Monday, January 20, 2014

Love Is In The Air Blogfest and Grandparents!


It's a celebration of that little thing called love. Be it steamy or sweet, puppy, kitty, teen, aggravating, first kiss or final goodbye, let your scene tug at our heartstrings. Click HERE to find Mr. Linky and all of the other amazing participants!

I've been writing some love scenes that break my heart. You don't know how much I wish I could share them with you today, but it would be a huge spoiler for my Sendek Series. As in final book kind of spoiler, so you'll have to wait a few years to see it. But, I will tell you one of them makes me cry every time I try to write it. And no, no one is dying in that scene. *sigh* enough said.

So today, I'm going to share a real life love story that I'll always hold close to my heart. This is my Granny and Papa (pronounced paw-paw).

Growing up I spent a lot of time at their house. Then when my family moved to another state, they came to visit as often as they could. To say I loved them and being with them would be an understatement. I had multiple sets of grandparents (long story) but these were my favorite.

Granny always had something hidden for me in her house among the clutter of dressers, hutches and drawers. Most of the time she couldn't remember where she hid it and it became a treasure hunt. At night we would lay in bed and talk and talk.

Papa was more quiet. I don't know if I ever really knew him, but he would sit in one of those old wooden chairs with the straw seats in it by the bed and rub my back until I fell asleep. Papa was also 17 years older than Granny. And he fussed a lot. This would bother me sometimes because Granny had a heart of gold and would do anything for anyone. Then there came a day that I learned a valuable lesson about my Papa.

He had a stroke near the end of his life that took away movement and most of his mind. Sometimes he would know you and sometimes he wouldn't. And he swore like a sailor! He didn't do that before, but man! Anyway, Granny tried to take care of him at home, but it was just too much for her. He ended up in a nursing home when I was about 16. I hated to go there, but I'll never forget the last time I did.

Granny and I walked in the room and Papa started crying. I had never seen him look at her with such love and devotion. She bent down to kiss him and this is what he said.

"I didn't think you'd ever come back."
"Why not?"
"You're so young and beautiful that someone will snatch you up and you'll forget about me."
"I'm not going anywhere."
He cried some more while holding her hand tight before saying, "I don't know what I'd do without you."

I cried then, and I cry every time I remember that moment. It finally clicked. He really did love her. Always had. That real kind of love. The kind that lasts for 41 years.

So many times we expect love to look and feel like all the books, movies and songs that inundate our lives. But real love is often quiet and overlooked. Sometimes its messy and painful. No matter what it's always heart mending and heart breaking.

Why?

Because with each moment together you are more whole than you were alone, but you also know with each passing minute it could end. And you know you'll never be the same without it.


Here's to doing hard things together to strengthen relationships. This was our second half marathon where we crossed the line holding hands. It's one of my most treasured memories.

What or who do you think of when you think of true love?

31 comments:

  1. I probably would've cried as well. Some people just don't express affection outwardly.
    True love is my wife and best friend.

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    1. Very true! I think it's always sweet the way you talk about your wife. Good job on the hubby front!

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  2. Sweet and long-enduring love like this should always be shared. Such a wonderful story. Thanks for sharing it!

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    1. Thanks for stopping by! I figure if we share these moments we will remember that is what real love looks like.

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  3. I think that all of the romantic stuff you see in movies... well, in real life, all of that romantic stuff happens between two people and no witnesses. There technically aren't witnesses in the movie, either, so this kind of makes sense. There is the relationship you show to the world and the one you share just together. Those two scenes often look very different.

    I would have cried, too, in that situation. You were looking at love unvarnished.

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    1. I didn't think about it that way, but you are so right. Most of the time he was always fussing at her though. Perhaps the two things combined is what made this such a powerful memory for me. And yes, it was love in its purest form that day.

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  4. This is beautiful, genuine love. I love it-no pun intended.

    link: morgankatz505.blogspot.com

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  5. Thank you so much for sharing this, it's beautiful. You're right, love is hardly ever like what we read in books or see in movies.

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  6. I'm going to cry now. That's such a touching story about your grandfather. And I love how you and your husband held hands as you crossed the finish line.

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    1. Awe, me too! I love those feel good stories. I must say that for all the complaining I might to about my hubby (Maybe I'm more like my Papa than I'd like to admit!) he is my best friend and one true love. There are so many things in live I know I couldn't do without his support.

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  7. @Morgan, thank you!

    @Laura, why do we think we need that movie love when this is so much sweeter?

    @Huntress, :D Thanks!

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  8. I loved this! I'm on the verge of crying now. That moment was heartbreaking and beautiful.

    "But real love is often quiet and overlooked. Sometimes its messy and painful. No matter what it's always heart mending and heart breaking." This is so true and beautifully expressed. Thank you for sharing this!

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  9. So touching and beautifully written! You brought tears to my eyes with the story of your grandparents. That's what true love is, right? Loving each other in spite our quirks and idiosyncrasies. Thank you for sharing this wonderful love story!

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  10. Oh Charity, that was gorgeous! It's true that real love is often so quiet and easy to miss. I remember a friend telling me one of the most romantic things her husband had ever done for her was knit her a scarf. We chuckled, but to take up and entire hobby just to express his love, that's pretty amazing.

    Thanks for sharing this.

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  11. So touching. Love between grandparents and grandchild is unique. Sadly in my teens I lost three of my grandparents. Worst of all the first one was the only one I actually knew. My maternal grandmother. I love her so much.

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  12. @L.G., that is probably one of my best penned thoughts. Usually they don't come out so well, but I've been thinking about this one for a long time. Thanks!

    @Kristin, thank you too! When we find someone who can not only live with our quirks, but somehow likes them we have to hold on, right? Loved your story too.

    @Crystal, thank you! I love that he made a scarf for her. Investment of time is one of the things that show love in my mind. Every time!

    @Sheena-kay, Grandparents really do have a special relationship with their grandchildren. All the boundaries are different than between parent and child. It makes for something easy and unique.

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  13. What a wonderful story. Love is everything and yet it's so different for everybody. I don't want to wait years to read your story. I may volunteer myself to be one of your critique partners so I can get a sneak peak.

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  15. wow, that's so sweet - and true!

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  16. You describing yourself crying at writing that scene reminded me of the opening sequence to the movie "Romancing the Stone."

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    1. Great, now I feel like I need to watch this movie again. It's been years...maybe decades! LOL

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  17. Beautiful! And the pictures were fun to look at too!

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  18. I almost cried reading this. I like this story and what you said about real love not looking like what we see in movies and books and songs. Still, most days I wish it did.

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    1. :) I think we all wish it would look like those things, but in the end what we get is probably better in the long run.

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  19. That story is a sniffler...but it really does portray a love that seems to be missing among the younger generations (I am in my early fifites and people I know seem to divorce because this week's TV Guide does not match the sofa).

    The vows say "for better or worse," and no one warns you that there is a lot of "worse."

    My parents were together almost sixty years and they died last year eight months to the day apart. From watching them, the better made the worse worth it.

    Larry

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    1. I know! It's way too easy to just "move on" now days. One of my goals is to help my children (and the ones I work with at church) understand that everything worth having takes work. That's what makes it mean something. The hard times, the arguments and making up, those are the things that make all the beautiful moments beautiful in the first place.

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  20. How beautiful. There is some powerful force in love. =)

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  21. That is a beautiful memory to have of your grandparents.

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