Sweat and Tears

Other than a few walls of privacy, Grants Place has a feeling of openness all around just like he would have liked it.  Grant was a cuddler his whole life; he liked everyone to be in the same room and he never wanted to watch a movie alone.  Being the baby of our family, he was blessed with not only three big sisters that adored him, but three protectors. Grant had the kindest things to say about his big sisters. There is a bond that only maybe another big sister could understand; a sister very much like Steve’s I’ll say “older” : ) sister, Sandra. We all have our protector in different ways. She has held Steve up in spirit and prayer, she has tirelessly laid on a roof below his feet, she has documented with her photographs every tiny step of this journey, she is a lady of kindness and grace. She’s not just his big sister, but a protector in this life.

As the progress of Grant’s Place gets closer to looking finished from the outside, I have been thinking a lot about how this relates to how I have been feeling lately in our journey. There is a message in every step of the progress to Grant’s Place. I may look as though things are holding strong on the outside, but there is so much work to do on the inside. Like Grant’s house, I yet to still complete the inside. And even when things look and appear complete and fulfilled; there will always need maintaining, cleaning, and sometimes the ‘ol water pipe might burst and I will find myself in tears on the kitchen floor.  As I look back over the past summer months and I not only see progress but love, kindness, and gratefulness.  I have learned a lot about friendship, family and even the kindness of strangers. There is a healing watching Grant’s house being built and it not just standing back and looking at it.  The real healing has come from family and friends that have worked so hard by Steve’s side.  Supporting him whether it be climbing the highest peak or an 80 years old holding the ladder that held him from falling as he was so determined to finish the last corner fascia. I Look back over the summer months and I think of the tears that have streamed down my face and how that release emotions. I think about Steve and the endless days of this hot summer working so hard on Grant’s Place; the endless hours of sweat rolling down his face realizing how this in a way is his part of his grieving. The sweat running profusely down his face at times were his tears. That in his own masculine way he was allowed to grieve in this way because I am sure some days the sweat rolling down his face disguised the real tears; For Steve to have had the love and support of the 3 guys that have never left his side wiping the sweat and tears from their faces was in some sort of way grieving with him.

This project is about love and giving. It’s about allowing us all to grieve in our own way, our own time. It’s about embracing each step in our journey. It’s about the long walk not the short cut. It’s about walking through the valley. It’s about knowing one or three others will hold our head above the water when we feel like we’re drowning in a river of unknown currents. It emphasises that together we will get to the point in our journey that we know who was there to hold our hand, pick us up, and brushed us off. This is not a journey our family has taken alone. This journey is about the people who were with us when we felt nothing other than emptiness around us.

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