Spent a couple of hours with my grandfather-in-law Bill this afternoon. My kids are at my mother-in-laws and my wife was in bed resting. His son and grandson had recently left town after what was probably their "last trip" down at Bill's request. They had taken him to his birthplace of Parkerville, Kansas - an event Bill had been working diligently with the physical therapist to undertake. It was a success, had brought back many memories, and now he was ready for it all to be over - something he has said many times before.
Afterward I called his daughter-in-law. She asked if I was okay. I replied that I was, but on the short drive home realized I had knowingly befriended a man who would eventually die. I had to let that sink in a little bit.
When his wife passed away last year I was in a good position to be the support I needed to be for my wife because I was not emotionally involved with her - we'd taken the kids to spend time with them over the years and they visited us in Texas once, but I wasn't connected with them at that level. That has seemingly changed this last year given the amount of time I have spent with Bill since.
In the midst of everything else going on in my life right now, I realized today that I will miss him when he is gone.