Losing a grandparent is one of the toughest situations life can throw at you. The universe can be cruel and have no remorse, and it always seems to kick you down when you're about to get on your feet again.
For my family, the past few years have not been kind to us. Within 3 years my family (including extended family) has lost 5 members. 3 of those were my uncle, my grandma, and my grandpa. Losing my uncle was by far the most shocking thing I have ever encountered, but losing my grandparents was harder.
My grandparents have not been in the best health for the past few years and quite honestly, I'm surprised they both pushed so long. My grandparents were the kind of people to have life knock them down but then kick life right back in the ass and show life who's boss. They both constantly got sick, got better, got sick again, got better again, got sick again, and got better again for a couple years.
A few years ago, my grandma literally almost died in the hospital 3 times. Yes, 3 times. Her blood pressure was so low that even the doctors said they were surprised and that she should really be dead. But she pushed through and she lived for another 3 years after. In that aspect, we were blessed. But in that time, she and my grandpa had lost a son. I lost an uncle. And my aunts, uncle, and my dad lost a brother. But it brought us all together and it taught us to live in the moment and appreciate life's little gifts.
I won't lie, when I got the news that my grandpa had passed, I was sad, and I cried a little, but it didn't really feel like I lost anyone in my life. 5 months later, when I got the news that my grandpa had passed, that hit me a little harder. At his funeral, it all hit me at once like a wave. My uncle, my grandma, and my grandpa...all gone...within 2.5 years.
It was then that I realized what a huge loss this was from my life. My grandparents were 2 of the most supportive people I've had in life. They were always so proud of me, even for the little things. They thought it was absolutely PHENOMENAL that I did something as simple as CHOOSE to grad school after I complete my undergrad. I'll never forget my grandma giving me $5 for every A I got in school or my grandpa gifting me the most random things he found around the house.
My grandparents LOVED their grandchildren...always praising them for the littlest things, talking to us about their past, our future, what we're up to, movies they like, etc. They would always ask about us when we weren't around.
I still can't comprehend everything my family has gone through the past few years, but I do hope that we're done suffering for a while. I like to say everything happens for a reason, but I can't even begin to think of a reason my family went through all this.
Let this be a lesson to those of you who still have grandparents. Cherish them as much as you can. Spend as much time with them as you can. Take them places. Give them little gifts. Make them something. Make sure they know how much they're appreciated. They won't be here forever. Love them with all your heart, because one day they'll be gone and all you'll have is memories. Make them good ones.