Me with my Grandaddy Cribbs around a year old.
Some days, even at 43, I feel old. I think I’ve always had an old soul. My hair seems to think so anyway. (Grey began at 22 so I just embraced it.) He was 68 when I was born. So when I think of old I think of my grandaddy Cribbs.
William Isom Cribbs. My great grandfather. When I think of old I think of him and my uncle Pink. (Yes, his name was Pink. Pink Edward otherwise known as Pinky. But his story is one for another day.) Granny always called him Isom. I can still hear her sweet gentle voice say his name.
I don’t feel old because of my grey hair. I sometimes feel old because I’m highly sensitive and when I get frustrated with situations that irritate me and I think of grandaddy. I can be a curmudgeon in these situations.
I think grandaddy Cribbs was highly sensitive. And maybe introverted. He and granny had 9 kids. Maybe this is why he walked 2 or 3 times a day, usually for an hour each time. But I have no idea if he walked that often as his kids were growing up.
We only got to see them once or twice a year. They lived in Florida. It was a ten hour drive. And they never had air conditioning. He loved to fish. When we would visit all the family would come over for a fish fry. I remember his younger brother helping make the hush puppies and fry the fish.
He would take us to Lithia Springs not far from where he lived. It was a natural spring park with a swimming area. About all I can remember about Lithia Springs was it was always cold even in the middle of July.
I remember his flowers and orange tree.
He took a nap every afternoon. He did wake up very early so it could be he needed that recharge or he needed the quiet time. He was retired by the time I was born so I’m sure he didn’t take a daily nap when he was younger and raising his family.
But as I said when I think of old I think of grandaddy. He died at the age of 91 when I was 23. And when I have moments where my highly sensitive nature makes me want to jump out of my skin I realize how much like him I am.
I’ve been told he came down with shingles when my mother was a little girl sometime in the late fifties or early sixties. The virus seemed to cause nerve damage. He never wanted the television on except to watch the news and baseball. He didn’t like a lot of noise.
Maybe his sensitivty came from the nerve damage. Or maybe his nature from birth was introverted and sensitive to begin with. Whatever the reason I am definitely his grandchild. At least twice a week something will be “getting on my nerves” and I instantly think of him.
This is not a bad thing at all.
I think everyone could learn a few things from him, especially me:
- Go for a walk outside every day. Twice if you can. I need to do this. It really does do wonders for your mind and emotions.
- Take a power nap every day. Think we can get every employer on board with this one?
- Leave the television off. (Preaching to myself here. Mine is almost always off during the day but I veg out every night to the tv.)
- Get your hands dirty doing something outside. Whether it be gardening or fishing doing something outside is good for the soul.
I’m just not sure I can ever get on board with going for a cold swim though.