Monday, August 22, 2011

Overwhelmingly Sad

After my folks divorced when I was around 13, I never lived with my dad again, except for a few months in 1985 while I was saving money to move to Nashville.  Spending two to four days a week in his home now while I am helping to take care of him is so nourishing to the little girl that lives inside me.  Even though he is weak and frail and so very sick, I am comforted each night I lay my head on the pillow that he is just down the hall.  There is a photo of my late sister and I in the room that I stay in.  I remember going to have that photo taken years ago at Grant's department store.  I was probably 9 or so and Karen was around 4 or 5.  At that time in our lives, we were daddy's little girls.  While my heart is breaking a bit each day as we get closer to the day it shatters completely when he dies, this time in his home is so important to me. 

Being here is so difficult and extremely emotional for me, but I don't want to be anywhere else.  Today was tough.  He is growing increasingly weaker and is to a point where he can barely stand up for more than a minute or two before he collapses in exhaustion.  He sleeps almost constantly, although today he was alert more than he has been.  We chatted some today about his boyhood friends, his college graduation in 1953 and trips to Louisville to visit friends of our family.  I enjoyed that.  Some days he barely talks at all.  I cannot imagine all the things that are running through his head.  When he was in the hospital, the pastor from the church that he attended for awhile came to see him very often.  As of today, he hasn't called or visited him at home at all.  Daddy said he thought maybe he had offended him or something.  While it really isn't my business, I emailed brother Steve today and asked him to call dad.  He did and even came to visit tonight.  It cheered my dad greatly.  I was glad I meddled.  Steve apologized to me, said he had been super busy the last few weeks and appreciated the kick in the pants not to neglect daddy. 

I know I am rambling tonight.  Being here is so bittersweet.  I love the time with my dad, but seeing him suffer and deteriorate is so hard.   I've had to run to the back of the house a lot today to cry for a few minutes before putting my brave face back on.  I know dad feels bad enough without me spending the day in tears in front of him.  The sadness is so heavy that I feel it is pushing me down.  I know I have the choice to not spend as much time here, but I am not going to let the emotional toll rob me from spending time with my dad.  I will bear the weight of being overwhelmingly sad to have every minute that I can. 

1 comment:

  1. My thoughts are with You and your Dad.
    I love this picture of You and Karen.
    I'm sorry you are going through this.