I asked my dad if I could share what he wrote recently to Elliot. He graciously said yes, and being that he’ll unlikely ever start a blog of his own (though he could), I am honored to share it with the world.
My dad is a guy who thinks deeply and feels deeply. Maybe that’s where I get it from. But I have not known him to express the depth of his thoughts and feelings so openly and eloquently as he has since three of his grandbabies went to heaven. My dad is the BEST grandpa in the world, playfully interacting with Sylvia and Valerie and enjoying every moment he spends with them. The sudden and sad departures of Avery, Everett, and Elliot from this earth have affected him profoundly. He misses them and the relationships he would’ve had with them.
Soon after I miscarried Avery, he wrote a beautiful poetic tribute to her. He recently gave me an updated tribute that also included Everett. Then we lost Elliot. Soon after Elliot died, he wrote a note to Elliot and God, brimming with pain and love, and lamenting what should’ve been.
Last night my dad gifted his latest work of writing to me. I leave you with the words he wrote, because there is nothing more I could add to express the love and longing Elliot’s family feels. This is how a grandpa feels. This is how a grandpa grieves. This is how a grandpa loves. Thank you, Dad, for honoring my son.
Me and Elliot
“Grandpa! Let’s go outside and play baseball! It’s sunny and there’s no wind, so let’s do it!”
“Okay, Elliot,” I say, “Let me get my shoes on and finish this last swallow of coffee.”
Elliot is spending the afternoon with Grandpa while his big sisters are at a birthday party for one of Sylvie’s friends. Besides, big sisters are into things other than baseball, which their five-year-old brother loves so much.
We set up in the backyard and I throw to Elliot and slam! Over my head goes the first ball. Elliot has become quite good at hitting the ball. His hand-eye coordination is really good! He must take after his sister Sylvie who used to play baseball with Grandpa in the basement.
“Well, we better take a break, Elliot,” I say. “I’m getting tired of chasing all of your slammers. Let’s go in and watch a Paw Patrol.”
“Okay, Grandpa. I sure like playing baseball with you!”
I wake up in my chair in my den still holding my empty coffee cup. It seemed so real. I think…I sure hope they have bats and balls in heaven. That’s the first thing I will look for after I see Elliot.