Yesterday, we had my grandpa’s service, and my mom and her sister and brothers spoke about my grandpa. We sang hymns that I remember singing while standing next to him in the pew. It was a lovely time with family. But something was missing. And that something is the story I am going to tell here.
My mom and her siblings spoke about how my grandpa was stubborn and strict and gruff, and those things were true for me when I was small, though they changed as I spent more time with Grandpa and as he retired. When we were very young, my cousins and I were a little bit afraid of him because he was so strict. That’s important to know before I tell you this.
My older cousin David and I were playing hide-and-seek at our grandparents’ house, hiding from my brother. We decided that he would never find us if we hid in the shower in my grandparents’ room. We stayed there for a while, and then the door opened. We thought we had been caught. But, instead, we heard the unmistakable sounds of Grandpa, going to the bathroom. It was . . . noisy. We giggled, as children do. And Grandpa, who was (needless to say) startled just a bit, made us come out of hiding and leave the bathroom. I believe his exact words were, “Come on through.” Heads down, we hightailed it out of there. We were sure Grandpa was going to chew us out for being in his bathroom, but nothing happened. None of us spoke about it, as if by some silent agreement. We did not hide there ever again.
Many years later, when David and I were teenagers, we entertained the entire family with a telling of this story. Both our mothers were in tears. They didn’t believe us at first, thought for sure that we were embellishing, so we had to get Grandpa to back us up, which he did. That’s my favorite memory of him, confirming the story and laughing right along with us.
Yesterday, after my mom and my aunt and uncles had spoken, I leaned over to mom and said, “I am going to go up there to represent the grandchildren and tell the poop story.” We all giggled a bit right there in the pew. And that is what’s saving my life this week.
What is saving your life this week?