“How does one greet death – like an old friend, or a foe?”

How does one greet death – like an old friend, or a foe?

My 90-something strong paternal grandpa passed away 42 minutes after midnight last night, while I was thrashing in slumber trying to fight off seasickness from living in a work barge offshore where I am now and have been for two days. Grandpa was an inspiration  – a true phoenix is how I best remember him by – who in the end, lost to only one: God.

How does one greet death – like an old friend, or a foe?

“And so the hero goes, Jane,” Dad texted me to share the news.

“I hope he did not suffer while on his way,” I texted in response.

Over the last few months, Dad went back-and-forth between the city and his hometown, almost every weekend without fail. Grandpa, though never senile and weak, finally succumbed to old-age: his body gave way and soon, like they did a week ago, shut down. “He’s at an age where it’s too risky to do anything more to him,” the doctor had apparently told Dad.

Death is imminent, was left unspoken.

How does one greet death – like an old friend, or a foe?

I could not make it to his deathbed; I could not make it to his funeral; I won’t be back there until a month from now…

Will this guilt swallow me whole? Will I live henceforth remembering this one thing I did not do for him?

How does one greet death – like an old friend, or a foe?

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