Sunday, January 24, 2010

Almost 3 weeks

It's strange the memories that pop up in the weeks after someone's gone and the feelings that accompany them.

I remember:

Being so pissed in AR for an "out-of-the-blue-must-turn-NOW" turn on the bikes with a semi right behind PB.

- - - I kinda feel bad about that one. Maybe Shorty wasn't thinking clearly or didn't realize how close traffic was behind us. Maybe the heat was affecting him worse than the rest of us, since there wasn't much body mass to him compared to the rest of us & we didn't have his health issue too.

The fight he & I had the 2nd to last time he was in the hospital. He was grumpy about being there and not being home. Mom talked to the dr. and told him of a conversation & decision that we (the 3 of us) had come up with. Shorty accused mom of talking behind his back & possibly not telling the dr. the 'real' truth. Mom got really upset (part from what he was saying/accusing her of & I think in part because of the stress & worry over the whole situation - you know 10 gallons of crap in a 5 gallon bucket). She started to cry & left the room. I started in on Shorty - "Do you seriously believe that mom would do such a thing to you?" "We don't like you being here anymore than you like being here." "Do you know how much mom does for you and on your behalf? And how much she tries to get you home - if its safe for you to be there?" etc.... etc.... He came back with what I expected & was ready for. "I know she does this - cause I've seen her behind me shaking her head or nodding at dr.'s appointments, giving him a different answer to the question." etc... etc....
This went on for 10 minutes or more. Finally after me just staring at him in silence he said "I think you need to leave now" I said I loved him & wished that he'd get home as soon as the dr.'s said he could.

- - - Thinking about it now I kinda smile & laugh a little. My dad kicked me out of his room. He would never do that & never did until that day. Seriously?!? Shorty kicked me out... said I needed to leave now... It's so far from reality that it's just funny.

I remember when Shorty was drinking (since has been sober for over 20 years). Cabbage Patch dolls were huge then - you remember when women were getting into fist fights over the last doll in the city - and they had just come out with Cabbage Patch Twins!! Oh those stupid commercials hooked me - I thought it would be sooo cool to have Cabbage Patch Twins. Shorty was sitting in his chair one night when I said how much I wanted those. The memory is a bit fuzzy here on if what took place was the same night or another after I made that comment. Shorty came into the house with 2 stuffed animals - a dog and a lamb - that he had gotten from some guy at the bar. These weren't the Cabbage Patch Twins I wanted - not even close. I was polite and said thanks and acted like I was happy to get them and oh look how cute.... but it wasn't ok, it wasn't the same, it was even worse than wanting a stupid doll from a tv commercial.

- - - Thinking about it now, I still feel the same. I know now that he was just doing the best he could and his alcohol fuzzy mind thought it would make me happy. I can appreciate that & love him for the fact that he was thinking of me..... but he so missed the mark.

In TN on the bikes the folks were behind me & I was 'playing' on a roller coaster road that I hadn't seen before. A too sharp turn with no warning sign and a chunk of rock later, I laid the bike down. Broken mirror, shaved & broken windshield, scratched helmet & really scratched visor, among a few other scratches & dents. Shorty comes over the hill & sees me & the bike laying on the road. Mom freaks out about me - scratches & blood mixed with gravel and I'm freaking out about my bike. Mom tends to me while Shorty tends to my bike. I'm crying & pointing to my broken bike (who true to her awesomeness starts right up again after Shorty picked her up!). Shorty starts saying "It's ok, Daddy will fix it. We're at a rally, they have everything we need at the vendors. We'll get a new windshield, and we can have the helmet touched up & buy a new visor. We'll get a new mirror or if they don't have one, they can order it to be here the next day. It's ok, Daddy will fix it." And he did. After going to the hospital & taking it easy for a day we went to the vendors. He bought me a new windshield (they had to overnight special mounting brackets), he had the paint on my helmet touched up, he bought me a new visor for my helmet. He special ordered a mirror that was there the next day. Even though I was old enough to have moved out & be on my own - he still paid for everything & told me not to worry about the cost cause he was going to get it. Daddy fixed it.

- - - God, I love him

Thursday, January 07, 2010

So now what?

I don't know what to do now. I feel like I should do something - be productive, run this weeks errands, pick up & clean the house, sort through my closets, clean out the pop cans that are rolling around the backseat of the car (& under the front seats to tell the truth), walk/jog on the treadmill, sort through the crap in the basement and put it for sale on craigslist or ebay. But part of me wants to lay around on the couch and do not a damn thing.

I don't have an answer to "Now what?".

You know how when you go on vacation to a new place or do something new, like whitewater rafting. You have no idea what to expect. You're nervous, apprehensive, and maybe even scared - because you don't know what's in store. But that's fun, exciting.

This isn't. I don't know what to expect. I don't know what to do. My dad's never died before. I'm in complete foreign territory. With, as my cousin put it, "corny crap" people always say at times like this to guide me. However, I've never wanted to be a cliche'. I didn't want to do or be or become anything like what I felt others thought I should be. My aunt always said, "You will be a great nurse." (she's a nurse). While that may have been very true her use if "You will..." kind of put me off the idea of being a nurse. I know it probably makes no sense - but why should I start now? :)

I don't know how to do this. I want to loose it; but I feel like I should be restrained - be in control. I want to punch the walls; but then I'd have to fix them or at least pay for the fix. I want to take a baseball bat to a tree (or a retaining wall works well too :); but that will break my only remaining bat (and the possible fix thing again). I want to get in my car & drive, with my ipod & a box of tissues; but gas isn't cheap & with PB not working we're trying to watch the pennies.

I feel kinda bad for PB. I know he's there for me & cares about me and how I feel but he doesn't know what to do either. Not because of him but because I haven't/can't give him a direction to act. I pull into myself not leaving much room for other things. That doesn't mean I want him to go into himself & be quiet.... It' s really a catch 22 - I want to be alone, but really I don't. I want to be hugged & touched, but yet I don't. He wants to be there for me and help - and I want him to, I just don't know, very well, how to let him. I tend to be independent to a fault. Sometimes it really bites me in the ass....

Not looking forward to the visitation tomorrow night.

Tuesday, January 05, 2010

RIP, Shorty

About 12 hours after arriving at hospice, my dad passed away this morning - I got the call at 6:36 am.

Mom & I didn't want him to suffer any longer, and obviously neither did he. God had a plan - get him where he could be comfortable (although it wasn't his recliner at home) and could be looked after, give us a chance to accept that this time was really the time He wanted Shorty, and let him fall asleep, finally restful, with the help of meds.

He's gone too soon. But if the last few months say anything, he fought as much as he could & even more. Now is his time to rest here on earth & find all that heaven has to offer.

I'm so glad I was able to go on vacation on the bikes with him one last time this past June. He wasn't able to fish as much as I would have liked to see, but he still had fun and caught more fish than either PB or I. I'll never again follow the blue trike blindly wherever it went, knowing that Shorty wouldn't lead me anywhere that wasn't safe. I didn't even have to look both directions before I turned (even though I did - he taught me better than that) because he'd wouldn't go unless there was enough room/space for me to go also. I wish we could have gone out more after we got back but he just wasn't able to. Just a small ride with mom and that was the end of his riding season. But I'm so grateful for that last trip.

Go find the best roads in heaven for us Shorty. I'll be there later to once again follow wherever you lead. i love you

Monday, January 04, 2010