Paul is singing about once there being a way to get back home and I am squirming in my seat because the flight isn’t moving fast enough for me.
I had barely made it back to Texas when I got the call saying the doc wasn’t sure if my dad would survive the night.
He had been through some horrific moments and had agreed to an operation that was supposed to help him buy more time.
It was a life saving operation with several catches, one of which was it wasn’t going to stop the cancer. At best it would help him pay Father Time a few bucks to stick around a little while longer.
What he didn’t know was the cost however many extra days he would get or that it might be a price too high to pay.
Are You Going To Be In My Dreams Tonight?
Three hours after I got the word about dad I found a way to hop the aforementioned flight back to LA and did my best to relax.
I did a decent job of not letting stress and worry overwhelm me while on the plane, but did less well on the ground.
One of the more pleasant surprises of recent time came when I landed and discovered multiple Facebook messages offering support.
They came in response to a post in which I vented a bit about having to make a 50 mile run in traffic while not knowing what shape father would be in.
Thanks to the magic of cellphones I knew in advance of my arrival at his hospital he was alive. More relief came from hearing him call me by name and track me with his eyes upon entry into the room.
That was midnight PST, having come from the Central Time Zone my internal clock was two hours ahead meaning it would have been wise to go to sleep immediately.
It didn’t happen and not just because I slept on a couch next to his bed.
Maybe it was adrenaline, maybe it was nurses moving in and out of his room or maybe it was because the medicine wasn’t working to help with his pain.
And now midnight of the following day approaches and I think I might have gotten a total of 4 hours, none consecutive during the past day or so.
In a few minutes I am going to try to go to sleep, but this time on the couch at my parent’s house.
I wonder if exhaustion will win or if stress will dominate.
Hospice says dad is straddling worlds, still occupying space here but yet not totally here.
Most of his conversation has stopped and just as we begin to think maybe we are just waiting for the inevitable he surprises us again and speaks a bit.
That makes me a little crazy because I begin to hope that maybe there is something going on, maybe there is some miracle.
And it makes me crazy because I don’t want him to suffer and he is not comfortable. I don’t want him to be in pain just so that I might have my father around.
I don’t want to be selfish but I want to be able to call him. I want to be able to show him around Dallas and share this new part of life with him. I want to just keep doing what we have done for 49 years.
But that is not going to happen, that time has passed and it makes me very sad and a little angry.
Don’t Grieve Yet
As of the last hour nothing has changed and he is still with us. Unless hospice has failed to share key information dad is still with us.
But I find myself starting to grieve a bit.
I find myself feeling sad because the back and forth conversation seems to be gone. We have reached a place where there are hours with next to no words and if words come it is more like a word.
It feels like he is slipping away because he is but I don’t want to grieve when he is still around. It seems wrong.
I have been blessed with lots of comments, calls and messages offering support. I have been pleasantly surprised by how much that has helped.
Gratitude pours out of me and though I haven’t responded to each message individually the way I ought to I have at least acknowledged them,
That is about all I have been able to do so far.
Those messages of support deserve individual responses, an acknowledgement but I haven’t been able to do it yet.
I am too busy just hanging hard.
Too busy trying live in this moment and set aside the sadness that is coming. It will have its time and I will give it its due, but it needs to take a number.
If only life were that simple, that easy and that cooperative.
It is not.
I don’t know if this post makes sense or if it is just random gibberish. I just hope it takes enough of the edge off to get a decent night of shut eye.
Can’t not sleep because I fear waking up to bad news.
Can’t sleep because I am wound up.
Got to hope this takes the edge off a little bit.
The last thing I said to dad was “I love you.” I think he heard it.
Guess I’ll have to see if I get to say it again.
We don’t tell the people we love that we love them enough.
Maybe it is because we fear being too vulnerable or being misunderstood.
Maybe it’s because we fear it won’t be reciprocated or maybe it is all and none of those things.
All I know is my heart hurts and that I am grateful for the support my family and I have received.
Got to run now, it is time to try again.