Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Goodbye Grandpa :(

Today was my paternal grandfather's funeral. He passed away 2 Friday's ago on September 5th. I wasn't extremely close to him because we moved away from our family to America when I was 5. Still, I saw him every summer when we visited Taiwan and he even stayed with us in the US twice for half a year each time. The last time I saw him was my second day in Taiwan this summer.. he was already sickly because he went anorexic-- 5'9 and 83 pounds. He just lost the desire to eat anything. After that, he got an ulcer, and went braindead because he lost too much blood and his weak body could not support him. He was unconscious for about a week when his wife (my grandma) and children (including my dad) decided that they would pull the plugs because there was no point surviving solely on the device if he was unconscious (the doctors said there was no hope for revival). So the decision was made and he passed away.

The funeral was a traditional Taiwanese-Buddhist ritual. It was awkward for me, my mom, and my sister because we are baptized Christians, so we don't participate in their incense-bowing/ritualistic hymns and prayers, etc. Yet at the same time, we don't want to show disrespect. We just ended up bowing when appropriate but not doing the more intense traditions.

I feel so confused over all of this. Suddenly, life seems like such a whimsical ordeal. I mean, seriously, what the hell is LIFE? What defines life? What is that little spark that distinguishes a dead body from a living one? It's just reallyyyy weird for me. And yes, this is the first personal death I've ever dealt with (the only ones being my dog and some distant people I knew). It's such a strange concept.. and I hate going to sleep alone because all I do sometimes is stay awake and ponder the meaning of life. That's when I run into my boyfriend's room and snuggle with him for a while until I feel really tired. (We're staying with my parents.. so we don't wanna get caught).

Anyways, putting aside my confusions, I'm really gonna miss my grandpa. He was always the chill one who was kind of reserved yet fun at the same time. I will always remember that the last thing he ever laughed about was my blonde hair color because he thought it was silly/funny. I really hope he's in a better place. Part of me really believes that wherever he is right now, he's much happier because towards the end of his life, I feel like he lost the will to live. Maybe I'm wrong, but when you give up food, friends, and everything else in your life, it just seems like you no longer care for life anymore. I just wish him the best of luck wherever he may be now. I think I might get a tattoo with the money he left me. It's not a lot -- just enough for a tattoo, but I'm still trying to decide if that's a "memorable" thing to do with the money. We'll see what happens.