Hi Sweetie, I have known you for just over 9 years and 2 months. I met you when you were about an hour old, and held you when you a little over 24 hours old. You captured my heart the moment we met. Cari you have been magically special to me since that very 1st day. I am sure by the time you read this I will have reached the end of retirement, and probably by a good bit. But I wanted to spend some time with you today recalling and recollecting.
You are my only grandchild, and because of that I have done everything in my power to help spoil you, and I don’t care who knows. Your grand mom and I have showered you with gifts and treats. But don’t let your mom kid you, we did the same thing to your mother as she grew up. She was just as much a princess at 9 as you are at 9. But the similarities don’t end there. Your mom as a blond until she was 10 or 11, she enjoyed reading, she was tall for her age group, sports were something she did cause she was told she had to participate (much like you are told) she was good in school, but had to be pushed at some subjects just like you, she had a great enjoyment for music, and you seem to have inherited that as well, and heck even a tiny bit of me has rubbed off because you seem to like the “blues” when we are alone in the car listening to the radio. Your mom and I also shared some tastes in music for years, but hers likes changed as she grew, while mine stayed rooted. She, like you she was a beautiful little girl. And Cari at 9 you indeed a beautiful little lady, dressed up or dressed down, your beauty can’t be taken from you.
I have found you to be much more respectful of my illness than I anticipated. You have grown up seeing me ill, using oxygen, and being limited in how far I could go with my oxygen line. You have grown up seeing the cannula in my nose and this wasn’t a reason for not giving me a kiss on the cheek. You acceptance of my health issues will be of significance to you as you age. The kindness and consideration you automatically displayed to me will be of great comfort to many folks during your lifetime. Never stop caring for others Cari.
Since our earliest times we have played well together for the most part. “Sit on me Grandpa” has always been one of my favorites. Smiling we have played WII bowling numerous times and you have consistently kicked my butt, LOL I think you cheat at “go fish,” but I can’t prove it and you always win. And the 1st time you did the “I Got Yahtzee” dance about made me pee my pants. It was the cutest thing I had ever seen, but I did grow tired of it by the 3rd time that game. LOL LOL. Because your mom was also playing and getting her butt kicked also, she didn’t have a good time, and we both teased her. You’re like me, my family, and your mom, you don’t seem to like to lose, and can be quite gleeful when you win. Heck you might even rub it in a bit more than necessary. But I can handle it, just be aware your mom is extremely competitive and will enjoy beating you a card and board games. Then there is the XBOX360, and your love of the racing games, that just tickles me to death. Nobody wanted to play my racing games until you showed up, and I love the racing games. We have sat in my office for hours play Sega Racing, and now we are moving on to the more sophisticated racing games that use lifelike cars, on genuine racetracks from around the world. I really enjoyed that. Smiling, we have had a ton of fun together. We spent hours laying together in my and grand mom’s bed watching movie after move, or in the office, watching the Disney Channel until I thought my head was going to explode. I remember the countless times you sat patiently waiting for me to finish up something on the computer before we began play. I don’t ever remember you interrupting me to ask if I was finished, you always showed every bit of your patience. Cari I have added a picture of us playing Wii when you were 7.
Do you realize that it is because of you that your grand mom and I bought this home? It had to have a swimming pool, a place for our grand baby to play, to laugh, scream, jump, giggle, and have water fights, dunking, splash battles and learning to swim. We knew you were coming long before you got here. And we made sure that our home would be a place you always felt welcome, and knew you could always rest your head.
Cari there is so much I haven’t even addressed, for instance your performances at dance recitals, or taking part in the Christmas pageant or your performances at school choir events. We haven’t talked about going to the movies, or when I took you and your Mom and Dad up to Kentucky to introduce you to your great-grandmother, and your great uncles and aunt. Or how you are growing up in a digital world and adapting so well. I have a ton more to say, probably a lot you probably don’t even remember. But I will share my memories with you so you can have mine. This will be part of my gift to you.
Folks, as you know when I am not writing about my fight with COPD I write stories for my granddaughter. It is my way of being here for her at the end of my retirement. 95 percent of the stories to date have been about me, my family, my adventures, my life, my daughter, and on and on, which will be great for Cari to learn about me, and I will continue to write those stories. But I have decided, to write specific letters to Cari, where I will reflect on events that happened between Cari and I.
As always if you have any questions, concerns or issues please feel free to contact me. Take care and have a good day. Bill