Love Me or Hate Me – Part 6

My name is Josh Morrow and this is my story. As life continues, I find myself reflecting on the past. I’ve spoken about my Grandpa in Part 4 and how much I looked up to him as a child and now as a father. My grandpa and grandma raised 3 children on the family farm who have all become successful. I can only hope that I am as fortunate as my grandfather was to watch his children work toward and excel in their careers. For me, I could not have asked for better role models growing up. My Grandpa turned 90 years old this March and we were unable to celebrate as a family. I am sure you all have similar experiences where the Covid outbreak had significant impacts on loved ones where it forced people into isolation and distress. Driving down their driveway, parking outside, rolling down the window and letting my little guy wave from his car seat while we blew kisses is not something we were used to. Who would have thought that this social distancing would feel so terrible? I would have given an arm and a leg to sit down, have our glass of wine, a small dinner and filling each other in on all the latest adventures. It was a stark reminder of how older people really suffer during these types of things. We are not creatures of isolation and I hope after this is all over, we really appreciate and notice how important togetherness really is. The younger generation has a grip and a skill set to navigate through the social media world and technology keeps them somewhat satisfied. I couldn’t help but wonder about all the other seniors out there struggling at a much higher level then most. My grandpa is a little hard of hearing because of the years he spent working in a sawmill. Today, the consequences of that make it incredibly hard to talk on the phone which further adds to the frustration. I guess the one good thing about our phones now is the ability to FaceTime which has been a blessing during this pandemic. FaceTime was never my thing, but I changed my tune in a hurry. I’ve never been fond of writing. I was horrible at it and I think my English teacher gave me the 51 percent I needed to make sure she wouldn’t have to see me again. Truth is, I wish I would have applied myself a lot more through high school. Reality is, you need to write letters and as you know, English is a big part of that. I was about 18 when I decided to make sure that if my grandpa were to unexpectedly pass that he would know exactly how I felt about him. Something I would never want him to question or not know for certain. It did not matter whether it was celebrating achievements or supporting me when I was down, that man made the ultimate effort to be the very best grandpa he could be. When I was finished, I presented it to him, we both shed a few tears, he walked over to his safe and placed it inside. It would take hundreds of pages to crack the surface of our time together and all the amazing things he has done for me over the years. The endless miles my grandparents put on their camper following me around the country while I was playing hockey, the camp outs we used to have when I was working in remote wilderness areas and driving to my farm to have a small fire and talk about life while I was still living like a cowboy. I could never afford to purchase the advice he passed down to me or the life lessons he provided. A man that grew up with no vehicles, no technology and every day was focused on raising crops, clearing land and tending to the animals has nothing but my utmost respect. Sometimes I think how hard I work but compared to the older generation it is peanuts. He tried hard to keep me away from the farm life because he knew it was difficult and there were better opportunities out there. Any parent or grandparent wants the best for their kids. Strangely enough, it never worked on me. I still have a passion and a deep love for agriculture. Im convinced it must be genetic. As a child I can still remember the fear of misbehaving because my punishment was not being able to go to the farm and spend time with my grandpa. Some kids worried about toys, cartoons or candies. Not me. My happiness and joy was being on the farm. The only word that comes to mind when I think about people growing up in that older generation is “incredible”. How else can you describe your grandparent’s? I wish everyone could grow up with a person like that in their lives. Unfortunately, that’s not the case for all. I am reminded daily of how blessed I am and continue to be. Not only was he my best friend, he was someone who led by example and he probably had no idea how his every move molded and shaped me in one way or another. I’d like to leave you with a thought. Just as the young need the old. It’s time that we all realize that the old really do need the young right now. Love me or hate me you’ll want to read part 7 in next Thursday’s paper.