We are on this planet for such a short period of time, and when we look back on our lives, there will be moments that we remember more than any other. There are moments that, when you are experiencing them, you just know they are special.
I had one of those moments on Saturday night. Elizabeth had a gymnastics practice in Sherwood Park, and rather than watching a bunch of people twirling and tumbling for two hours, I decided to go visit my grandpa. I called him up, having to cut the phone call short because he couldn't hear what I was saying, but I did know that he was thrilled that I was coming over.
As I arrived through his front door, the first thing I noticed was his new chair. Since he returned from the hospital, he has been sleeping in an old green recliner, the one that was in my grandparents' basement forever, because he was too uncomfortable sleeping flat on a bed. That chair was old and hard, and I don't know how he slept in it (apparently, not very well). His new chair, however, was like a fluffy cloud of comfort, and I could see the happiness on my grandpa's face, joy that I hadn't seen in a long time. The chair has a remote control so that he can lie back or stand up with no effort, and he said he hadn't slept so well in years.
We sat in his little room and watch the football game, eating cashews out of his big jar from Costco, and I asked if he felt like a cup of tea. He exclaimed, "I was just thinking how nice a cup of tea would be!" I boiled the water, loaded the tray with sugar and a cup, and brought it over to his chair. He sat and drank tea with a smile, and for a moment I forgot all of the stresses of the past year; it was just me and my grandpa having a cup of tea and watching the football game.
As I left, I gave him a hug as I always do, but this time he held me close for a long time. He said, "Do you remember going to the Yukon?" (I didn't, since I wasn't yet three years old.) He continued, "You sat in the back of the trailer and looked at me and waved. I have so many good memories; I have lived a good life."
My grandma often had spoken about that day that we left for Whitehorse, how I just looked at them both as we drove away. My grandma and grandpa both lived full and happy lives, their legacy continuing on with children and grandchildren and great grandchildren. The moments that they are likely remembering are the moments that truly mattered in their long lives.
And I ask myself: What are the moments that I want to remember?