Friday, September 21, 2007

Paddy V Clarke

My grandfather died twelve minutes ago.

Peacefully, and two weeks after they thought he was a gonner.

My mum and dad were five minutes from seeing him. They were parking in the hospital carpark when the phone rang. They were going there to say goodbye and they just missed him.

And so the 'if onlys' start.

If only they'd had a shorter lunch. If only I hadn't monopolized the phone call with the news Summer Heights High now needs a disclaimer at the start. If only they'd left yesterday.

Right now I sit at home, alone bar my pets. Half of me wishes I was with them in Canberra, the other half is glad I don't have to see it.

And all of me is sad.


Jared "No Nickname" Hansen said...

Jeez, I'm sorry, man. I've never really had a grandfather die - my 'grandpa' died a few years back, but he was actually my step-grandfather. My grandmother's original husband died before I was born from radiation poisoning. And then they just adopted my dad, so then there's my real biological grandfather, a lonely Czech migrant who left the country in disgrace in the 50s, who I've never met, and in all likelihood is no longer with us.

I can only speak for myself, but when my adoptive-step-grandfather, the only grandfather that I'd known, died I didn't feel bad, because he lived a long, rewarding life, and had done good things with the time that he had. I hope the same can be said for your own.

Youth of Australia said...

My grandfather was 89. He'd near singlehandedly got his large family from Ireland to Australia, served in two world wars. He was a great grandfather when he died (I mean, he was great, but there were four generations if you know what I mean).

The last I saw him, was in a hospital bed, singing happily along with some Celtic tunes on the radio while he shamelessly flirted with the nurses looking after him.

So, in short, he went a way that I'd probably recommend.

The worst part is that it was minutes before my dad could say goodbye, or my mum could say goodbye.

That's the worst bit. They were so close. Another hour was all they needed.

So, it's my parents I'm more worried about.

Though I dare say my grandad would have enjoyed tomorrow's Doctor Who, and now he's unlikely to see it (do they get the ABC in the afterlife, or is it just direct-to-DVDs).

Anyway, thanks, Jared. I've got eight cats and two dogs trying to cheer me up, but that helped better.