My entire extended family lives in Ohio. I was born and lived there for a hot second until my parents moved us to Texas to support my father’s career. In my growing-up years, I spent a lot of time in the suburbs of Cleveland (Go Browns! 🧡🏈) visiting my grandparents and aunts and uncles.
My grandparents often took walks around the neighborhood after dinner. My grandfather would push his chair back from the table, slowly stand up, rub his protruding belly with both hands and say, “Come on, Prissy (his nickname for my grandmother). Let’s take a walk and blow the stink off.”
Always the class act, my grandpa.
They’d shuffle out the door and walk a few blocks this way and that, meandering their way home while I biked in circles on a red flea market Radio Flyer they kept in the garage for me to use on my visits.
Lately, I find myself taking lots of walks around my neighborhood to “blow the stink off.” We are living through troubled times. The world feels heavy, hard, and over-burdened.
But as I walk, I’m often reminded of my grandpa and his words of...wisdom feels too strong a word here. Unconventionally wise, my grandpa, his words of truth have stuck with me all these years and are helping me navigate a difficult season of life.
My strolls are much more for my mental health than my physical health, and when I remember my grandpa’s uncouth phrase, I smile. Sometimes, you just need to get outside, breathe deeply, and hope the change of scenery leads to a change in attitude.
Thanks for teaching me that, Grandpa.
|Grandma & Grandpa Jaryga and baby Mallory|