Matt's grandpa passed away in January. We had just spent several days with him in Iowa, when we traveled up North last month. We drove back up to his funeral on January 30th... Nine days after Larry Wiklund's funeral.
If you didn't know Matt's Grandpa Christy, I wish you did. I have a suspicion that he is a LOT like Matt will be in 40-some years, if that's Matt's lifespan. This is how I knew him, which I didn't know him as well as I wished:
- He would smile as I spoke and encourage me if he thought I was being hard on myself.
- He was one of our faith-supporters, and he faithfully went to church a few blocks from his house.
- He never interrupted.
- He worried about Grandma when he found out he was sick.
- He had a garden and nurtured MANY indoor plants. He got a kick out of his Christmas cactus that bloomed twice!
- I remember when we pulled out a bunch of old photos last March... a year ago now. He was so excited to talk about the different things that everyone was doing in those photos. Grandma and he both seemed to have a great time remembering together with Matt's mom, Char. I was so glad to be there, observing. Not many people have moments like I had watching them. I feel lucky.
- He'd give plants away to Matt and me, and he'd give us thorough care instructions.
- He worked for many years in a grocery store, and he also took care of others' crops.
- He told me he would really like to be my grandpa a couple years after Matt and I got married. No one had ever told me they wanted me to be a part of their family before... I felt very special, and I cried a couple minutes afterward. (Fortunately we were just pulling out of their driveway.)
- He really liked his bird (a love bird) named Peaches. He talked to her like she was his granddaughter. It was so cute... and she loved him too! She'd sit on his shoulder.
- He was stubborn. He would do exactly what he thought was right and stand up for it.
- He wasn't fancy, nor did he try to be anything he wasn't. He claimed that he was a simple kind of man, and I really liked that about him. I wish more people would be as brilliant as him and shed away life's unnecessary complications.
- He had spent some time in the army... even in Germany, I think. He talked about several adventures while we were in the hospital visiting, one of them being how he met Grandma through letter correspondence! I think their love story should be turned into a movie! He talked about how proud he was to tell everyone he had a girl waiting for him back home. That makes me smile. He served as a cook, and Matt said he could crack more than 5 eggs at once! I think he told me Grandpa would do all the egg-cracking for meals up until a few years ago. :)
- Grandpa liked a good conversation. He liked to sit and talk, but sometimes he'd just listen. And he seemed to like it.
- Grandpa and Grandma came to visit us in Longview with Dan and Char (Matt's parents). We did several different things, but I remember Grandpa getting excited about the boat trip on Caddo Lake. He thought that was spectacular--- and it was! He reminded us afterward about what the guide had taught us about the birds and plants... it was neat.
- Matt said that he used to always eat Grandma's oatmeal cookies for breakfast!
Of course no matter where I stop in talking about Grandpa Christy, I won't be done. There are always more things to say. I think what I've put may have given the right impression of who he is... maybe.
I just wanted to mention him. We've been going through a lot in the past two months, and it's all hard to process if we don't take a step back and look at it all... here's just a glimpse, I guess! :)