I looked at Grandpa sitting silently across the small table from me. “Do you want some more eggs?” I asked him.
“No. I’m fine.”
I considered him for a few moments. Grandpa’s eyes were hidden under his large, bushy, gray eyebrows. His wiry gray hair stuck out here and there; it was time for another haircut. His old brown sweater consumed him. Grandpa looked at me and smiled faintly, but I could tell this was one of his more difficult days. Grandpa was still adjusting to the changes the past year had brought him: a physical decline which necessitated the use of a wheelchair and kept him from going out of the house as often as he liked. Driving had been especially hard for him to give up. I understood completely. I treasured my independence as much as Grandpa valued his, and the thought of losing so much of it horrified me. While Grandpa and I were thankful that he had not declined much mentally, it sometimes seemed like a cruel joke of fate. He knew exactly how much he was missing out on, and on his bad days this knowledge seemed to mock him just as his thick head of hair did in the mirror, sitting atop that thin, wasted body.
Grandpa caught me staring and jerked into action, picking up his plate and rolling himself to the sink. After putting his plate in the sink he went into the living room and switched on the television. I Love Lucy was on; his favorite. As Grandpa lost himself in Lucy’s comic genius, I continued to watch him and wonder. Was this really the best situation for him? Would he be better off in a place with more people and activities to interact with? He fights adamantly against the idea of moving out of his home, the home he shared with Grandma for 37 years and in which she passed away. I’m sure he wants to die here, too. But what if he was already dead?