Today is my (Cori) Grandpa's birthday, he's 95 years old. Awesome, right?!?!
YES!! Well, kind of.
The reality of life on the road is that we miss special moments with the people we love. Even though it's incredible being out here, seeing all that we see, it honestly gets really hard to be away from family. Andy's mom's birthday was yesterday, too. So it's been a bit of a double whammy around here.
While we are crazy-thankful that we are able to do this, it tugs at our heartstrings whenever we think of those we've left behind. Now, this isn't to say we won't be home eventually. We know we want to go back to Buffalo one day, but now is the time for us to explore. On days like today, though, it's easy to wish we were back home, celebrating with the people we care about most. You see, I've always been very close with my Grandpa. My grandparents were around a lot when I was little, and I think the man has enough home videos of me hula-hooping or skipping-it (any 90s kid should know what I mean) to last a lifetime.
But that's all we get, one lifetime to make it count.
Some background: Frank is one of the coolest guys you'll ever meet. He has stories for days, tells it like it is, and loves looking up old actors or war ships. When I lived at home, we had a weekly date to catch up new stuff or just hang out. This ritual started a long time ago, but after losing my Grandma I couldn't imagine not spending more time with him. Blanche was an amazing woman, and anyone who met her would have agreed. She was vivacious, loving, and didn't take anyone's shit. And she never let you leave without eating. Any grade-school friend can attest to having a banana milkshake shoved in their face the instant they walked in the door. After losing her (damn you, Dementia), the idea of leaving my Grandpa was one of the hardest things I had to face about this adventure.
So to make it feel like we're not that far away, we try to include family in the things that we do. I mean, honestly, that was the whole reason this blog started. We needed a way to be able to share with family and friends back home, and if it happened to find others to inspire then that's even better. So we face-time when we have service, encourage visitors whenever they're willing to book a flight, and add places to our list that we know will make our families smile. Soon, we hope to get to the Tillamook Air Museum, which is in the same hanger that my Grandpa served in during WWII.
There is no real end to this article, just the truth about how it feels when you're out on the road. We don't have an answer on how to make the sting go away. We know this probably won't get much easier, because how could it? But like everything else about this life, we're hoping it's worth it. Sure, we will miss out on some memories, but we're working to create our own as well, and our families know that. We know we'll get to share stories with everyone during the holidays, but for now you'll have to read the musing of a girl missing her Grandpa.
Grandpa: I know you'll read this soon, so happy birthday again and I love you so much!