Grandparent stories contest entry: @nineclaws

Grandparent stories contest entry: @nineclaws

OF SPIRIT

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When I saw the topic for this contest, my heart did a little drop. I never met my mother’s parents. They were both gone before I was born. My father’s parents are another story. I met my grandmother and saw her all of three times, briefly. The last time, I was around twelve. She has a tragic story, one I’ve only heard a few fragmented pieces of.



My grandfather was no father, let alone grandfather. He hated children. I was around him enough to know to keep my distance, at least several feet, well out of reach. Just in case. No sage advice from him, just my observations that told me how much of a problem alcohol could be and to be mindful of that for myself. I’ve always longed to have a grandparent, to have that kind of meaningful relationship. I’ve heard so many stories from friends. That’s my grandparent story. I’d rather skip it completely.



Instead, I’m going to talk about another older person who has been a major inspiration for my entire life, my father. I appreciate it that this is also an option for the contest, since grandparents have not been an experience I’ve really had. Thank you, @galenkp



BEE STILL

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He taught me not to go rushing about like a fool, smashing headlong into all kinds of difficulties that could be avoided. This reminds me of when he took me hunting for the first time and told me I sound like a moose crashing through the brush.


My father said, “Walk softly and choose where you step. Be aware of the conditions around you, they change.”



My father was a woodsman, hunter, trapper, and fisherman, among many other things. He was a multi-talented person and gifted with his hands when came to doing just about anything. If he didn’t know how to do something, he taught himself. I followed him around everywhere when I was growing up, watching everything he did, and asking endless questions. I wanted to try doing whatever he was working on. He almost always allowed me. I’d keep asking until he gave in, even when he didn’t want to, such as when I wanted to try out his welder when I was twenty-one. That one was especially hard for him.



CEDAR WEB DROPS

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It was magical to me, all the things he could make, create, and do. He never stopped. He’d pick up new interests and run with them all the time. I remember being shocked (should not have been) at one point when I visited, to find out he had taken up playing the violin. He was in his late sixties at the time. All this creative jazzyness and handiness I get directly from him.



He encouraged this. He even forgave me for making off with a few of his hand tools when I headed to university my first year. I remember coming home from break, only to have him ask me, “Where are my blue-handled pliers and the other two tools you took?” I thought he wouldn’t miss them. He had a garage, basement, and more full of all kinds of tools. I should have known better. My father missed almost nothing. The worst of that was, he’d know whatever it was. You’d think he hadn’t noticed/didn’t know, relax your guard, and then he’d pounce on you at the opportune moment.


Note made, pay attention, observe, say nothing, give nothing away, wait for the right moment, it always presents itself.



CROW EYE

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He wasn’t a patient person with people, but he had unbelievable patience with me. I see that when I look back. I’m naturally gifted at testing people’s patience. I also had his lack of patience. I noticed that when I was young. Even if I hadn’t, others were happy to remind me of that fact frequently.


Note made, grow some patience and make it a forest, don’t be like Dad.



LEAF POINT

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My father had this ability to be downright ridiculous. He was always playful with me like that while I was growing up and it would descend into absolute silliness. None of this ever ended. The jokes and games just changed as I aged. One of the last jokes he played that I fell for, was when he told both my mother and I that we weren’t allowed to pick rocks to take home. He said, “See that sign over there? It says you can’t pick the rocks here, you’ll be fined $250 for it.” He was pointing to a sign not far away, only slightly “readable”.



Both of us were getting worried. She’s starting to fuss about it (as she does). I happened to glance over at him and I see a slight little quirk at the edge of his mouth. He’s trying to keep from bursting out laughing. Busted. I called him on it. He wouldn’t back down right away. I thought, this is ridiculous, he’s got away with this sort of thing again, while he’s laughing at my mother and I. Without his influence, there’s no way I would have developed a crazy, wild, sense of humour that has no limits.



MAPLE FROST

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My father’s gone now. He had a minor medical issue combined with a lack of proper medical assessment prior to treatment. A few years go by. Late 2006, he becomes sick, four months of that, while doctors try to “figure it out”. During that, they pumped him full of so many intravenous drugs that he almost died in the process. Early 2007, they had it “figured out”. He had to have major surgery to repair something that should never have happened in the first place, if it weren’t for a series of medical errors. Three and half years later, I noticed he had some cognitive impairment. Eventually he was diagnosed with vascular dementia. It was downhill from there until he was gone in 2018.



