“forget not who you are!”

…my adoptive grandfather Bennett Frost once said.

We were in his home in sunny Santa Fe and I was talking to him about past loves and all the heartaches.
He just turned 89 and still talked about Mimi (his life-long loved who died years before of breast cancer) as if she was still there with him like the very first night he met her and decided to marry her.

Wow, was I ever to find a man I could love so much and so unconditionally? It wasn’t something Ben was concerned about and therefore I should not have been either.What concerned him mostly was to teach me and “sugar foot,” his grand-daughter and Lizzie Frost that whatever the encounters and the men in our lives we had to always remembered who and where we came from.

In the years to come I often spent time with my best Lizzie at grandpa Ben’s home and our conversations on love grew deeper. Ben was not just a grandfather, he was our friend and a wonderful listener.
Ben, taught me how to build my very first coat hanger entirely made of wood from scratch. Thanks to him I now have a rather American nickname: Ginger to be exact, because, according to him I was spicy yet sweet.
Ben came to my graduation and met my parents and friends. Ben smiled at me and told me I was “impertinent, but cute.”

Ben died in 2008, but his words are never to leave my mind.

Especially today going through old pictures of forgotten times in Colorado. My college days and my triathlon friends…I live in hectic New York City and I sometimes forget who I am despite Ben’s words, but then, in a moment of pathos and joy, I pick up old dusty letters and stills and it all comes back:

I am me and I have all I once desired, can I please stop whining now…then a ray of sun comes through the window shades.

Thanks, BEN 🙂

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