It's been a year since my grandfather passed away. Honestly, the day snuck up on me. But there it was. June 18. I sat here at my desk where I usually sit and more or less said, "Hmm. We're still here a year later after all."
I'm not sure what I thought would happen in this last year. I distinctly remember my thoughts after all the family went home following the memorial service. "How are we going to make it?" "This changes everyhing." And the most gut-wrenching one:
"What do we do now?"
I took over the books. My grandfather had slowly but surely been handing that over to me for some time well before his treatments started tiring him out. I'm not nearly as obsessive as he was but he wasn't nearly as accurate as I am. He preferred to play spider solitaire and mow on the tractor (a whole other blog that tractor stuff is). He'd read bills and decide they should be smaller and hand them to me and demand that I call the provider in question and lower our costs. Period. The most famous assisgnment was for me to call AT&T to get our cell phone bill lowered. And if I hit a brick wall there, I was instructed by one gnarly and seriously abused index finger, "Now you tell them we'll just up and move to Verizon. See what they say to all that!"
And immediately back to solitaire.
You could bring him an issue and 9 times out of 10 he'd think about it and dismiss it with an imperial wave as if to say, "That is of no consequence to me." Or a shrug. Like yoda only...well, actually the same size. At which point a switch flipped in my mind and I thought that if Mr. 32 Patent Geophysicist gave it the cold shoulder, then perhaps I could learn to take so many of these things, look at them, and shrug with equal levity.
And indeed, now I do.
"How much money is in the main account?" **shrug**
"I threw my red socks in with your white laundry." **imperial wave**
"Where's Squib?" **shrug with confused reminiscent look**
"Mom, Crackers the deer is in our house again." **imperial wave accompanied by pack of crackers**
I have even perfected my own methods of coping with the insanity here at Green Acres:
"Do you know where the map is for RFI-101?" [there are 100's of maps here, of course I know the location of each and every one--not] **blank stare**
The following is my favorite:
Someone: "Can you find me a thus-and-such online?"
Moi: "Yes." (I like to mimic Beanstalk when I do this. Then they know I'm screwing around.)
[long, blessed silence]
Someone: "Will you find me a thus-and-such online?" **shrug**
("Someone" (Buddy) is always asking me to find thus-and-suches. I just google like everyone else.)
"An animal has turned over the trash cans and made a mess everywhere out here." **blank stare**
And one to keep us all feeling young:
"I lost my underwear." (Squib says while standing there holding his underwear). **blank stare w/finger point**
I'm not making light of important things, just learning to laugh and putting things in perspective. What's funnier than your six-year-old standing there in flagrante delicto looking for the undies he's got in his own hand? Not much. And he laughed too. What's worse? Losing a map, pink laundry, or--say--cancer. You decide. Should I enable everyone by doing the things they don't think they can do (or maybe don't want to) or should I encourage them (admittedly in my own way...and let's face it, it ought to be fun) to learn to do it themselves. After all, it's just Google. Well, and the map thing, and the online banking thing. And don't go thinkin' they don't dish it right back out to me, either. If any of the natives say that it's lies...all the way down.
Figure out what's important...god and people. And get that straight so that they all know (it's best to tell them out loud). Then...
Do your best to laugh at the rest.
Who wants to arrive at the pearly gates in a pristine Cadillac when you could crash smack into them in your old Civic with no brakes left to speak of, radiator steaming, no AC, overheated, and chassis dragging the ground knowing you dragged every inch of fun out of that thing?
I'll be in the Honda