasions and some more ordinary daily activities.

I remember one incident: once, he was with me for a school function, and while I was getting the car, he was playing with my friends, just asking them to guess the first letter of his name, even giving some second hints.

Honestly, I don’t know why he was doing this, but every correct answer he gave delighted me immensely. He could remember everything that my elementary school friends had for me. Nonetheless, the underlying message resonated deeply: he deemed me significant enough to remember such details, which was priceless.

I can use a wide range of words to describe my grandpa. His office door was always open to anyone, and it was surprising to see how he managed every aspect of his life. He played golf, did charity work at church, hung out with friends, and invested.

Courtesy of Mandy Haury

Now, I have that confusion with my daughter in her playroom; it reminds me of how he had time for her, and it encourages me to pay attention to him and my daughter.

Grandpa had a cherished tradition of pulling each grandchild to him and conversing about life. I felt and cherished the moments because I couldn’t have answers to his questions. I didn’t have a clear vision of my career, where I wanted to be, and my path.

I ended those minutes in tears. But now I know the value of those questions because they helped us find ourselves. If I had tried to find answers for them earlier, my life would have changed.

We talked about how the world happens. These discussions assisted me in becoming aware of the world and improved my sight.

He had a clear vision of life. I am not sure whether he was doing this to help me in the future, but what I know is that he was always a normal human being.

Grief is uncomfortable and unavoidable. It needs to be addressed patiently. This made me bind us together with our family, yet also sets us apart, as each of us experiences it uniquely. Despite these differences, it draws us closer, even as we navigate its challenges individually.

This self-viewing helped me to find my direction. And the other thing is everybody needs to know the greatness of my grandfather. It will also encourage others to be such an impacting person for the needy.

Courtesy of Mandy Haury

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