Here I sit. Another shift at AHE. This one is hopping, though, so it's all good. We have an OD that was sent to the hospital, a father in with his daughter right now, desperate because she continues to try to OD, then we have an agressive elderly lady snoring in the waiting room. Ah, the fun never ends.
I have been wanting to get something off my chest (althought Leon says I cannot afford to) for a little bit now, and, seeing as this is the only chance I ever have to write, I am just now getting to it. This is in no way to make people feel guilty or anger anyone. There is no repressed anger from my youth. It just is what it is.
I got a card from "Gramma Dolly" a few weeks ago. Inside was a picture of my paternal grampa. It stopped me in my tracks for a few minutes. I have never really gone where my head and heart took me in those first moments, but now I can't seem to shake it.
I felt sad. I felt more than a little bit ripped off. I felt awful. Not all for me though. I felt also for a man that I really never got to know. Here, just a province over, were three grandchildren that he didn't get to know. Did he understand that our annual phonecalls were of duty and our parents were standing there making us talk to these people that we hardly knew? Could he sense our discomfort? The awkward silences? I feel terrible just saying it. But we were kids, and kids don't think, and they definitely don't consider other's feelings.
It's amazing, really, all the thoughts that went through my head in such a short time. (Who would have ever thought me capable???) I switched places for a moment, and it was me taking obligatory phone calls from grandchildren who didn't care to talk to me. It was my own kids not knowing their grandparents - thankfully, they know both sides well. I felt for my Dad in that brief moment. How did he feel watching us talk to his dad? Did we roll our eyes? Fight that obligatory phone call, while happily taking the monetary gift he sent? I may have purposely erased memories of my behavior from my mind. I am thankful for that gift my subconscious gave me by removing it.
The other thing that went straight to my heart was that I missed getting to know him. I was just a kid, what did I know then of what I was missing? Would more visits to Saskatchewan have helped? I'm not sure. Probably. I wonder now, in my advanced age, what he was like? I know Charlene said that with Gramma Arndt, I missed out. That couldn't be helped. I should have known my Grampa Arndt, though. And to shoulder some of the blame, I was 25 when he passed away. I was old enough at that point to make that journey on my own. He could have known two of his great-grandchildren. Why didn't I think, even then, that it was incredibly important? Oh, hindsight and all.....
Again, I must say, this was in no way intended for anyone but me to feel terrible, just so you know (Mom).