My father taught me a multitude of things in many ways. Often he did so without speaking any words at all. We had another way of communicating. We were very close. We still are. He lives on in my heart and we will never be separated.


Death is change, not an end point.



TIDAL FLOW

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All photos taken by Nine with a Pentax digital 35mm camera.



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Thanks for your entry Nine, haven't read yet as I'm about to phone-interview for a role but I will.

Photos 👉💚

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My pleasure @galenkp! All the best for the phone-interview.

Photos 👉💚

Thank you!

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What a great post and tribute to your dad and the relationship you had with him...Also a nice little piece on who you are as you reveal many things here should a person choose to see.

I like how you've added in your notes to self to punctuate the lesson he taught you, or wisdom you gained. It's open and honest, self-honest, well presented and just feels so damned *nice.

I'm sorry your dad departed, mine has too as you know; it's the way of things though and his leaving creates a little room for you to be you, a reflection of him with a healthy smattering of you!

Thanks for writing it and I'm glad you took me up on my offer to write about someone else if the grandparent things wasn't a thing. Oh, just on that point...Yeah, lessons can also be learned, wisdom gained, from those whom we don't value or respect. Anyway, thank you.

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Thank you @galenkp, I'm really touched by what you've said.

Also a nice little piece on who you are as you reveal many things here should a person choose to see.

I sweating profusely knew you would see.

I'm sorry your dad departed, mine has too as you know; it's the way of things though

Thank you, I do. It is the natural order of life in this world, one that I accept.

Oh, just on that point...Yeah, lessons can also be learned, wisdom gained, from those whom we don't value or respect.

I couldn't agree more with yet another section you've more or less quoted from my code book. One of these times, we have to compare books. 😉😊

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My notebook is written in secret code. Well, not really, it's just that my writing is that bad it's illegible so...It'll need deciphering.

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I'm willing to bet that it's all committed to memory and you don't even need to decipher it for that reason.

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Mostly yes...But there's still pages to turn...That's part of the charm; one never know what may be on the next.

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Of course still pages to turn. I've never written mine down because it evolves and changes. It's a living thing.

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(Edited)

It's a living thing

Who sang that song? I'm driving so can't googleise it. Used to like that song. ELO?

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It gets easier. I'm a pro with death.

I thought a mother/son bond was untouchable, find a young dude who buried their mother at least, I know they'll agree but for the most part, mother/son bond is as strong as it gets. Pura buried her dad when she was 22. Getting to know her, I learned I knew nothing about father/daughter bonds.

It gets easier.

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I'm a pro with death.

What are your pro tips from your perspective? I'm always interested to learn.

Pura buried her dad when she was 22. Getting to know her, I learned I knew nothing about father/daughter bonds.

That's so young to have to let go. Mother/daughter bonds can be very strong also. It depends on those involved.

I don't think it gets easier. I'm saying this because I'm having my second go around with it at present. It's not easier, it's just different and I've learned skills from the first go around, which is making the second go around easier to manage, so in that way, easier, yes....on the merry-go-round.

Thank you @dandays, I know what you've said comes from your big golden heart, you softie.

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Just with the stuff you don't have to do on your own. Will and testament stuff, ceremonies, probates, cremations, transferring bodies across state lines—pro.

All. Of. Them. I wish I wasn't pro, it's just the way this one plays out.

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Oh, the lovely stuff you mean. None of that is fun but also good to have the knowledge and experience. That's something that you can give to others as well. I wish it hadn't been like that for you though.

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If it's inappropriate, forget I asked. How was the service, full house?

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It's impossible to forget anything where you're concerned 🤣
The service was definitely a full house. 😊

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Since you brought it up, how many signs you think exposing vulnerability requires?

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Hmmmm....I'd say it's situational and contextual. I'd need a specific situation to respond with a fuller answer, since I take each situation and person in the moment, deciding at that time.

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Sounds like our dads woulda gotten along swell. My father is 100% responsible for my twisted sense of humor… it certainly didn't come from my dear sweet mother :)

Mine passed a year before yours. Barely six months after they found the melanoma he was gone. Skin cancer is a bitch.

