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.


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?