At the checkout line my favorite bagger, Joe, bagged my groceries. Joe is obviously really a Jose. And for whatever reason, I told him today that he makes me think of my grandpa. I never knew my grandpa, so the only way that he can possibly remind me of my grandpa is that they share a name and they were probably born within a few years of each other.
And mentioning that to him was all I needed to get to thinking about my grandpa. If he was alive today, it would be quite likely he'd be standing outside a commissary passing out little red flowers. He was a military man, after all. He fought for this country of ours for twenty some odd years of his life. In fact, in a way, he gave his life for it. The virus that killed him was one he had unknowingly picked up in Vietnam.
Driving home I may have felt him in the passenger seat. I say this because, I was thinking of how I didn't even get a chance to know him. And I'm pretty sure he would have loved me the way my dad loves our little fire-cracker-of-a-girl Brylie (my niece). And then as I was feeling these self-pity type of feelings, I felt peace and I do love you the way your dad loves that little redhead. And I haven't missed any part of your life. You'll meet me one day.
And then I was thinking of all the other daughters and sons and granddaughters and grandsons who never got the chance to know their fathers and grandfathers in this life. The sacrifice is heavy, there is no doubt, but this country, our freedoms -they are worth dying for. And I am thankful beyond thankful for the men and women who have made that sacrifice and who are/were willing to make that sacrifice.
I was a perfect, mascara-dripping mess when I got home with the groceries. When I came through the door, and Hubby asked me what was wrong, I could only smile and shake my head. I didn't think 'I'm crying because my grandpa died 33 years ago' would be something he'd quite get.