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Hahaha! So happy to hear that you have also acquired a twisted sense of humour from your father.

Mine passed a year before yours. Barely six months after they found the melanoma he was gone. Skin cancer is a bitch.

I'm really sorry to hear that. That's fast and I agree with you.

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Such is life, as you know. We all gotta go somehow. It just really sucks to have to see someone else go, and then keep living with that memory in your head. Having a twisted sense of humor helps, though :)

P. S. Thanks for that, dad!

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It is and we do have to go sometime. It does suck but I've worked out most of it now. A twisted sense of humour has saved me more times than I can count. It's doing infinite duty these days.

Love it that you thanked your Dad! 😊

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Wow, such an incredible story. Loved it. And so many lessons to learn from, so many memories to cherish from.

Really loved all the quotes too. Especially this one:

Be aware of the conditions around you, they change.

Thanks for sharing all these lessons and wisdom.

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Thank you @looftee! There's so much more than what I've put in this story. I picked out what felt right to highlight. Many, many cherished memories, as far back as when I was teething, that's the earliest one.

Thank you for checking my post out, leaving me a lovely comment (comments are delicious to me). It's been my pleasure to share, you're welcome.

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What a beautiful thing over here. I'd add that my relationship with both my parents isn't great. My father's parents were crazier than him. But my if my mom's parents were a source of knowledge and spoilage for me. A lot of the things I know now and they way I am comes by virtue of the interactions I had. Now, only grandma reminds and she isn't much for talking these days, but their job is already done. I just go by give her stuff and a big hug when I arrive and another before leaving.

This experiences of changing through the departure of loved ones is a step forward into understanding our own mortality and coming to terms with what makes life what it actually is. I love this style of self-comment through anecdotes. Lovely reading and message.

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Beautiful comment and sharing from your life, thank you!

This experiences of changing through the departure of loved ones is a step forward into understanding our own mortality and coming to terms with what makes life what it actually is.

Well put, I couldn't agree more.

I love this style of self-comment through anecdotes.

This is what I've been doing most of my life, LOL. This is the first time I've said it openly though. 🤣

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This is what I've been doing most of my life, LOL. This is the first time I've said it openly though. 🤣

Well, we all comment like that in our lives. Like we are in some movie of sorts. It's fine to see it put into a fine stream of thought. Also, very organized.

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We're in a movie? I need to upgrade. I'm still performing on live stage with minimal props and scenery.

I think you're very right, everyone does it. I've just never consciously thought about it until you mentioned it. Thank you. It's so good to get the feedback, to know I'm putting this together in a way that works well.

admits to being one of those fixated on organization types

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We're in a movie? I need to upgrade. I'm still performing on live stage with minimal props and scenery.

Well, I'm still of low budget experimental Latin American film stage. So, I'm telling you. It can be worse than having few props. 🤣

Hey, Virginia Woolf showed us all that stories can be put in very weird ways and still be considered as such. Anything goes if the form is consistent.

admits to being one of those fixated on organization types

I think all artists are very organized. Creativity needs to be grounded to work. In chaos, randomness can harm any process till there's nothing at all.

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I'm more down with "low budget" fits my choice of lifestyle. Experimental is the best.

Anything goes if the form is consistent.

Can't argue with that!

I think all artists are very organized.

I'm not typical of most artists. You haven't had the "funness" of seeing what I've seen. Most artists are, by nature, not organized, at least from what I've seen.

Grounded creativity is an interesting concept. I'm going to chew on that for a while. You're on point about chaos though. Those I've known, who have reached the upper echelons of the niche part of the fine art world I used to be a part of were very organized. It's a must have really. I guess I've seen a spectrum of artists and some absolutely crazy ones too.

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I'm not typical of most artists. You haven't had the "funness" of seeing what I've seen. Most artists are, by nature, not organized, at least from what I've seen.

Maybe not everything from their lives is organized, but their process tends to be. At least that much I hold to be true. However, my mind can be swayed by compelling arguments about this. There's a lot to learn about people and their ways.

Grounded creativity is an interesting concept.

