This is Grandpa meeting Coleman for the first time. It was so sweet. Grandpa could barely talk but said "AAAW" when we showed him Coleman and held him up for him to see.
Grammy kissing Coleman... her newest great grandchild. I think it was actually good for everyone to have Coleman there... almost healing. To have this sweet new life there while we were helping prepare my grandpa to die sort of kept things in balance and reminded us all about the cycle of things.
My aunt Melanie (she took care of us all and kept us well fed), Uncle Joel, Mom and Cassidy. We were getting ready to song hymns for grandpa. We stayed up really late every night and one of the things we loved to do was sit in his room and reminisce and sing.
Throughout the week grandpa would often ask to see the baby. It was really touching to me because he would ask at random times when Coleman wasn't even around. It meant a lot to me because he was fading so quickly and that was sort of a sign that he was still there mentally and aware of things. This is my mom and 3 of my cousins, Haylie, Brittany, and Cassidy.
Dallas Sophie, Brittany (with Cole) and Aunt Melanie.
My mom, Aunt Melanie and Uncles Dallas and Joel. Four of my grandpa's 5 children were there to help along with 5 grand daughters. A lot of other family and friends stopped by to visit and called to talk to grandpa throughout the week.
My beautiful grammy... she's a rock. She was my buddy all week. Coleman and I slept in her bed with her and it was so nice to wake up early in the morning... I would lay there nursing Coleman and she and I would talk for about an hour about everything... then go back to sleep. It was our little secret time and it meant so much to me to talk to her about grandpa and their life together.
Visiting with grandpa. It was nice to just sit in there with him as he slept. It was quiet and peaceful and the perfect opportunity to think about my life with him and what a great man he was.
Trying to keep up on things... my uncles thought it was funny how I would balance Coleman on my knee while I caught up on my email and read a few blogs so they took this picture. They should see me type while I nurse!
I mentioned before how grandpa was always asking to see Coleman. We would lay him in the bed next to him and they would sit there together for a while. I loved this shot of Cole looking up at him. We would say that because Coleman was so fresh from God and grandpa was on his way home they were probably exchanging secrets and kind of passing on the way in and on the way out.
It truly was a wonderful, emotional, fun, exhausting, fulfilling week. I will never forget the experiences, joy and love from this week. My uncles and my mom are my heros. I have a whole knew level of respect and love for my extended family. I so admire my grammy and her strength through this whole thing. I left on Monday, exactly one week after I first heard the news. He had deteriorated a lot just in the 5 days I was there. I said good bye to him that morning before I went to the airport. It was hard, but this is exactly how my grandpa wanted to go and I am happy for him. He was able to live a full, healthy life right up to the end. My mom said that by Monday night he was pretty much gone... no more communication. He hung on for a couple more days and died peacefully early in the morning on Thursday, October 23rd. From start to finish it was only 10 days.
"Old soldiers never die, they just fade away..."