Sunday, March 21, 2010

Ten Years Later

Yesterday marked the tenth anniversary of my father's death. Ten years! Doesn't seem that long ago. He died of lung cancer which had quickly spread to various organs. He went fast. Too fast for me to even get down there to say goodbye. Though I had seen him a couple of months prior to, when he first started getting sick. I remember hugging him goodbye, having a sink feeling that it might have been my last. And it was.

My mom has handled his passing as best as one could expect for a couple that had been together nearly fifty years. I feel bad for her. She has my brother, thankfully, and she gets out with her friends to play bingo, mahjong and other parlor-type games. She loves games! But she's a bit of a shell of the former person she used to be.

I had stayed with her, in Florida, for two weeks after his death. Probably the hardest thing in my life was the moment I had to leave her, all alone. At that point my brother was living a couple of hours away, my sister had gone back to Massachusetts. There was no one there for her. I couldn't imagine how she felt, at that point, now having to be all alone, essentially for the rest of her life.

Anyway, don't mean to be a Debbie Downer.

8 comments:

Anonymous said...

Every major change in someones live takes some getting used to. She probably lives a very pleasant life now. She sounds very social. My mom had to move to elderly housing about a year ago. Before she moved she let us kids know everything that she was going to miss about her small home in the country. She had to give up her 2 little dogs and thankfully gave them to her sister. Just yesterday she was telling me how much she enjoyed the community she lives in now. She has friends and a social life. She walks regularly and enjoys gossiping with her neighbors. What I thought was the beginning of the end of her life turned out to be the beginning of the next phase of her life. She's very happy now, and I no longer thing she's just waiting to die. If you went to visit your mom for 2 weeks now, you'd probably be interrupting her social life...she'd be pleasant while you were there, but thankful when you went home so she could get back to her 'normal' life.

Rick said...

Anonymous you're correct. She is settled into her new life and while she will always miss my father, as will we all, she's moved on. And for that I am grateful. It's funny you should say it but I do in fact interrupt her social life when I visit.

Thanks for your comment.

Sean said...

The people we love are never truly gone as long as those who loved them remember.

Rick said...

Thanks Sean...so true.

Lemuel said...

When my dad died (lung cancer also and quickly [9 months]), my mother basically withdrew. My sister was about a mile away and I was about an hour. I began to see my mother for what she was and to see my father in a different light.

Ur-spo said...

What is a Debbie Downer?

A Lewis said...

Pivotal moments in our lives. Amazing that my father died 16 years ago on the 19th. Now I know why we've become such good friends! And the feeling never goes away. It changes..but never goes away. Big hugs.

Rick said...

You never heard of Debbie Downer? Must be a New England thing...it's someone who brings everyone down.