**This is a work of nonfiction based on actual events that I have experienced firsthand; used with permission.
A grandfather is one of the most influential people a child can have.
The wisdom and love that your grandfather can impart to you have the power to shape you into the person you become.
It has been 2 years since he died and his lessons are still in my mind. My grandfather told me seven things that I would not be able to hear again.
Here are those seven things, as well as what they mean:
1. A soul cannot be stolen.
As you grow up, you'll know it's true when someone denies holding a piece of your heart.
No matter how they try to make you give up your love, it will never work. And don't be afraid to let that love go. Your soul will reside in your heart and stay there forever.
2. Your heart cannot be broken… if you love someone, it'll be okay in the end.
Some people will come into your life, do things that will hurt you deeply, yet you never really forget them or stop loving them. Your heart cannot be broken, not if you love the person.
3. Never expect a person to be perfect; it endangers your love for them.
If they want to prove themselves to you, they will. If they don't, then let go of them.
Never expect someone to be perfect or expect perfection from people–it's dangerous because one day, you will realize that the love you had for them was heavily based on expectations and that it wasn't true love.
4. Sometimes you have to let go of the things that can't be changed.
No person is perfect. Although you may be deeply in love with them, the fact remains that they have flaws.
Everyone does, and when those flaws get too much for you to handle, learn to accept them and let go of the things that can't be changed.
It might hurt, but you'll realize being in love with someone who isn't perfect will also hurt at some point because expectations are dangerous.
5. Some things are just not meant to be.
You will never be able to change or fix some things in life, so sometimes, it's best just to let go of them.
Your heart will tell you when it's too much to handle or when you should let go. You can mourn lost loves or friendships and reminisce about the good times but moving on is the only key to saving you from drowning in regret and sadness.
6. Always treasure the things that you have.
Even if it's a minor thing that makes you smile or laugh, never take those things for granted.
The people you love might leave you one day, and all the things in life will slip away forever, but you can always treasure the things that make your life complete.
7. The greatest love of your life will end in tragedy and agony… but it'll be worth it.
The greatest love of your life will end in tragedy and agony, and there won't be a single thing you can say to change the way it ends.
You will love them until the very last breath leaves your body, and at that moment, you will be grateful for all of those years spent with them.
My grandfather died two years ago. He didn't tell me the things I'd find most interesting is just another reminder of how much he loved me. His love for me was unconditional, and he didn't have to tell me these things, just like he didn't have to say goodbye.
So, although I will never be able to tell him what I wanted to say, I will try my best to honor him in this post.
Thanks, Grandpa – you are so loved and missed.