Thursday, December 9, 2010

Head Clearing

It is kind of crazy to me how I can feel on top of the world one day, and then the next, feel like the rug was just ripped out from under me.  Such is life I guess.  Our family recieved some not so great news about my 90 year old grandfather today (who if you have read THIS post, you know where he is in my world). 

I was strong at the hospital when my Aunt told me what the Doctor said. 

I had been hanging out with my 87 year old grandmother in the waiting room.  My grandmother doesn't hear so well, so I was writing down and explaining to her about being invited to be part of Team Trakkers (WOOT).  When I really want to be sure she understands me, I write it down.  This has caused a lot of scrambling for paper if we forget to bring some.  I started this after she went to the store one time and my Aunt asked her to pick her up some tacks, and she came back with Tampax. 

See, she kind of hears things, but she doesn't always get the whole story.

Anyway, I looked up as my Aunt walked in, and I just had to look into her eyes to know it was bad news.  Then I watched as my grandfather shuffled behind her, his shoulders slumped, his head down.  The twinkle gone from his eyes.  His face was pale. He looked defeated, something I never thought I would ever see.

I swallowed hard and took a deep breath, and asked my Aunt what was up.

She told me the news, and I will just say wasn't very good.  The worst part was, her eyes told more, but I didn't ask.  I could see the questions in my grandmother's eyes and I knew she didn't hear and didn't understand exactly what was going on, but she knew it was bad.  I reached for some paper and she put her hand on mind and shook her head, "Later," she said.

So, we walked out the door, there really wasn't much else for us to do.  To the people in the waiting room, we were the ones who got the bad news, the 4 broken people trying to find their way to the car.  I hugged Pop as we walked out, and he kissed the top of my head, just said, "Oh my Mandy girl."

Once alone in my truck, I was numb.  I was jagged.  I had loud screaming crying fits wondering why it took them so FING long to figure this out, followed by long brooding silences, followed by more screaming crying fits (it was all very Sybil like). 

All I wanted to do was go home and curl into a ball.  That actually sounded like a perfectly wonderful idea.  Maybe I could stay up there for a few days.  Yeah.

But as I drove, I realized that would be a complete dishonor to my grandfather

No.  That is not who I am. I don't do the easy thing. I never have.  I am my grandfather's girl, and she doesn't just sit around and mope.


So when I got home, I ran.

I quickly got dressed and headed outside.  It was 10 degrees and dark, and I didn't care.  Bring it.  Bring the snow. Bring the ice and rain and sleet.  I don't care.  I ran past the post office and charged up the hill, the salty tears freezing to my face, my eyelashes sticking together from the cold.   

My breath came out in short white puffs.  I ran past the coyotes howling on the hill behind our neighbors house.  I ran through the "dark section," where there is one light out and your mind plays these crazy tricks on you.  I ran past the many houses that are dark and empty and seem so lonely, and I ran past the few houses that are lighted and full of life.  I turned around and did it again and again and again until I felt "right". 

I am not sure where I would be without running.  It resets my head in a way nothing else does.  Running tonight helped me to see that no matter what happens, no matter what the doctor tells us tomorrow, whether it is good news or bad news - I need to spend as much time as possible with my grandparents.  They are really special, and you never know when some bad news might turn your Superman into a regular ole normal human.

36 comments:

Jeffrey said...

I'm so sorry - you and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. And yes...thankfully we have such a positive outlet for our "reset"

Kiersten said...

I'm so sorry. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers. I went through something similar with my grandfather last month, and I work as a Nurse Practitioner, so if you need a place to vent, cry, ask questions, I'm always here.

One Crazy Penguin said...

This post has me in tears. I recently lost my grandmother and I have so many regrets about the lack of time I had with her. I've been spending more and more time with my grandfather, but it's never enough.

I'll keep you and your family and your grandfather in my prayers. Hopefully tomorrow will bring you good news. He sounds like a simply astounding man.

Jeff - DangleTheCarrot said...

Very, very sorry Mandy! That had to be difficult to write and you very strong to have the courage to do it! You and your family will be in our thoughts.

Alex said...

Hugs!!!

She said I need a goal said...

I'm keeping you and your family in my prayers. Grandparents are such a special gift, I still miss mine, all of them but especially my dad's father who sounds very much like your grandfather.

Running does help. Hugs.

Aimee said...

