Y'all know that I'm pretty conservative about putting personal information out there for all to see on the interwebz...part of it is just that my blog was begun as a way to share pictures of critters, etc. So while I try to "keep it real" and share some of what's going on with me, I don't post pictures of myself or my family. But I decided this week that I needed to share a couple of pictures of my birthday buddy who is no longer with us.
I was born on my maternal grandfather's birthday. He and I were always special buddies :) If I had time I could write the longest post I've ever written telling you wonderful things about my granddaddy...about how he was a true southern gentleman....about how he lived life to the fullest, always involved in giving back to his family, his church, his community....about how he maintained a child-like wonder and joy in everyday life through all of his 98 years on this planet.
But what I really felt drawn to share with you is just about how I always think of him especially on my birthday. There were only 2 years that we missed celebrating together over the years...Yesterday I told my Mom about a traditional conversation that Granddaddy and I had every year for many of my earlier years...and I was surprised to realize that she didn't know this. You see, when I was little I loved to hear the story of the day I was born. As you can imagine, since it was Granddaddy's birthday the family was "rooting" for me to be born that day (or at least he was!). With a flair for the dramatic that was surely a taste of what was to come, I made my dramatic entrance into this world....at 3 minutes before midnight! (I always imagine they had all but given up on me making it on the appropriate day...I still love a good dramatic entrance!) So the conversation that I used to have every year with my Granddad went something like this:
Me: "Granddaddy, what time were you born?" (Always wondering if he'd waited 'til the last minute as well.)
Granddad: "I don't know. I didn't look at the clock."
It was many years before I realized that he really had no idea as they didn't keep the types of birth records in the year he was born that we have now. But that also is a prime example of his sense of humor....he loved to crack little jokes and tease, but was never, ever, malicious.
I'm grateful that I was shaped by the steadfast love of this gentle man. He remains an inspiration to me....a humble, spiritual man who quietly "showed up" for life, doing what he could to make the world a better place in his little corner of it--not seeking accolades, but doing it because it was the right thing to do.
I miss you birthday buddy, but am forever grateful for the time I had you here with me!