Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Is Everybody's Grandfather Like This?!

         This Antiqued Bronze Filigree Grandfather's Car Pocket/Locket Watch Necklace by DIYDIYSTORE caught my eye this morning when I was looking around Etsy for things having to do with grandfathers. It SO reminded me of my own grandfather....I called him 'granddaddy'.
     I've been thinking about my granddaddy a lot lately. I know why. It's because of my dad's being not at his best health-wise lately. I've been reminded, during conversations that me and dad have had the last few days, of how close him and granddaddy had gotten before he passed away recently.
       My granddaddy was 'something else'!! He was the good and the bad, all wrapped up in one. He was funny....SO funny! He was old-fashioned, set in his ways, opinionated,....and funny. Oh...did I already say he was FUNNY! LOL
     He was also an alcoholic for most of his life. That's what had strained him and my dad's relationship for so many years....Although, for me, being an unaware oblivious kid, his being an alcoholic was what made me first aware of how funny he was!...He drove my poor grandmother CRAZY!!
       She loved him Sooooo much!! I guess you'd have to love someone a whole lot to put up with the kind of shenanigans my granddaddy put her through!! He would insist that she cooked and served him all of his meals...on time! {And she would do it....when she felt like it!! LOL} He used to hide liquor bottles in every crevice, or corner of the house that he could find. PHEW! the arguing I heard as a kid over that!!! ^_^
    But the whole time she would be fussing and yelling, he would be winking at us and showing us some other place where he had another bottle hidden that she didn't know anything about yet! {I think I inherited my strength of character and my strong fussing skills from her!! LOL}
          My granddaddy knew what a mess he was. Many times, out of the ear-shot of my grandmother, he would praise her ability to put up with his nonsense. He loved her very much too, but being old-fashioned, and with some out-of-date notion that the man was suppose to be THE MAN, he very seldom told her. He told everybody else he would meet!....but he didn't verbalize it much to her...not that I was aware of anyway.
    I saw him with tears in his eyes on occasion, just watching her do things around the house. And I saw her...too many times to mention...putting him to bed, softly stroking his forehead and, in a low voice that he couldn't hear because he was asleep, fussing at him and asking him things like: "Why don't you stop acting a fool?!" "Don't you wanna do something with your life?!" "Don't you care about me at all?!"
     Then the next day they'd start the "dance" again! She would be tieing his tie, fixing him a plate of food, showing impatience over some thing or the other that he was doing, and fussing the whole time!!...And he would sit there making faces, cracking jokes in a low voice so she couldn't hear, and smiling at us. ^_^
     My grandmother, his second wife (his first wife, my dad's biological mother, died when he was 16 years old!), despite appearances, was a fiercely independent thinking woman, with a strong sense of who she was. He thought he was 'ruling the roost', so to speak. But she was the real backbone of their operation! She was so good at being herself, and letting him be himself. I could tell she was always trying to nudge him in the right direction. But I also could tell that she didn't blame herself for his short-comings.
      My dad inherited the best of both of them.
        In fact, many times he talks about how granddaddy married the same woman twice! He said his step-mother was almost the 'spitting image' of his biological mother. I didn't know that she wasn't, when I was little! She doted on him, and he loved her with every fiber of his being. It was great to be a witness to it!
     It's funny how life repeats itself too, because dad is not my biological father, but no one could be closer to me!...besides God and my husband I mean.
        I stroll along in my life every day...{not always looking like this! ^_^ But Oh how my granddaddy would have loved this photo with my hair like this! LOL}...but with the love of some flawed, but great men.
       My granddaddy, with his alcoholism, set a bad example for my dad....who eventually became an alcoholic too. My husband was an alcoholic too...Well, before he was my husband that is!
     My granddaddy quit drinking after my grandmother passed away. When he died he had been sober for more than 30 years...I think. I sure wish she could have seen him as I saw him in those years!....My dad quit drinking after a debilitating car accident that almost took his life. It actually did have him in a wheelchair for a while, with doctors saying he would never walk again...but he fooled them! :-)) He hasn't had anything alcoholic in his system for at least 35 years...or more! And my husband quit drinking before we were married, almost 29 years ago.
      Oh, what a pair we are! 
        We carry the heritage of people who may not have always been at their best, but even that taught us how to be the people we are now...My granddaddy started this for me...No, we didn't have the same genes running through our veins. But love doesn't stay within those lines anyway. My granddaddy loved me. I always knew that. I miss him.
     That's also why I treasure the moments of time with my dad now too. No matter what happens, there will be no words left unsaid, or regrets of what could have, or should have, been. I have my granddaddy to thank for that. He showed us the way.


