I’ll not soon forget the last few months of my dad’s life, that is a fact. But as much as possible I try to remember how he and I interacted. Little things.
One thing I remember is a day he wasn’t feeling well. Might have been shortly after a hospital stay or a day or two after chemo which mostly made him tired. I have the amazing good fortune that my company (Blackbaud…still work for them, pray I will someday retire after thirty five or so years of employment) lets me work remotely and so that day I brought my work laptop into his bedroom and sat on the bed beside him working on a class. He watched TV most of the day and slept some.
At some point, I think during the Ellen show, I put my laptop down for a bit, held his hand and put my head on his shoulder. I told him he was the best dad in the world and he squeezed my hand and probably said thank you or whatever. I don’t remember his words, but I remember his hand in my hand. It reminded me of being a kid and holding his hand. How safe do you feel when your daddy is holding your hand when you’re young? He always treated me like a princess…I was, for sure, Daddy’s little girl. But at that moment, I really felt like there were only two people in the world. Dad and me.
Those are the moments I miss. Those are the feelings I wish I could have again. He is here in my heart, but…well, for those of you who haven’t lost a loved parent (I know, some of you are not close with your parents)….you may agree with me that there are just some times that “holding him in my heart” is not enough.
Maybe some people don’t know that in his last month(s), he regretted moving to the Carolinas. He said to me on more than one occasion that he should never have moved down here. Now, admittedly, he probably wasn’t really feeling that way but he often wished he had stayed in the Boston area. I would try to instill reason in him: if he stayed in Boston, I would never have moved to South Carolina, and I would never have gotten the job at Blackbaud, started the greyhound group, bought my first house, moved in with them to help care for him and mom….none of that would have happened. It turned out that if I placed all that information in front of him, well…he didn’t have any choice but to understand and agree he had done the right thing.
Just some random thoughts and memories. There will be more.