Grampa Don

February 8, 2010

Thank you, wordpress editing system.  “Grampa” is not a word.  Correctly spelled, apparently, it’s g-r-a-n-d-p-a.  Whatever.  I like grampa better.

Some of you may be well aware of my grampas and their recent health issues.   Well, Grampa Don has courageously battled stage 4 cancer over the past few months.  He was cancer-free for a while by great treatment, lots of prayer, and God’s grace.  I remember hearing that the doctors had said the cancer would eventually return, and when it did, it would be stronger and more aggressive.  I didn’t think it would come so soon.

Last Wednesday, we learned that it has returned in his lymph nodes and brain.  Treatment was offered to extend his life by 3-6 months, according to the doctors, but grampa has made his peace.  We’re looking at not a whole lot of time.

My grampa has the largest hands of anyone I know.  I don’t think he stands any taller than like 5’10,” and is moderately built, but his hands are enormous.

These hands have…

skillfully made cabinets

and furniture

even helped me make a guiro

probably spanked my dad, and his other 8 children out of love

planted huge gardens

pulled potatoes–i remember that

worked hard in tough, tough times

fixed cars, my own included

and everything else that broke

shoveled his driveway, the neighbors’ driveway, and for anyone else who needed it (same with mowing lawns)

dealt and lost and continues to deal and lose to my gramma at cards

These hands, palm up and open, also aided him in giving countless pieces of advice and love to his family.

These hands were open to everyone and anyone.

I will miss my grampa.  I will miss his hands.  I will miss his heart that guided these hands, extended these hands beyond himself and his own desires, to care for his family, his friends, his neighbors, his enemies, the loved of society, and the rejected of society.

Because of that, I will not be the only one missing him.