Those are my two cents. Don't spend them at once! 🤣

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I've known a whole spectrum of artists. Some are highly organized with their art, but not with other aspects of their lives. Some are extremely organized about everything. Some are more balanced. Some are literally nuts. Some are a "hawt mess". Some are some of the closest friends I have (that's with a selective approach, mind you).

I'm saving those two cents. I need to sit with that concept and explore it more before I spend a teeny, tiny, microscopic part of a cent. Does that make cents?

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I've known a whole spectrum of artists. Some are highly organized with their art, but not with other aspects of their lives. Some are extremely organized about everything. Some are more balanced. Some are literally nuts. Some are a "hawt mess". Some are some of the closest friends I have (that's with a selective approach, mind you).

Some tiny little bit of organization goes on anything. Even messes are organized to some level. But I love the echelons of organization through those lens. A nice way to put it.

Does that make cents?

Maybe, you'll tell me once you dance with the idea.

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You encouraged me to look at the forest. 😉 You're quite right about messes being organized. I've seen that.

Maybe, you'll tell me once you dance with the idea.

I'll most definitely share. 🤣😚

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My pleasure. I'm also learning stuff from this exchanges.

I'll most definitely share. 🤣😚}

That't half of the experience! 😄

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It flows back and forth, the learning. I love that, savour it.

😂 Sharing is half the experience, I like that.

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It flows back and forth, the learning. I love that, savour it.

Oh, baby. I like it when you talk nerdy! 😏😘

😂 Sharing is half the experience, I like that.

An important part of it!

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🤣 Learning is one of the "spices" of life for me. Others are another "spice" of life, a very necessary one that I couldn't do without.

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🤣 Learning is one of the "spices" of life for me. Others are another "spice" of life, a very necessary one that I couldn't do without.

Spices are good to prevent consuming too much salt! Ha, ha, ha. But I get the point. I love learning. I can't stop myself from wanting to learn about a lot of things and that's how I spend a lot of the day.

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I've never met a pepper I couldn't eat, including ghost peppers (but never a whole fresh one of those at once).

I love learning. I can't stop myself from wanting to learn about a lot of things and that's how I spend a lot of the day.

The sweetest words and I am on that same page.

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I've never met a pepper I couldn't eat, including ghost peppers (but never a whole fresh one of those at once).

I like spicy stuff, but even more when it has flavor. Spice for spice' sake is a kind of weird thing.

The sweetest words and I am on that same page.

Sweet and sweet things! 😘

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I like spicy stuff, but even more when it has flavor. Spice for spice' sake is a kind of weird thing.

Agreed again. Must have flavour, not just heat, only way to be sweet 😘

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Agreed again. Must have flavour, not just heat, only way to be sweet 😘

Yes, it's like this show "Hot Ones" that's an interview eating buffalo wings. Some people hate certain hot sauces because they are pure spice and no flavor. That sounds horrible. But a flavorful spice is a piece of heaven (or hell). 🤣😘

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I've had the "pure" hot. It's so incredibly hot though that it ruins any experience of flavour. It is horrible. Balance is a must. I haven't seen "Hot Ones", but I think I've heard of it. Flavourful is all I do. I can't stand it any other way.

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Wow this hit me to the core. First of all I loved how you placed quotes after paragraphs to summarize what you learned from your Dad.

This gives me a good glimpse about you as a person actually. I got an idea about where exactly did you get your different forms of creativity from. I am glad your Dad was able to have this impact. Although he has passed away, you keep his memory alive by expressing creativity in your own way

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Wow this hit me to the core.

I have to ask what part that hit in your core, if you don't mind sharing.

Thank you @moon-city! He was very gifted and he inspired me that way. He's never done art. Music was his thing. He was most disappointed that I chose to pursue art and not music. Eventually, he accepted that. Most definitely, he and I are the same, we both loved to disappear into creativity, or working with our hands, even the most mundane of physical labour. I'm very grateful to share this with him and carry on after he's gone, in the some of the same ways he did when he was alive.

Most importantly, he lives on inside. All I have to do is reach in and he's there. I just miss the hugs and laughs most of all.

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Late 2006, he becomes sick, four months of that, while doctors try to “figure it out”. During that, they pumped him full of so many intravenous drugs that he almost died in the process.

This entire part really hit me. It is quite appalling of the medical team that was involved in this whole process to have put your Dad through this process.

