November is a month that is bittersweet for me. I love Thanksgiving. As we prepare for the holidays, I am overwhelmed with gratitude for all the blessings in my life (check me out at Instagram to view my 30 Days of Gratitude Challenge). Unfortunately, November is also tainted with a sadness. Both my grandfathers and my step-brother passed around the holiday (for the story of my step-brother, click here).
You are probably thinking, “Wow! So much death around the holidays – how sad!” It actually isn’t uncommon for loved ones to pass around the holidays, I’ll talk about that a little more in a future blog.
And to be honest, even though I grew up knowing my paternal grandfather passed on Thanksgiving, it didn’t phase me. I never knew him. In fact, the first time my mother “met” him was at his funeral. My parents were planning on travelling to NYC that Thanksgiving and announcing their engagement, but instead of celebrating the happy news they were celebrating my grandfather’s sudden death. He had been suffering symptoms while preparing Thanksgiving dinner. Convinced to see his doctor, he suffered a massive heartache while sitting in his doctor’s office.
His passing was just part of his story. It just was.
My maternal grandfather’s passing, on the other hand, was much harder. I knew him. We were close. And while he was ill, he had lung cancer, and we KNEW he was dying, we didn’t expect for him to go so quickly. In fact, being as his birthday was just a couple days after Thanksgiving and we knew it would be his last, we had a large birthday party planned.
He didn’t make it. And that was hard.
It wasn’t the concept of his death, however, that was hard. I’d had family members pass before. I’d even had a friend I’d known since elementary school pass the year before. So I was keenly aware of the concept of death and what it meant.
What was different about this was witnessed some of the things a dying person experiences that assists them with their transition.
Here is what I learned from my grandfather’s passing:
When my grandfather told me he loved me, I knew I was never going to see him alive again. And sure enough, less than an hour later, the phone rang. I remember sitting at the top of the stairs and starting to cry before my mom even got off the phone. It had been my grandmother letting us know “Al was gone.” When they arrived home he went upstairs to his apartment, she stayed downstairs to let the dog out. When she made her way upstairs, he was already gone.
He was ready. He had done the things he wanted to.
Each November, these memories flood back. They are bittersweet… and while sadness floods in at first, I am immediately reminded and comforted that we had that one last Thanksgiving. Love you Grandpa!
Dawn Lynn is an EveryDay medium. She lives and breathes via her intuition, which as a fourth generation intuitive from a family of Spiritualists came easily. Her abilities became apparent in early childhood and were cultured by a supportive family. Through her Blogs and Vlogs, she wants to help you become the EveryDay medium too.