Snarkling Clean

Snarkling Clean- because you don't have to cuss to make fun of stuff. Two dedicated readers discuss romance novels- from what made us weep with joy to what made us want to poke pencils through our eyeballs.

Monday, August 06, 2007

Alright, Kinda

Losing a parent is a weird thing. It can't be described adequately by someone who has gone through it to someone who hasn't...there just aren't the words.

My dad had been sick for a very long time. He had emphysema, and then was diagnosed with Stage Four Lung Cancer that had metastisized (sp?) to his liver. To top it off, he came down with pneumonia. And all the while, he continued to smoke.

But even with all this going on, we still never expected the end to be as quick as it was. Go into the hospital on Friday, go into eternal reward on Wednesday morning.

My parents celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary on July 5th. We planned their party for July 28th, since it didn't fall around any holidays and more people were likely to be able to make it. My dad went into the hospital on July 27th. He was unable to make the party. My mom did go, since she didn't want to disappoint anyone who'd already made their way to Central Oregon for the shindig. She was such a trooper...all decked out in her new flirty, flouncy dress she bought to surprise my dad, hair and makeup all done..She laughed and joked and had a good time with everyone, all the while worried about her man who lay intubated and sedated in a hospital 30 miles away.

We were told on Monday morning by my dad's oncologist (who had no idea my dad had been admitted over the weekend) that my dad never should have been placed on a ventilator. He should have just been given what comfort there could be and passed on...that we were only prolonging the inevitable...that he wasn't making it out of this one...that he was never coming home again.

Now, I ask you. How do you comfort a woman who has been married for fifty years to this man, who has never known anything else, who grew up with him, bore his children, followed him from pillar to post around the world, when she gets this kind of news?

I realize this entry is very choppy and badly written, but I need to get this out, get it posted, and be done. I told Robyn yesterday on the phone that I am sick of this story. I am sick of the sound of my own voice. I am sick of all the details. I have had to call so many people, and deal with the visitors and family, and coordinate the food, and soothe the egos involved, and do so many things, that I am sick of this..this...this busy-ness of death.

I just want to sit for awhile. Sit in a quiet room and cry a little and rage a little and throw a few things.

I miss my dad. I love my dad. I am mad at my dad. Not mad that he died...but mad at how he chose to go.

I am a big freedom person. You can be free to do whatever you want to do. But be aware that you don't live in a vacuum. Your choices will either help or hurt someone. Every time my dad chose to smoke, he set this end up for himself and for us. Every time he lit up, he decided how his final days would be spent. Every time he bought a pack of cigarettes, he set this appointment up for his children and wife to be standing beside his bed in a sterile cold CCU ward after midnight listening to the fading sounds of his breathing.

So while I mourn, I quietly rage. I mourn that my dad will never get to see my daughter develop from the outrageously adorable toddler she is now into the wonderful young woman she will be. He won't get to see my son as he transitions from goofy pre-teen to tall handsome high schooler. And he won't be here to help my husband and I celebrate our 20th, or 25th, or 30th wedding anniversaries. He won't be here to commiserate on the hazards of raising teenagers or complain about the government. He won't be here for me to tell about the latest political thriller I read, and get his take on it after he read it.

I won't smell his smell anymore. Mennen aftershave mixed with the Johnson's Baby Oil he used on his hair to keep it soft and shiny. (no lie. it totally worked, too. I tried it once and looked like I combed my hair with a porkchop.) And I won't get to see him come into whatever room my mom's in, go up behind her, and give her a hug and a kiss on the neck. Or a pat on the butt. Or hear a "Hey, baby, you got any coffee?"

I miss my dad. I want him back. For me. For my kids. For my heartbroken brothers. For my mamma.

I wish I could ask him if all his choices were worth it.


Anonymous Michelle said...

Hugs to you, Missie. Go and hug your kids and grieve. Sending prayers your way.

4:10 AM  
Blogger Bernita said...

I don;t know which is worse - watching someone deteriorate or having them go suddenly without warning.

6:01 AM  
Blogger Myanderings said...

Anger is good. Anger is healthy. That is the best advice I got after my husband's sudden death years and years ago. Be mad - it'll get you through to where you're strong enough to be sad. My prayers are with you.

7:50 AM  
Anonymous Kaitlin said...

Ah, honey, here's a big, fat cyber hug for you. We went thru something similar last year when my grandfather passed away. He'd had a stroke about 8 months before and seemed to be doing okay, but went downhill so fast we were left with our heads spinning trying to figure out what happened.

I know my mom still gets hit every now & then with the grief, which is only natural. Just remember, there are a lot of us out here praying for you & your family. Whenever you need to, take a deep breath and soldier on. Being strong is always hard.

3:11 PM  
Blogger Katie said...

Hey Missie. I just want you to know that I love you and am praying for you. Your blog has really touched me. I can't imagine what it feels like to lose a parent. You are right - it is not fair - at this stage in our lives, we should not be burying our dad and comforting our mom. Please know that I am thinking about you and wishing I could give you a big hug right now and say, "I'm sorry". I love ya, Katie

4:12 PM  

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