Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Whispers from Heaven

My grandfather was a wonderful guy.  All four of my grandparents are/were awesome, but today I'm thinking about Papa Jack.  Growing up, we lived far apart, so we only got to see our grandparents during the summer for a week or so.  I have wonderful memories of visiting Grandpa and Grandma in upstate New York.  Feeding the squirrels off the back porch.  Sitting on the front porch watching life go by.

After my grandmother passed away, Grandpa came to live with my parents.  (Thank you mom & dad, for making the sacrifices you did to make that work.  It was a blessing to him, and to me, and to the boys.  You guys rock!)  I am so thankful for this, because it gave me the chance to get to know him better.  To see him several times a week.  To include him in our family celebrations.  To see my boys get to know their great-grandpa.  (That's how he became Papa Jack instead of Grandpa...my oldest re-named him and it stuck.)

Grandpa was always a very quiet man.  Not much to say most of the time.  In fact, very little to say.  That's what got me to thinking about him today.  It must be where the quiet introverted streak in me came from.  The most I ever heard him talk was to my boys.  He would talk and laugh and play with them.  He could barely walk, and yet you'd find him down on the floor, 90 years old, playing with the boys.  Full of joy just watching them.

Today, it's been two years since Grandpa passed on and made his way up to heaven.  Late at night sometimes, my oldest still sighs and says, "I miss Papa Jack."  I do too.  I thought about him this morning.  He served in the Navy during WWII, on board a ship in the Atlantic.  He was there on D-Day.  At his service, there was a military honor guard.  The words "On behalf of the President, and a grateful nation..." still ring in my mind.  I have a whole bundle of stuff from his naval career that I plan to put together into a shadowbox and scrapbook to honor and remember him.   I need to start on that this summer.  I was mentioning that to a friend, without realizing that today was the exact two year anniversary of his passing.

This evening, cooking dinner, I thought about him again.  I was thinking about how he was so introverted and quiet like me.  And I thought, I should post about him.   Maybe on his birthday.  So, I went to look up his birthday, how old he would have been this year.  And I saw this...

John Howard Teetz
June 16, 1915 to April 13, 2008

Exactly two years ago, today.  Isn't that funny?  That I would think of him twice on this day, before realizing that today was the day?  It's happened to me before.  Something pops into my head a couple of times, enough for me to go look at something about it, and it's exactly the date the same date, but a year or two later.    It's like a nudge from above.  A whisper from heaven.  Who knows.  Maybe it was God giving Papa Jack the chance to whisper 'hello'.  Or maybe it was simply God reminding me of my blessings.

We miss you Papa Jack.  And we love you, for always.


Kiki said...

That's very sweet Michelle. Funny, as I'm reading, before getting to the end, I'm thinking "hmmm...Michelle mentioned him today, but never said anything about it being the anniversary of his death"...Now I understand. So funny how things like that happen.

Anonymous said...

Your Papa Jack sounds like he was a perfect man. Thank you for sharing him with us.