I was fresh out of college, still single, and had just opened Small Cloud Christian School when I announced my plans to adopt. Dad was none to thrilled with my decision. He wanted me to get a bit more financially stable, marry, and settle down before starting a family. I was insistent. So was Dad. We went round and round. Finally, in frustration, I told Dad that he didn't have to accept my children, but would he please just let them call him, "Grandpa." He nodded. "I just don't want to see you get hurt." Suddenly, I realized the truth. He wasn't trying to crush my dreams. He was trying to protect me, his daughter.
My children came and not only did Dad allow them to call him Grandpa, he was Grandpa to all of them. He made no distinction between his biological grandchildren and his adopted ones. As each child entered the family, either by birth or adoption, he loved them all the same.
Now, day by day, cancer is stealing this precious man away from us. Today, for the first time, I shared with the kids how serious Grandpa's condition is. We knelt in prayer and the tears flowed for Grandpa. Alyssa crawled into my lap and sobbed. Maya shook her head sadly, and said, "Today's just not Grandpa's day." Quinn is keeping up by email, texts, and phone calls. He hopes to fly in this weekend. There's a heaviness in all our hearts.
Dad never wanted me to adopt, but he understood the calling God put on my heart. He laid aside his own fears for me and embraced my rather unorthodox family. Oh, how I love that man!