“You know, if you hit the gas we’ll make it home in time for me to see my Great-Great-Great-Grandkids be born,” he said to me with a smirk as I slowed his truck – the truck he’d sell me for a dollar the day I got my driver’s license – to a crawling 25 mph down a hill that barely merits the label. I was just learning to drive, and my Grandpa had taken it upon himself to teach me. I was a fast learner, but I wasn’t fast enough for the bar I had set for myself.
I had grown up with a deep fear of disappointing those who had expectations of me, scared of being a burden, and I was a perfectionist to the point of being terrified of failure. Somehow my Grandpa knew all of this about me, and with one quick-witted remark at a time he shattered the walls of perfection and created a world where the freedom to be human was like a net beneath a tightrope. “Sorry, I’m just a little scared going down hills,” I replied. “It’s alright,” he laughed, “the Great-Great-Great-Grandkids can wait.” Continue reading “Let me tell you about Harold Gray…”