When I was little, my grandfather suffered a couple of heart attacks. I have a memory (whether accurate or not) that he had one at the gas station. He had bypass surgery when I was in high school. His ticker is now 93 years old, and it's gotten weary.
Add the death of his wife of almost 76 years, and I'd like to think that his heart has lost its reason to beat. That in more ways than one, it's broken.
Theirs wasn't an easy life, and it was unlike anything you or I could imagine. A life of need and hard effort, where emotion and feelings were dealt with at the end of the day if you had any left over energy. I love yous were few and far between making the ones uttered beyond precious.
My grandfather had always been such a hard man, one of few words or expressions, one of no luxury or excess. To see the edges of his soul crumble to his feet and soften like well worn leather has been surprising. To see the man who never sat still be confined to a wheel chair has been disenchanting. To see him join my grandmother in heaven will be a relief.
My grandfather had a spell last week that the doctors believed to be a mini-stroke. After another episode Monday night, they were able to determine that he's having mild heart attacks. His body is tired and failing, and it probably won't be much longer before we're breaking out the funeral attire again.
I beg anyone reading these words to whisper a prayer for my granddaddy. A tough man he was, hard working and strong, not easily contained or controlled. And now he lies in wait. Confused and basically alone, just waiting on his body to quit the fight.
Say a prayer for all of those in this same predicament. I used to think that you lived and got old and just passed away. What I have learned over the past few years is that passing away has become, in our modern society of medical advances and prescriptions, a slow process of helplessness. And my heart hurts for the many who are dealing with this process in their lives right now. It's not easy for any involved from the dying to the spectators.
Just whisper a prayer...