As I searched for this picture, I cried. This day, on separate years, I lost two very important people in my life. Even now, the reason for the emotion behind it has been a secret. When I first stopped drinking, and a few months later, came to know to Lord as my Savior, it became my hearts desire for my grandparents to see a change in my life. I had stolen and manipulated them for years. Oh how I loved them, but I was hurting and selfish during those horrible years. In my spirit, I began asking the Lord to give me two years of sobriety and changed life. I begged Him to not take my grandparents before I celebrated those two years sobriety for no reason other that they could see a changed, repentant heart. In the year 2000, on July 7th, I celebrated two years of sobriety. On July 28th, the Lord took my Granny home. I am often torn between thankfulness that God granted me my heart’s desire and guilt that I cut her life short by not asking for more years.
The other person our family lost on this day, my Pappow. The Lord took him home on this day, 2010. It was my Pappow’s words to me that one day cut me so deep that promoted the desire to change. I had been evicted because I used my rent money to drink. The same money he and Mammow had sent for the rent. I arrived in Pensacola from Beaufort with nothing but a dog (yes, once an animal lover, always an animal lover) and black bags of clothes. Kayla had been visiting my Mammow and Pappow for the summer when the conviction came so instead of taking her back to Beaufort, they brought her to Pensacola. My grandfather looked at me, looked at my pack of cigarettes on the table setting on the porch, and with disappointment and probably disgust, told me, “you are pathetic and will never amount to anything.” He then walked away. My heart was broken. The man I idolized was disappointed in me. I pray I will never forget that moment. It was then I quit the cycle of lies. I had lied so much I didn’t even know the truth. While I am not financially successful as I yearn to be, my Pappow died knowing I adored him, and I know he adored me.
I miss them both every day.