So many claimed him as their dad, grandpa, Pastor, mentor and friend but I was privileged to call him Papa.
October 3, 2014 We headed to the grave and so many memories flooded my mind.
First, the day he entered the throne of God. A year ago on 10-3-13
was a day I will never forget. At 3:46, I woke to a text saying, "Daddy is with Jesus." All I could respond is, "No." It just didn't seem right to have him gone so soon. The Dr. had given him at least 6 weeks more to live and it was just around a week or so and he was gone into the Lord's presence. I, honestly was planning and preparing for another Thanksgiving maybe even another Christmas with Papa, but it ended way to fast for me. It was so so surreal.
We don't all get to say goodbye to the ones we love. Some of our cherished family and friends are taken to heaven before we are ready. Some are gone through tragedy, some victims of violence, and others just slip into eternity without us knowing. It's really quite hard to express the pain of the grieving process when you hadn't had time to say goodbye. Gramps death came upon me as a complete surprise. All I know is that, I never got to say good bye.
One year later, my kiddos and I headed to the graveside; it's still surreal. There in a peaceful place, set between an American flag and water fountains, the headstone rests. Another memory, I remembered how my little guy wanted to help burry my gramps the day of his graveside. He was 4 at the time and brought his little shovel with him. We allowed him to throw some dirt into the grave and then more and more of the great grandkids used his shovel to follow suit. To him it was important to help; it seemed to help him in the grieving process. Today, my little ones still tell him that they love him, and I still mourn.
More memories. "Papa Chuck", how fitting. So he was to so many. Many people called him Daddy Chuck, or Pastor Chuck, but we called him Papa. It's funny how many people when they talk to me about him call him my "dad" or when referring to grandma they say your "mom". I think it's sweet. I don't see the need to correct them. Those two were definitely protectors of my soul for sure. I spent my early years with Papa and Grammies. We would vacation together, travel, and simply stay the weekend at their house for many years. Even in my adult years I got the chance to move back in with them. I loved hearing them sing to each other in the kitchen. Watch gramps prepare grammy her coffee and granola for the morning. Enjoy precious times and fellowship around the kitchen together. It was fun to come home from work and see the delicious supper gramps had prepared: salad, always a protein, and a yellow or green vegetable. Saturdays were omelets with cheese, avocado, and salsa. Talk about mornings to remember. We girls got pampered.
A Special Memory. I remember being nervous to cook in their kitchen because it was always immaculate. Gramps could have cooked a storm and after dinner, it looked like a staged kitchen for a model home afterwards. Although nervous, I found a recipe that said, "Chucks favorite Cake". I couldn't resist. I had to make it. So I set out to find the ingredients and I went to town. Having no idea what this creation would be like I followed the recipe to the tee or tea or T (however, I could use a cup of tea right now). Anyway, sure enough as it set baking in the oven, in came gramps and grams. I was caught; the kitchen was as dirty as well as dirty as it could get with me being new to all of this. I thought oh no, what do I do now. Gramps looked at the remains of the ingredient I had used and said, "Nessa, your making my favorite." I smiled. "Yes, Papa, I am." He grinned, "wee". (That was his way he expressed great joy) He then jumped in the kitchen and helped me by showing me how to cool it properly. Then we enjoyed it all together. I finished cleaning up with my heart was so full of joy; I made my gramps cake and he loved it.
Papa you are missed.
I am so thankful that God has still allowed my grammy to be close. Just sitting with her is pure delight. We continue to go and see grandma at every chance we can. We laugh, we pray, she still counsels me on being a mother. She loves seeing her great grand babies and family and always asks us to come back soon. My vivacious kiddos love to see Grammy to. It's funny how she still has that protective motherly instinct even as a great grammy, and always warns the kiddos of the pending dangers to their bouncy behavior. LOL. We love her so much.
The legacy that lives within my grandparents, lives in me and I pray that I can pass that down to my family and to their family and on and on.
We miss Papa dearly. I can honestly say, this last year has been the hardest year of my life without him here. God keeps reminding me though that He (Jesus) is here. He is ever present and will always be with us, guiding and guarding till the day we see Him face to face. 2 Corinthians 5:1 For we know that if our earthly house of this tabernacle were dissolved, we have a building of God, a house not made with hands, eternal in the heavens."