Tasty Buttered Toast

Quips and Quandaries from a re-employed house husband

Archive for the tag “Gramps”


Don’t it make you smile?
Don’t it make you smile?

I didn’t post last week…

I know, big surprise right?  I had started the day wanting to… in fact, the night before I had a post in my head that I was looking forward to flushing it out through the course of the day.  But that didn’t happen.

When the sun don’t shine? (Shine at all)
Don’t it make you smile?

I regret not writing down my idea for my post last week because this week I got nothing.  I’m so emotional drained from the happenings of the week, and I guess the last 3 weeks… It all happened so fast, barely enough time to react or reflect. So my apologies if this comes off as a babble of nonsense… here goes.

It’s no secret that I come from a rather large family… in fact, my extended family on either side I have 50+ cousins if you count spouses.  So to say that my grandparents wanted to spread the family tree would be an understatement.

Don’t it make me smile?
When the sun don’t shine, it don’t shine at all
Don’t it make me smile?

Sunday morning I was informed that my Grandpa had passed away.  Tuesday was visitation, Wednesday was more visitation, the funeral, burial, and sometime to reflect.  During this reflection I was reminded that Ed is currently the only male great-grandchild… he is the only one that will carry on the Sluiter name.

Even now as I type that, it still floors me that given the fact that I have over 25 cousins (not all male), Ed is the only one that will carry on the Sluiter name to this point.  I have a couple cousins that could still get married and have kids.  I’m pretty sure my brother and his wife are looking to start a family at some point, so all hope is not lost.  But just the fact that without Ed and eventually Charlie the Sluiter name could potentially die out at the end of my generation.

I miss you already… I miss you always
I miss you already… I miss you all day
This is how I feel…

I’m 33 years old. I’ve lost a father; and now both grandfathers.  While he didn’t get to meet my father, it is my hope that even at 2 1/2, Ed will be able to retain some memories of the latter two great men.  I will tell him about who they were and what they meant to me and hopefully how they helped shape me into the man that I have become.

Whew!  Was that as wild a ride for you as it was for me?  Ok, maybe not wild, but an adventure to read… nah, probably more work than an adventure.  Thanks for struggling through, I know I’m glad I did.

I miss you already… I miss you always
Three crooked hearts and swirls all around… I miss you all day

– words from the Pearl Jam song Smile.


Parting Ways

Behind her eyes there’s curtains…
And they’ve been closed to hide the flames,… remains…

She knows… their future’s burning,
But she can smile just the same, same…

And though her mood is fine today
There’s a fear they’ll soon be parting ways

Christmas morning my Grams said goodbye to my Gramps as he succumbed to The Lord calling him home to heaven.  I cannot begin to express the strength or courage my Grams has shown through this whole ordeal for the last month or two.  The visits from the Hospice nurse giving her Gramps vitals and how well or poorly he happened to be doing since her last visit.  The pain on her face when he would “forget” to put on his required oxygen while going about his business around the house.

She even told me about how rather than being a real “bitch” and harping on him to keep his oxygen on, she would rather enjoy the remaining days she had with her best friend instead of spending them at odds with him and his hindered memory.  Through it all she remained by his side, from what I understand finding it difficult to get sleep for fear something may happen that would need her attention.

The relationship my Grams & Gramps had been the poster child for what a sucessful marriage and home life should be… they succesfully raised eight children of their own, along with countless foster children that came through the front door; always accepting them as part of the family and never turning someone away if they could help it.

Standing, like a statue
A chin of stone, a heart of clay, hey…

After the funeral, while everyone was sharing memories of Gramps and their experiences with him, Grams walked up to the mic with a message to everyone in attendance with a significant other.  She said that she really wished she could talk to Gramps about everyone showing their condolences, sharing memories, and celebrating his life.

But she couldn’t.

She reminded us that we need to cherish our time with our significant others… we need to not take that time for granted because someday that person won’t be there to talk to or to share a thought with.  Even in mourning, she wanted to pass along advice and remind us just how fragile life is.

And though he’s too big a man to say
There’s a fear they’ll soon be parting ways

Grams laid Gramps to rest December 29th with the whole family in attendance.  Many a tear was shed, and the void left by his passing won’t ever be filled.  What we do have is the memories of the good times and conversations past.

* Lyrics from the song “Parting Ways” by Pearl Jam

Post Navigation