Tuesday, May 12, 2015

For China Relief!

I haven't really written much about my grandparents lately.  Life just gets away from me with a baby.  A lot has happened since I wrote here regularly.

There is a lot of video footage to go through from several years ago from the dinners with my grandparents where I asked them to tell me stories.

My grandparents' great grandchild was born on New Year's Eve 2013.  At least my grandmother doesn't have to ask me if it's twins anymore.

This past December, my grandmother fell and fractured her pelvis. My grandfather couldn't help her up and she ended up in the hospital, and then rehab again.

Then my grandfather developed severe edema from his horrible diet and he could no longer walk while my grandmother was in the hospital, and he too ended up in the hospital.  My parents decided this was "the event." They had to go to a care facility.

When my grandfather got out of the hospital, he didn't go home. He went to Golden Age, which is an elder care home a few blocks away from my house.  And he had to be there without his wife on Christmas Eve and Christmas.  We brought him to visit her both days, but he was so lonely and so sad and I felt like we were monsters.

In the meantime, my parents, my godparents, and I began the heart-wrenching and often equally disgusting task of cleaning out their house.  60 years of stuff is a lot of stuff.  My grandparents wouldn't qualify for "Hoarders," but probably a close second.  I took some pictures and journaled about it... maybe I'll write about the experience more in depth some day.  Maybe it's just another thing that sits in my sieve of a mind that I think will one day be an essay, but it's just leaking out silently while I try to keep my job and my baby fed and clean.

In any case, the whole reason for this post, was that during the whole clean out, I early-inherited whatever I wanted to take.  I ended up taking a number of things, but I think one of my favorite things was this hollow glass brick that my great uncle Kaye had engraved with "FOR CHINA RELIEF!" for my grandfather.  My grandfather used it as a piggy bank of sorts and he'd put money in it to send back to his family in China every month.  I liked that story.

I've turned my grandfather's piggy bank into a little succulent garden and I put it in my room.


I look at it and I think of my grandfather and how much he cared about his family and how hard he worked to provide for his family in America as well as his family in China.  I miss when we were both young and could play together, when he'd remember things, and knew what was going on all the time.

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