Thursday, July 7, 2011

Grandpa Jordan

I mentioned at the end of my last post that the Fourth of July weekend would be bittersweet.  This past weekend my husband and his family said their last goodbyes to the patriarch of the family, Grandpa Jordan.

Grandpa and Grandma on their wedding night

The Grandpa Jordan I knew was loving, kind, light-hearted, enjoyed life, had an electric smile, and had a major talent for bulls**t.  The pictures I saw of him showed an extremely handsome man with a charming smile, the great time he was having at the moment, and love for those around him.  At his memorial I heard stories of those he touched with a wise word, a kind note, or an instruction on how to make a double decker sandwich.  I listened to a grandson honor his Grandpa as only a fellow soldier could.  I weeped when my husband shared about his Grandpa and read letters from his siblings.  I laughed at the stories from friends who were treated to the Jordan finding out all of those years of Grandpa driving them to the airport were done without a drivers license.  Grandpa loved his wife, his children were his absolute joy, his grandsons were his heroes, and his granddaughters made his eyes sparkle.  Even for those of us who married into the family, he made us feel like we were one of his.

Grandpa with his boys last Thanksgiving

As a fallen comrade, the US Naval Honor Guard played taps and presented the flag to his wife at the memorial.  I am tearing up right now remembering that beautiful summer day overlooking the ocean listening to the trumpet play while the flag was being presented.  The sound of the trumpet made me cry uncontrollably because Grandpa Jordan was a true patriot of his country.  Having his memorial on the Fourth of July weekend was fitting and perfect, and for the rest of my days the Fourth of July will remind me of Grandpa Jordan and that he lived his life and loved people. 

Grandpa loved the ocean and loved to go for a cruise in his son-in-law's boat.  So, the family took one final boat ride in Grandpa Jordan's honor.  The day was amazing, warm and sunny.  A baby freckled gray whale swam around the boats as were were heading out...almost like it was saying goodbye to Grandpa.  A couple of miles out a pod of otters were floating on a kelp bed watching us motor through the waves like they were saying goodbye too.  It was such a special time for the family and the perfect way for all of us to be together and remember Grandpa. 

I would never classify a funeral as fun, but this was a fantastic celebration of Grandpa Jordan's life.  We celebrated because he is with God right now and we will see him again.

One thing I want to take away from this weekend is to show the ones I love how much they mean to me.  This is what Grandpa Jordan did his entire life.  He invested in other people's lives...whether his family or strangers.  This type of investment is different for everyone.  Some people write, some people show love physically, some people call on the phone, some people travel many miles just to sit and have a cup of coffee with another person, and some people give gifts and send notes.  I want everything I make, imperfections and all, to show those I love how much the recipient means to me.  This is hard for me.  I am not one to show what people mean to me...I am introverted, introspective, and I am not a hugger.  It will take a piece of me to send little letters to my grandparents, to call my family regularly, and to take the time to have a cup of coffee with my close friends.  Thank you Grandpa Jordan for teaching me about loving others and finding the most in a single moment.

I want to challenge you all as well.  Tell those around you how much they mean to you either in person, through written word, or by something you made for may be the one person they need to hear from that day.



Post a Comment

Essie Sews is a drama free, mean free, spam free zone. I reserve the right to remove any of said type of comments. I don't mind differing opinions, however when they cross over into mean, then I mind. Thanks for understanding!