October 28, 2013
Last Tuesday, Papa would have been 90.
He was kind, generous and unassuming.
Sometimes he pretended he couldn’t hear what Mama was saying, but we really knew the truth.
One of my favorite memories is taking them to the beach and starting to unload our bags… You see, we had everything you could need for two eighty year olds: oxygen tanks, beach chairs, you know, the normal beach packing stuff.
Everything except Mama’s clothes, and as only a Roper can do, she blamed it on Papa! She said and I quote, “Ken! How did you leave my bags at home?” Then she huffed out of the room to tell us, “I cannot believe he didn’t get my bags.”
Russ says I possess the Roper trait. Not. Good.
Mama and Papa’s love was that of storybooks. Not only the sweet, romantic kinds but the humorous.
For instance, Mama truly believes they were married 67 years. Before Papa died, I remember him telling my mom they were married 65 years.
Well, Mama told everyone who came to see him at Hospice they were married 67 wonderful years…pastor after pastor after pastor that came. Turns out, nope. It was 65. My dad had the record to prove it.
No one had the heart to tell her she was wrong.
Last week was tough for all of us. I tend to hide my emotions, as in I make excuses or find the bright side of the situation. For instance, when my mom said, “I can’t believe he’s not here. I just want to see him one more time…” I replied, “This is first birthday with his sons in eight years.”
But really, I miss him, too.
I wish I could walk back in their house one more time and watch Kuy make him laugh and see their identical blue eyes light up.
I wish he could see Cray’s blue eyes that are clearly his, too. How did I have TWO blue-eyed children when we ALL (all my cousins, all their kids, all my mom’s brothers and sister) have the same brown eyes?
I wish he could walk me out, one more time and blow me a kiss as I drive down the driveway.
I just want him to ask one more time, “What’d you say?”
Or hear him answer the phone in only the way he can, “Oh! Hey, honey!”
I miss him.
I was the only girl.
I was his little girl (sorry, Mom).
He left a legacy behind. In my devotion and in a blog post I read today, here, they both mentioned how important the legacy you leave behind is. What will yours be? Money? Nice clothes? A pretty house? Or a relationship with God? The satisfaction of knowing where your family will spend eternity together?
May your legacy be that of my grandparents…knowing who to call on …knowing if I needed something, they would pray. Knowing if I needed anything, they would be there. Knowing they would stop heaven and earth because that’s how much they loved me.
Imagine people. That’s how much God loves us. Even more than that really.