Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Walks with Grandpa

Blog post by Lacey M.

My grandpa loved to walk in the woods near his home. From a very early age I can remember going along. He would firmly grasp my hand in his as we walked alone well beaten paths on his property. He usually did most of the talking. He would rattle on and on about the events of the day. Most of which I didn't understand anything about. Therefore, I spent a lot of the time just listening to the sounds of the world around us. I would hear the creek gently flowing nearby, the wind whispering through the trees, and every once in a while I would hear an animal scampering about in the trees. I quickly realized that grandpa could not hear the things that I did. Every time I would stop to listen or ask him if he heard, he wouldn't know what I was talking about.

When I grew to be a man, I still enjoyed walking with my grandpa. On my twenty fifth birthday I bought him a gift that I was sure would change his life. I scheduled him for a free hearing test and told him that if he needed them that I would buy him nearly invisible hearing aids. At first he acted resistant to wear it, but I explained to him that i wanted for him to hear all of the sounds on our walks that he had been missing out on. He reluctantly agreed and we went on our first walk together. This is the first walk with him that I could ever remember that he didn't say a word. At first I thought that he was angry with me for the gift that I had bought him. It wasn't until we reached my favorite place that I realized why he was so very quiet. We stood there in the midst of the beautiful pine trees with a gentle stream flowing nearby. There were squirrels jumping in the limbs all around us. He looked at me and the he looked all around at the things that he was hearing for the first time in many years. There were the biggest tears I had ever seen welling up in his eyes. He smiled and I knew that he was happy with the gift that I had gave him.

We still walk in the woods just like we have always done. My grandpa is just like a child rediscovering all of those things that I had been hearing for so many years before.

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