Journal Entry: Thu May 28, 2015, 11:20 AM
I've just received the news this morning that my grandpa has passed away.
I honestly can't say that I wasn't expecting this, after he just lost his wife of 54 years. We knew his days were numbered. Yet, I don't think I was emotionally prepared, after all. I can only express my regret at their lives, cut short after grandpa had finally used his VA loan to get them a house. Grandpa only got to enjoy the house for about one month before he was hospitalized and, more recently, put in a nursing home. One month he got to live in the only house he'd ever owned.
They had lived in trailers their whole lives. Grandpa was retired military, so he made some meager income, but grandma and grandpa never kept a lot of their money. They gave a lot of it away freely to one of their sons, who was a particular problem child. This same person who they gave most of their money to, never worrying about bettering their own lives, their own SON that they gave up so much for...never went to his MOTHER'S FUNERAL. He refused to go. He made up some excuse and pretended to get into a fight with one of my other uncles to get out of going.
Two of their children never left the nest. My Uncle Brian was diagnosed early in life with schizophreniform, and my Uncle Jeff spent most of his early life taking care of Uncle Brian, and most of his recent years taking care of grandma and grandpa. Uncle Chuck lived nearby, always close enough to ask for more money, but apparently not close enough to visit his dying father in the hospital or go to his mother's funeral. Aunt Marie lives nearly 2 hours away, and my cousin Lisa lives further than that, but my mom and I drove up there, and we all went together to grandma's funeral. Mom and Aunt Marie and Lisa all crying the whole time, and me. I'm not much good for emotions, but I am good for emotional support. I cried all my tears in my little room in California before I even flew in for the funeral, so my heart was left empty with room for their sorrows where mine couldn't fit anymore.
My grandma and grandpa didn't have any insurance policies, so we had to pay for grandma's burial out of pocket, and we'll have to sell one of grandpa's vehicles for his funeral. The house that they just bought was nowhere near paid off, so Uncle Brian will probably end up in a home, and Uncle Jeff will probably live with us until he can find a job and get off on his own. Though to imply those things will be possible, let alone easy, in the current economy would be nothing less than laughable.
My grandma and grandpa loved their children and their grandchildren more than anything else in life. But, I can't help feeling some regret that they left them nothing in death. If grandpa had had life insurance policies on himself and grandma, Uncle Brian and Jeff might have been able to afford to pay off their house, and would have at least been able to afford their funerals and to live comfortably for a few years. I also can't help but mourn the fact that they waited so long to move into a house. They waited so long that they didn't even time time to enjoy it themselves. I also feel deep regret that veterans who RETIRED from the military are no longer able to receive free burial rites under the Obama Administration. I regret that I no longer respect my Uncle Chuck, who I had convinced my mother to give just one last chance to, and who failed us. I regret most that I will no longer be able to give my grandma a bear hug and let her kiss my face a dozen times. I regret deeply that I will never see the pride in my grandfather's eyes again as he looks at me with a smile.
These things, and many more, do I express my sorrow for today.