This post was prompted by a discussion on a parenting discussion board, when somebody asked what is that we want for our kids. For me the answer was easy the doing not so much.
Just over a year ago our family lost an incredible person – Granda by name but so much more in reality. I’m the oldest grandchild – he was my best friend, my confidant, the person I asked for advice, the person I trusted unquestionably, the person I loved more than I express in words. In some ways I was incredibly lucky to have had him for 34 years, but on the flip side having had him so long meant the good bye was incredibly painful and a pain this still strikes me out of the blue on the bus to work, doing the shopping often when I least expect it. We had an unbreakable bond.
At 88 healthy years old, he knew his time was up and in his own words he was ready to go. He told me not to be sad that he was ready to go because he lived his life, he saw the world, he had a family who loved him, he was happy.
He used to brag about seeing every country in the world during his navy days, something many of us can only aspire to have done. He had many different jobs, he loved his family and everybody who knew him knew just how much. He loved life, he really did. I was sent a poem the evening he passed away entitled “Miss me but let me go”, the words were exactly what he would have said to me. I have a chain engraved with these words and his initials, it means the world to me.
From that day I have vowed for mine and my boys sake to live our lives. Sometimes that means just ignoring the pile of washing on the floor while I play with the boys, saying no to that work event, giving the kids the requested fish fingers and waffles rather than stressing about their greens. It means being present, ignoring my phone, the work emails, the calls when its our time in the evening after work. Its easy to get caught up in the cycle of work and bills etc. That’s always going to be there but its how I deal with it thats changed.
Its all about perspective and I can honestly say I have a lot more of that now. So in honour of a great man, what I really wish for my kids is that they too can say they lived their lives. Life is after all for living.