Monday, September 9, 2013

Final Ontario Post {Finally}

**Just kidding, this is actually part one of two.  I really planned to fit it all in then I started looking at photos from the root of our visit and just couldn't.**

I've been going to Toronto to visit family all my life.
It's because of this that I often forget to do some sightseeing.
I remember as a child going to the CN tower, Bluejays' games {in their unbeatable days}, Canada's Wonderland and the Toronto Zoo.
Now, as an adult, I would much rather spend the time with our family.
I am looking forward to someday introducing our kids to these attractions.
This, however, was not that trip.

We arrived to some typical Toronto weather.
 Hot and humid.
Memories of sitting perfectly still in my Grandma West's apartment whilst aiming 3 fans in my direction came flooding back.
The memories kept coming as we drove through my Gram and Grandad's old neighbourhood and up to their church.
We walked in to a warm reception by extended family and old friends.
Many sought us out to see the "great-grands" since our kids are the only ones to date.
The church was beautiful and a simple picture of Grandad sat at the front.
Nothing more was needed since his memory, though already strong in all of us, was brought to life by the many respects paid.
Gram said afterwards that she thought it was the most beautiful service she had been to.
I agreed.
The readings and eulogies by my family members blew me away.
With each one I felt like Grandad, as I remember him, was brought back to me.
We had spent so many years seeing parts of this phenomenal man robbed.
Then in this one gathering they all came back.
I contributed by reading my post from July 2nd.
I was so glad that I wrote it when I did since it proved to be the purest form of what I felt after his passing.
My truly amazing cousin Sarah sang "Lark" unaccompanied.
She filled the room with her voice and kept the beat with a hand over her heart.
I was truly beautiful.
{Here's Josh Ritter singing it, skip to 25 seconds if you don't want to hear the banter.}
My Mom and Aunts put together an impressive table of memorabilia.
{And you know how I love my memorabilia.}

How did the kids do you ask?
They did great...for 10 minutes.
They spent the rest of the service chasing Daddy in the lobby.
Honestly, I'm glad that they are still naive to the idea of losing a loved one.
Fiona has started to show an interest in death but doesn't yet understand what it means.
I will often  hear stories in which "someone tried to died me Mommy".
She did once tear up when we explained that you don't come back after you die.
That conversation ended shortly thereafter and I certainly won't prompt it's rehashing.
I don't think I'm one to shelter my kids but some harsh truths can wait.
Grandad had a very calculating mind and I'm certain that facts were important to him.
Above all though he enjoyed his time with the people, and especially the children, in his life.
One of his last pieces of advice to my Mom was to "enjoy those kids".
There's plenty of time before they need to face sorrow head on.
For now I'm enjoying them and their innocence.

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