I am glad that he accepted your choices. You are doing pretty well.

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It is appalling. This sort of medical mistreatment is far more common that most people are aware of. It impacted my entire family in such a way that it rippled out into a series of terrible events in addition to what my father was put through. One of the hardest for me was my mother blaming herself for years. I've never had much faith in the medical system. Once I went over all the medical documents, and investigated the drugs he was given (some of which they forced him to take against his will), my whole perception of medical care in this country changed permanently.

I am glad that he accepted your choices. You are doing pretty well.

I never gave him a choice, although I felt sad that I didn't have the same motivation to pursue music as I did art. I've only dabbled in music a bit. I'm content with where I am, so that's what matters.

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Nine I am extremely so ti hear about the ripple effects the medical mistreatment caused. Oh my goodness I feel awful that your mom blamed herself for years. I know a family friend who experienced a medical mishap and it was the same case...the mom blamed herself.

(some of which they forced him to take against his will), my whole perception of medical care in this country changed permanently.

This is appalling on too many levels. I can definitely understand why your perspective about the medical world has changed. It failed on many levels. I am proud of you to continue to keep pushing yourself in several creative endeavors.

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Yes, none of it was fun. It was a very good learning experience though. I am acutely aware of what many go through now, aside from my own experience. Everything, day to day, offers many learning opportunities, so that is what I focus on.

Definitely pushing myself creatively 🤣, thank you.

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Hello @nineclaws. Wisdom, caring, observant, strong, humorous, hard-working, and loving. All those things I felt while reading the story of your dad. You were extremely lucky to have him in your life.

I also didn't grow up with the luxury of having grandparents.

I absolutely love your story. It's witty, serious, and thoughtful. But most of all, it contains life lessons not just for you, but for anyone who cares to spot them. Coming from a parent, no matter whose it is, is an opportunity I wouldn't want to miss.

Thank you for sharing. Take care, and stay safe.

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You were extremely lucky to have him in your life.

I was extremely lucky to have him in my life. I've counted that up beyond what I could say.

I also didn't grow up with the luxury of having grandparents.

You've not had that experience either. Do you find you miss it also?

Thank you for all the lovely things you've said. 💜 I do wish to pass on anything I can to others, if it may be of assistance to them on their own paths.

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Yes, I've always missed it. Growing up, mostly all my friends would talk about or visit their grandparents. They talked about how much they loved them, and wished they could stay with them instead of their parents. It created a yearning in me that still exists.

For that reason, my grandchildren won't miss out.

I appreciate you taking the time to respond. You've given me an insight into your personality also shaped by those memories of your dad.

Take care.

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It created a yearning in me that still exists.

Yes, it did the same with me. At one point, I thought, can I put an ad out asking for grandparents I can adopt.

For that reason, my grandchildren won't miss out.

This is beautiful! I have found that experiences like this can be very motivating to one's own growth.

I appreciate you taking the time to respond. You've given me an insight into your personality also shaped by those memories of your dad.

Thank you, it's my pleasure.

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(Edited)

What a beautiful tribute to your father, truly heartwarming! So sad that he suffered with lengthy health issues, but what a legacy he left behind, and you're right, he lives on in your heart and soul.
I love your closing phrase:

Death is change, not an end point.

Thank you for sharing your touching story here in Silver Bloggers for @galenkp's contest!
Silver-Blond Lizzie

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Thank you Silver-Blond Lizzie, I'm so glad that you've enjoyed my post. Many suffer like this, as I know well, so that's always in my mind.

I live by that last statement. I'm touched you picked that out to highlight. It means so much to me.

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Wonderful writing and emotionally moving. I'll be back with another comment when it has time to sink in.

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Finally I got some time to check the posts I marked for reading and I am glad I did.
The bond between fathers and daughter are something very special,
Hmm now I know from where you got not only your skills but also your whacked out sense of humor.
It was so moving to read this piece.
I lost my dad when I was 12 my love for gardening, animals and nature came from him.
No matter how old or young you are a loss like this can never be filled.
Hugs to you.

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Hmm now I know from where you got not only your skills but also your whacked out sense of humor.

I was hoping it would clarify a few things, solve some mystery. 😁

I lost my dad when I was 12 my love for gardening, animals and nature came from him.

