We were out eating dinner when my mom called…twice. Once on my phone, then once on my husband’s. She never does that, unless it’s important. Someone fell, from somewhere high, is all I can gather from my husband’s phone call with her. For the life of me, I couldn’t figure out who would fit this description as I quietly tried to decode their phone conversation. It was my grandfather. My grandfather who is completely healthy and happily pushing over 80! The guy who could probably still beat me in an arm wrestling contest! He had a fractured L1 and L2, broken/fractured pelvis, and 6 broken ribs. He would need surgery to fix the hip/pelvis and recovery would be many, many months.
Before you think this is your typical grandparent story, let me tell you why it’s not. It’s not, because he’s not. He’s not a typical grandfather. He is so much more. He has been a father figure to me for almost ten years. He was never asked to do this job, but he just jumped right in and filled that important gap that was suddenly missing in my life. There were moments when all I needed/wanted was a hug from my dad, and although he never knew it, my grandfather’s hugs brought me to tears but saved me from breaking down completely. They were always at just the right time, when I needed them the most.
My grandfather also fills another vital family role, even more important than the one in my life. He is a grandfather and great-grandfather to my son. Having lost both our dads, my son doesn’t have any living grandfathers. This is another role my grandfather has seamlessly filled, and thanks to him, my son isn’t missing out on those relationships. Since my husband travels more than most on business, my grandparents have been there for it all.
They’ve seen us through good and bad, through hard times and fun ones. They were there for me through my son’s 1st year of life, which I still feel was the hardest year of my life. They’ve helped me move houses when no one else could, and when the boxes were so overwhelming I wanted to take my two year old and run away just to avoid unpacking them all, they were there to help with it all. They were there through my surgery, my recovery, reminding me that I’ve got this. So, as you can see, my grandfather has so many unbelievably important roles and jobs in his life. Right now, however, his only job is to heal. To get stronger, each and every day. His physical therapy is his job. Until he turns around months from now and realizes he’s succeeded at that job and can return back to those other vital roles he fills.
I’m here now to tell you that you’ve got this. The hardest part is over, but the journey is still a long one. But you’ve got this! You are strong, and you are loved so fiercely! The road ahead won’t be easy, but we have so much faith in you because it was you who showed us that faith to begin with. We love you and are continuously praying for you!