October 9, 2013

Radio Silence

Sorry for the Radio Silence over the last two weeks, it's been pretty overwhelming here in PTRS land.

Last Monday, my sister called me to tell me that my grandfather was in the hospital and not doing well. After getting details from my mom, I decided to take an early flight out to New Jersey on Tuesday morning.

I spent the next three days in the hospital with my mom, grandmother, aunt, uncle, sister and cousin...basically my whole family.

Thursday evening, my grandfather passed away.

I'm extremely fortunate to have grown up with all of my grandparents. This made his passing that much more difficult...I've never had to do this before. The hardest part of it all was trying to hold it together and be strong for my mom and grandmother.

The week was incredibly difficult. Spending 12+ hours in the hospital for 3 days straight was exhausting...but it brought my family together in a way that we've never had to be together and I'm grateful for having been able to spend the entire week with them and not having to worry about work or anything, looking at old pictures, sharing memories, laughing together, crying together...it was a lot.

My 8th grade graduation
My grandfather was an unbelievable man. We called him Abuelito. He was born in the Dominican Republic and brought his family to the US in the 1960s. Under the Trujillo dictatorship, he was a political prisoner. He served a term as mayor of Santo Domingo (the capital city of the DR). He instilled in me my love of politics and world affairs and always said I would be the first woman to be president.

He was, as my mom describes him, old school Hollywood class. He was unbelievably distinguished and the perfect gentlemen. He dressed impeccably, even when he was just lounging around the house. He always had perfectly pressed shirts and slacks when we came over. He was a man who believed in family above all things. He adored my grandmother. While looking at pictures, I found a picture of him that he had written on the back. The picture was dated 1951 and it said, "Dearest Martha, save this as a dearest reminder of the most perfect love a heart can hold."
My grandparents in DC, circa 1971
He is the reason I love Apple Jacks and Apple Juice. He was an amazing cook, and his house was never the same once he stopped cooking. He was 89 years old. He lost a long battle with Alzheimer's and he's finally resting. Saying goodbye has been tremendously heartbreaking, but I'm incredibly fortunate to have had him for this long, and to have been with him, and with my family, holding his hand in his final moments.


  1. I know I said this before, but I'm sending you and your family lots of good thoughts <3

  2. Sorry to hear this :( He seemed like a great man who lived a full life. Prayers for your family

  3. I am so sorry for your loss. I was fortunate to know all of my grandparents as well and when my papa passed away it was rough - we were actually on our way to visit when we got the phone call. I was also lucky enough to know some of my great grandparents - my last great grandparent just passed away in August. It's hard to lose a grandparent because you learn so much from them and cherish their stories and memories that they leave behind! I'm so sorry for your families loss, but I'm thankful that you've had the opportunity to really know him!

  4. Love you, babe. I know what a hard past few years its been with his health and mental state, and, I know nothing i can say or do will make it better, but, I love you. I never got to meet him, but, if he raised your mom and she raised you, he was obviously one heck of a guy. Give mama a hug and kiss for me and know that you all are in my thoughts and prayers.

    Love you and big as the world! xoxo

  5. Sorry to hear about your grandfather.

  6. This is such a beautiful remembrance of your Abuelito, Christy. Again, I'm so sorry for your loss <3


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