Thursday, February 7, 2008
Close to Nowhere
In a funny twist of events Jason, my former son-in-law who lives in South Dakota, is on his way back to Mississippi -- and I’d just carried him to the airport at 5 a.m. Sunday.
His grandfather, J.C. Collins -- or Pappaw to nearly everyone who knew him -- passed away the following Tuesday morning.
Jason had flown down last week after Pappaw broke his hip and had a stroke during the surgery to repair the hip. Pappaw hadn’t been doing well for some time now, and everyone knew his time to leave us was coming closer.
Pappaw hadn’t been comfortable or happy since Mammaw (Inez Collins) passed away a couple years ago. They had been married 62 years when she died.
There was a lot of laughter, along with the tears, at Mammaw’s funeral. Pappaw really laughed at being called the thorn to Mammaw’s rose.
And then the preacher gently reminded all of us that while a thorn is prickly, it also protects and guards the rose.
My granddaughters are Pappaw’s great-granddaughters and he fiercely loved all his grands and greats.
A devoted chocoholic, Pappaw was the one who introduced Meredith to Hershey’s. Poor Meredith’s parents, my daughter and their grandson, were of the opinion that babies didn’t need chocolate or sugary treats, etc. and at 18 months old, Meredith had never tasted any of “that.”
But, she fell and bumped her head on the coffee table at their house her second Christmas -- Pappaw picked her up and was consoling the sobbing baby.
The story I heard from her parents was really funny. Pappaw sat in the corner cuddling Mere -- said parents thought she was still shaking from the accident.
Actually, Pappaw had filled a shirt pocket with Hershey’s Kisses and Meredith was cramming them in her mouth as fast as she could and shaking in the effort to get the Kisses all eaten before she and Pappaw got caught!
I think one of Mammaw and Pappaw’s biggest concerns when my daughter and their grandson divorced was would they still be able to be close to the girls.
I’m sure in some families, in fact many families, this wouldn’t work, but for us -- everyone remained close and “family.”
Jason has often laughed and called the group of “them and us” a dysfunctional family unit.
And I guess we are. Jason’s new wife Amanda is very nice and we all like her. Remy, the “baby” is especially taken with her and won’t let anyone say she’s her stepmother. Remy says stepmothers are mean, so therefore, Amanda is her mother-in-law. End of discussion!
And now, the patriarch of this dysfunctional family has gone on to meet up with Mammaw.
Welcome home Pappaw...
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