My mind is full of thoughts. Right now I feel angry, sad, resolved, determined, thankful and broken hearted. My emotions change with each breath. I’ve always had a special bond with my grandfather. Maybe it’s a middle child thing. I can only remember being angry with him once. The other memories I have are all happy and cherished. I remember holding his hand at my nan’s funeral when I was 7 years old. I remember going to the bus station with him to pick up Ann from Manchester and seeing a page 3 girl in a newspaper for the first time. I remember helping grandad lay stepping stones in his garden made from concrete. Each has a different memory on them. Either a hand print or drawing. I remember the day he brought his “Kit” car home for the first time. It was a black Astra GTE with electronic dashboard. We used to go for rides in it and he would tell me to close my eyes as we approached a bridge, so we could fly over it. I remember my 18th birthday when he gave me nan’s musical powder box. I remember him holding each one of my three children for the first time. I remember him being so proud when he saw my BMW for the first time. “My grand-daughter owns a BMW” he said.
I’m downloading all my favourite memories so they take away the the horror story of watching the life slowly and painfully drain from my poor, brave grandad. My grandad who has been there for me all my life, didn’t even have the strength to suck water up from a straw today. My poor Grandad who has been to scared to eat because of the pain from the cancer tumour in his bowel, held my hand tightly as I left the hospice today, I just know he was saying goodbye.
Grandad has had a wonderful life. He has a large family who love him dearly. He will be missed. I will miss him terribly, but an animal wouldn’t be made to suffer they way my Grandad is right now.
For the last few weeks, Grandad has had to listen to me prattle on about meaningless rubbish, unable (or too polite) to tell me to shut up. He’s had endless tests, injections, medications… but now he is in a lovely room with a view of the garden in Florence Nightingale Hospice in Stoke Mandeville, being allowed to die with as much dignity as he can savour, thanks to the wonderful, caring nurses.
Death is so final. So unknown. So scary.
It makes me wonder what life is all about. “Are we human, or are we dancer?” Are we someone’s play thing? I can’t think about it right now. I have to think happy thoughts. Although Grandad will be leaving behind a wife, brother, daughter, sons and many grandchildren and great-grandchildren, he will be re-united after twenty-nine and a quarter years with my lovely Nanny Bean.
Love you to the moon and back Grandad George!