Today, we drove down to see my grandpa. Bumpa, as I call him, helped raise me. I lived with him and my gram for a time while I was growing up, and he's definitely more of a "dad" than a "grandpa." He's in his eighties now, but still very independent and "with it," as the kids like to say. Bumpa has also been blind in his right eye ever since a firecracker accident when he was a kid, but he has always functioned just fine.Except he had previously been diagnosed with both glaucoma and macular degeneration. Not great when you rely on only one eye. And last week, he woke up one day to find that he couldn't really see anything that was further away than about two feet.
So suddenly, the family patriarch who still helps some of us with our taxes, needs a magnifying glass to see his checkbook. The man who taught me how to drive and still ferried his sister around to her doctors appointments and shopping trips, can't drive his car anymore.
As has always been his tradmark style (indicative of many of the Great Depression/World War II generation), he is accepting of this new hand that's been dealt to him and loathe to complain or feel sorry for himself. We combined our visit today with a shopping trip, which was a nice way to spend time together. And as usual, even though he has tried to love it out of me and show me the way all these years, I have enough bitterness and angst for both of us.