Paul Miller is a big strong man who lost a leg in World War II. He is a war veteran, but is jolly and has a soft spot for his grandchildren. Paul Miller is my dad and he is currently living in a long- term care home, where my kids and I visit him every other Sunday. He is not quite as big as I remember him—he’s a bit more feeble and he feels lonely a lot. But as soon as he hears Molly, 8, and Charlie, 10, come running down the hall, a big grin spreads across his lined face.
The kids don’t mind that gramps is old and wrinkled, they just know that when they laugh, so does he. I think it’s the sound of their laughter that keeps him going—keeps him playing cards with his friends in the home and sharing war stories in the lounge. It makes me remember he’s still a big strong man inside.