Thursday, February 23, 2012

Dear Gracin

Sweet little man,

It is 5:30 in the morning, and no, I don't really want to be awake. Your strong daddy got up to workout, and the movement of him getting up reminded my bladder to send me running for the commode. After peeing, my stomach said, "feed me," and now the threat of vomiting has removed the ability to lay down.

I'm just up.

The past week has been so difficult. This week we had to say goodbye to someone we loved very much. Your daddy had to watch his grandfather go to meet Jesus.

While there is no sadness in saying goodbye to someone who knows and loves the Lord, there is always sadness at realizing there were so many more things that needed to be said to or done with that person before they left. One of the biggest things we wanted to do with Granddad was watch him hold you. Oh my, how you would have loved him!

Granddad was one of the sweetest men I ever met. He loved Bluebell ice cream--the reason you will probably never eat generic vanilla or chocolate icy decadence. Granddad made sure that your daddy inherited the love for "good" ice cream. He also loved his grandkids. He loved your daddy, Aunt Kaci, and your second cousins so very much. He would have done anything for them.

One of his fingers was partially cut off while working one day many years ago. Your daddy remembers how sometimes, if he was being naughty or disrespectful, Granddad would take that bony "nub" and rap it on the top of his head. I know if Granddad were still here he would have rapped your head sometimes too. And you know what? You would have deserved it....I never saw him speak or discipline out of turn.

This big, wise man taught your daddy so many lessons while he grew up. There are things that Daddy remembers and lives in his life that are a result of what his Granddad taught him. I guess your mama takes comfort in knowing that, although you won't get to know Granddad personally as you grow, you will still learn what Granddad taught because of who your daddy is.

What hurts us most after losing him is that your granddad was possibly the most excited family member about you coming. No, he might not have squealed when we first announced you were growing inside me, but he talked on the phone to Daddy and gushed about how proud he was and what great parents we would be. We couldn't wait to see him hold his great-grandson and gaze at his pride over another man to carry on the Bartlett name. He was one of your daddy's biggest encouragers, and your daddy adored him.

Granddad believed that "you don't raise your kids. As a parent you raise your grandkids." In other words, parent in such a way as you want your grandkids parented. I take comfort in knowing that your daddy will carry on so many of the traits and character taught to him by his grandfather.

I can't believe how quickly you will be here, little one! Six more weeks until you are cuddled in your crib or wailing for me to feed you at this time of the morning. We have so many stories to tell you, so many lessons to teach you, so many kisses to give you. Grow quickly, son, and know that you are adored by so many....


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