Grandaddy, I never told you this-
but it`s  important to me now,
to let you know how you change my life
in ways you know not how.

Memories of my infancy
do not belong to me;
Though I smile when they come from you,
so clear and sarcastically.

I love you more than you`ll  ever know;
and it just dawned on me why:
Because you are the touchstone to my past,
and my future`s  alibi!

Everyone has their place in our lives;
and that "place" may change-due to view;
But, as I`m  sure right now, that the sun will rise-
no one will ever take the place of you!


  1. What a beautiful post today the tears are rolling down my cheeks written with such love in your heart. I could relate to a lot of what you have written. My husband was a recovering Alcoholic of 21 years when he met me he was 20 years older than me but the illess still affected him every day and he needed to go to AA meetings at least once a week to keep him self in a good place i used to go to a few meetings with him when he was bad to help me understand and enable me guide and help him. Sometimes making me very uncomfortable but when you love some one dearly you will do anything for them almost at the expense of your own personal well being. Sadly became very controlling and he said he needed to give me my life back its been 2 and half years since we separated now and it took my nearly 2 years to get over that. But life moves in wonderful ways and everything in life is done for a reason i believe and i learn't many life lessons ;-) Dee x

  2. delia, Thank you for sharing your story with me. I guess we all REALLY do have a story, don't we! And alcoholism is a story a lot of people try to keep under the rug, so to speak. As if alcoholics are not really people. Well, as you and I know....they are...They need lots of care, and need to learn to love themselves as much as the people around them do. A slow process sometimes!...It's a lesson even non-alcoholics should learn!! I didn't mean to make you cry though. Sorry. I just have been feeling the need to "say what I needed to say". I guess I should arrange another "Say what you need to say" day! :-) In the meantime...life goes on, doesn't it?! ^_^

  3. This is a very sweet post today Wug. I can tell you truly loved your granddaddy! Mine died back in the 60's while I was still young, but I remember them very well! They were special!
    I love your poem! You captured the feelings that I think all little girls have of their grandfathers.
    I see a special bond between my granddaughter and her bapa (my hubby)!! I hope it stays there forever!

  4. CinLynn, Thank you. Yes, I've been trying to do this post about my granddaddy for quite a while now. Something else always kept coming up. He held a special place for me, as all granddaddies should...just like you said. And how nice it must be to see your husband as a grandfather now!! :-) Oh! The future is going to be nice, huh?! ^_^

  5. What a lovely post about your Granddaddy. I am so glad that you got to know him as well as you did. I didn't get to meet all of my grandparents. Most of them had passed away before I was born. I'd like to think that I would have had some special memories like yours had I gotten to know them. Even though I only knew my Grandpop (Dad's Dad) I have heard some lovely stories about all of my grandparents. They're something I'll hold on to and share with my boys.

  6. Jo-anne, Thank you for such a nice comment. I'm sorry that you didn't get to meet all of your grandparents. Truth is, I didn't either. This was my dad's dad. But I never got to meet my biological father's father. Since his death I've found out some wonderful information about him and his parents though. There's a story there too. Maybe one day I'll tell that one...It's wonderful to hear the family stories though. And to get to know them in another way besides your personal relationship with them. YAY for grands!! :-]


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