That is hard at such a young age. Lovely connection your father. He lives on in you.

Heart is the connection to those who have left the body. I reach in and he's right there. Thank you so much @sofs-su. Hugs back to you!

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Well this was just exquisite.

first - the pics..

Some pictures make me want to cry. Tattoodjay often brings me to this point with his beauty... that leaf point was it for me. I just felt my heart get squeezed and it just becomes unfathomable that something like this exists for a time, in the process of decay - looking like its gilded in gold... and soon to just blow away.

life is so fragile.

Of course I never knew your dad, but I could swear I saw him in my mind's eye - talking about rocks not being able to be taken. What a character! hehehe

I'm very thankful for the medicine we have. and the doctors who care. I dont' mean to sound ungrateful for the blessings that we have because people study medicine and give their lives to make others well.

But.

As a person who is still a medical mystery (and I am one of so many) to doctors who do NOT care as much... it is a tragedy. I've had the wonderful ones - but distance and time have separated us - and you find yourself "on your own" or worse... starting from square one - tempted to give up - and just handling your body the best way you can.

life is so fragile.

I'm thankful that he lives on in you. This is the gift we have for those treasures of people that we are blessed to have for seasons in our lives to shape and mold us.

Loved this post very much.
Thank you for inviting all of the readers to connect and "see" your dad in your words.

That's what matters :)

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Thank you for everything thing you wrote. I am so touched it brought me to tears as I read your words. You're very perceptive.

Some pictures make me want to cry. Tattoodjay often brings me to this point with his beauty... that leaf point was it for me. I just felt my heart get squeezed and it just becomes unfathomable that something like this exists for a time, in the process of decay - looking like its gilded in gold... and soon to just blow away.

That you've seen exactly what I saw and tried to capture Leaf Point, I rarely encounter someone who picks up on such nuances and subtle aspects to the degree that I now feel like you were standing there with me while I shot that. I am fascinated with the process of decay, the state of change.

Many heartfelt thanks for your words. I am deeply touched.

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Loved his sense of humor, hes one of my own, my fiancee says i got the worse kind of humor there is xD

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Thanks and you're pretty funny, I've seen the evidence. 😂 Maybe tell your fiancee to get comfortable, it's a package deal?

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I guess so, bad humo rand good life? See the other comment i leaved for you :3

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I saw the other comment you left for me, thanks. I'm all about laughter, I find so many things funny every day. I'm really not the one to advise except advice for myself. Best thing is to go day by day, live in the present.

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So I'm stopping by to give a more personal thank you. Thank you. Congratulations on the reward, got dang! Approaching triple digit comments, too, is that typical?

You're like all like popular n stuff.

Don't hate me cuz I'm beautiful I had a difficult decision. I appreciate entries like yours, not everyone gets a follow up thank you. I had a note next to yours, it said "authentic, difficult for her to write."

💖

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So I'm stopping by to give a more personal thank you. Thank you. Congratulations on the reward, got dang! Approaching triple digit comments, too, is that typical?

Thank you @dandays, it means a lot to me that you left a follow up thank you, you know how I love comments. Yeah, I'm blown away by all of it. I have no expectations, so it's always a surprise to me. I'm focused on trying to get a post together that pleases me (not easy to do, I'm a tough self-judge), after it's posted, I've let go of it. Whatever happens, happens. Not that I don't care; I know I have no control over outside events.

Don't hate me cuz I'm beautiful I had a difficult decision. I appreciate entries like yours, not everyone gets a follow up thank you.

No thought like that ever crossed my mind. Besides, green eyes and all, kinda like green eggs and ham, can't resist them, nor the funny, nor the authenticity that is who you are, plus adding in that serious side, all jokes aside. You did so well with this contest, thorough, serious, balanced, never missed a beat. You make a great judge.

I had a note next to yours, it said "authentic, difficult for her to write."

As I said, you never miss a beat. Admirable. Such an utter pleasure to know you and so glad I met you on Hive. Send any naysayers my way 😉

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Also, what the what the what did I just see? Yeah, you're total heart of gold, yup.

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Aren't I great at doing workarounds for swear words? the blue moon rare time you're going to hear me toot my own horn

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