My Grandad died. As such, I’ve been thinking about him a lot today.
I’m still trying to work out how there could possibly be a world without him in it and at the same time, Christmas seems so long ago.
Three months is nothing, except 90 days of my life going on and 90 days worth of stories, anecdotes and advice that I’m never going to get to share with him again. He would have wanted to know about the first I got on one of my summatives, but it was an essay deadline that was extended for me because of his funeral. He would have been proud of me raising so much money for charity while still not understanding why I had to give alcohol up to do it, although we may not have raised so much for Cancer Research had he not died just before the Dryathlon began. He would have asked after my housemates like he always did and I would have nattered to him about house nonsense, with him comparing details with adventures he had while doing his national service. He would have wanted to know all about my new housemates for next year and warned me not to let my landlord get away with not fixing our many breaks. He probably would have found me a newspaper cutting relevant to my backpacking plans in the summer. He would have introduced us to all his cousins at the family event on Saturday and we would have been able to see for ourselves how much he was loved rather than just having to hear it from the strangers we are related to but were only meeting for the first time.
Instead, I visit my Grandma, widowed after 59 years of marriage, every day that I’m home and sit there half expecting to see him come round the corner from the garage. I still don’t look in the room where he died. I let her talk to me of times gone by, trying not to flinch when she says “Oh, that’s something I would have asked Grandad.” At the same time, I relish my time with her and my parents because I know that they are also struggling. Their worlds have also irrevocably changed and no amount of age or wisdom makes that okay. Grandad had a fantastic, long life but we would all have given anything for it to have been longer.
I remember him making a hot air balloon from Blue Peter, and playing cafe with me complete with my very own shop sign, I remember going to Seattle and Guernsey, I remember the flower parade where he bought me a headband with my name on in glitter glue. I remember a tall, strong man and I am still not sure how he can now only be a memory.
This is day 90. I’m still not okay but life keeps on going. Writing down the things I would tell him makes it a bit easier but nothing makes it right. I will always miss him but for twenty years I was blessed and at least I have that to hold on to.