After adding my cousin as a friend on facebook, I found this picture of my grandparents in her pictures... Ashley I'm sorry if you are reading this.. I totally stole this from you!!
This picture brings me to tears when I see it! To some it's two old people kissing- to us, it's the example of love and patients that will forever be ingranted in our minds and hearts. It's about a man who taught all of us about unconditional love and a good time.
When I was an infant my biological grandpa passed away. I had maw-maw all to myself... it was amazing!! We would go and play and do all sorts of fun things... yes, I still remember! When I was 4 1/2 I was told that she was getting married. I remember being super confused and not really understanding what was going on. I knew that I needed to be excited because all of my older cousins were as well as all of the adults.
Let me back up and say that whenever maw-maw would come over, it meant that we were going to go have fun and I would spend the night with her.
After their wedding (p.s., it was amazing... power wheels and swiming at the reception!!), I remember looking up at her as she was saying good bye to my mom and I didn't understand why I wasn't going. I'm going to confess here that I did not like whoever this Charlie guy was(poppy) at this point!!
Time went along and thinks got a lot better, even though they lived to Atlanta, we saw them all the time. He had lots of toys and tricks and chocolate was always in arms lenth! It was amazing! He taught emily and I how to shave (our face!!), how to do magic tricks and he would even juggle for us! It didn't take long for us to let him move in as a grandpa.
I remember after I moved away after high school and was thinking about all of the times that we would hang out and how good he was to me and my cousin, the example that he set for us though his actions, and I realized that he was more than just "Charlie". I called him up and told all of this and let him know that his new name was now "Poppy." I liked it. It was good for him.
So last year we got the devestating news that he had luekemia. He fought the good fight and was discharged with a clean bill of health and most of his hair! We were stoked. We all just prayed so hard and could not believe at the age of 87 that he had done this.
Then at the end of last summer we found out that it was back. It was back and they couldn't fix it. Maw-Maw was in denial and thought it was just a slump that he was in. We all knew better. We rallied around him. The night that he took his last breath was a night that I will never forget.
For the questions of "is there life after death", "do we really have a soul", "do we have soul mates"... the answer to all of these is YES!
The last few days that we had with Poppy were hard, they were hard on Maw Maw and on Henry. Henry was amazing, he stepped up and really took the lead. Poppy's family from Atlanta came and visited him during the last few days. He was in and out of it and would moan when we was out of it. Maw Maw would come in and talk to him and he would stop immediately. He knew what was happening and he wanted her to be by his side.
The night that he passed Maw Maw went in there and laid next to him and she talked to him for about 45 minutes. She told him how much she loved him and how he had made her life so complete and happy. She told him that it was okay to leave her but she would see him soon.
Emily and my aunt Linda were in the room when he took his last breath. Emily said that immediately you could see that his soul was gone. His spirit, his presence was gone. There was something in Maw-Maw that died too... she will never be the same.
In the days to come, all I could think about was how much this man impacted our lives. How he changed almost 25 people, just in our immediate family! I started thinking about how he had influenced me and the choices that I had made. How protective he was of his family. How kind and generous he was. How he was so compassionate and patient. How he was with my mom, and how jelous I was that I was not. That he finally got to bow at the feet of Jesus and sing with the angels. How he treated my grandma would forever be in my mind.
So while this picture may seem so silly from a mac computer and two old people who don't even know what a mac is- to me they are our worlds. They have poured into us, taught us about life and manners, and that love does wait, to follow your dreams, to have a man that loves you so much that he will be there forever!
Poppy, I love you and can't wait to see you!