I'm so sorry Mandy. I'm sending lots of virtual hugs your way. That just must have been so extremely hard to go through. I will definitely keep you, your family, and your grandfather in my thoughts and prayers.

Shannon (IronTexasMommy) said...

I am so sorry that you and your family are facing such a difficult time. You are all in my thoughts and prayers. Wishing you the strength you need and hoping for more positive news.

Ironman By Thirty said...

I'll be keeping you and your family in my thoughts and prayers!

Detroit Runner said...

I am not sure where I would be without running.

Amen!

The Green Girl said...

::big big hugs::

ONEHOURIRONMAN said...

So sorry. Sending as many positive vibes your way from Norway.

Robin said...

I'm so sorry. It's hard when those we are so closed to become older, more fragile, closer to passing. Running is such a blessing to work through times like these. Thinking of you and your family.

KC (my 140 point 6 mile journey) said...

Mandy, I'm sending you big hugs and lots of positive thoughts from Tampa. Amazing how running can be such a great medicine. Keeping you and your fam in my thoughts and prayers. ((((hugs))))

Jon said...

Big virtual thoughts and hugs heading your way!!! SO sorry to hear this!

JenniferLeah said...

I'm sorry :( I can relate; my grandma "MEM" was my Superwoman~my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family.

Big Daddy Diesel said...

Big Bear Hug, My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family

Laura said...

Oh Mandy.. I am so so sorry to hear this news. Hang in there! Give the ol' man lots of attention and hugs (the ol' lady too). It sounds like he has had a very long full life. I know this is little consolation at this point, but try hard to celebrate all that has been.. not what is to come! Love that you went and pounded the pavement to deal with it all.

big hug to you and the family. thinking about you.

Christi said...

I am so sorry that you and your family have received bad news. I like some of the others shed tears when reading this post so please know that I am here for ya. I may be far and away and I may have never met you in person but I want to help if I can. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers!

Regina said...

So eloquently written, Mandy. I feel your pain and I am sorry for you. I was very close to my grandfather and my grandmother, so I know what bad news feel like when it involved them. Be strong for him; you're his girl, you can do it. I'll keep him in my thoughts and prayers and drop a little note for him in my God box.

I know how the running heals too. When my sister died many years ago I ran. Which is remarkable because I was not running at the time, in fact, wasn't a runner at all, but it helped a lot.

Hang in there.

Copychic said...

So sorry to hear your pain. I was extremely close to my grandfather, my grandparents practically raised me, and losing him was tough. The biggest thing is to appreciate the time you have and the many memories and good times you have shared. My thoughts are with you and your family.
Run out the pain, lady.

TRI-james said...

running - as much for mental health as anything else.

Runners Fuel said...

I'm so sorry to hear about your grandfather! I hope you get some good news tomorrow. Run you big heart out!

Joel said...

Mandy - you and your family are in my prayers.

Krista said...

I'm so sorry to hear this Mandy! Sending big hugs your way!

Emz said...

mandy.

Thinking/praying for you from AZ.

Hang in there. You are amazing.

HUGS.

Colleen said...

Oh Mandy, I'm so sorry! You and your family will be in my thoughts and prayers! ((HUGS))

Shannon said...

i just read that post about your grandfather, so wonderful. and inspirational! i'm so sorry, sending along some hugs!!

atltrihollywood said...

I know I've gone on many angry runs to clear my soul; it's the only way I get my alone time. Your grandfather will be in my prayers

P said...

Oh, Mandy, I'm so sorry about the bad news. Grandparents hold such a special place in our hearts. ::hugs::

DRog said...

Hi Mandy,

I am so sorry to hear about the bad news for your Grandrfather. You and your family are in my thoughts and prayers...

Derek

Megan said...

I'm sorry about your Grandfather. Reading this choked me up a little, but I can relate with you about running when things are bad, it feels good and that emotion can carry us so far.

Tanya said...

It's so great that your grandparents have you & your family surrounding them with love. And so sorry about the bad news - my prayers go out to your fam.

Glenn Jones said...

My heart is heavy with this news Mandy. Hugs.

Anne-Marie said...

I'm so sorry to hear this... can't imagine how difficult it must be for you and your family. You're all in my prayers. **hugs**

Barb said...

I am so sorry to read about your grandfather's health. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. Take Care and enjoy your time with both your grandparents.

I cherish my memories of time spent with my grandparents.