I've never known my mother's father. He died in a farming accident when she was a teenager. So I never had a grandfather on her side of the family. I never really felt I was missing out though. I had my Paw-Paw on my dad's side of the family (at least until I lost him when I was in high school).
In addition, my mother's family is huge. She is the second youngest sibling and when we were little, we lived near her oldest sister, and because of many circumstances, she and her husband became much like grandparents to me.
So... Uncle Ken is the closest thing to a grandfather on my mom's side of the family. Have I ever told him this? I have no idea. Sometimes it's important to tell people these things, and sometimes it's important to just know it.
Anyway, I could ramble on for a while just tripping down memory lane, but the point is this: Uncle Ken is sick. He's been in the hospital for a couple weeks now. They've gone back and forth about what's wrong with him and it seems they're not entirely sure. He was doing better, then worse, then better... and now he's taken a turn for the worse.
I don't know what's happening... but I know this: I love him and it hurts.