Some of you already read this news in my comment replies yesterday or on my Instagram feed, but if you haven’t, I’ve decided to spend a few more days down here. It became very clear that it was too soon for me to leave; my sister wasn’t ready for me to leave. Neither was I. When I texted her at work later in the day and suggested staying a bit, instead of a protest, she immediately texted one word: Yes. So, with Don’s blessing and support (even though he was disappointed that he wasn’t going to see me last night) I changed the reservation and I’ll be here until Saturday.
There are still things to be done; phone calls I can make while Meredith is at work, lists to be made, and, even though we spent Saturday and Sunday sorting through the most personal of my parents’ possessions, there is obviously a lot more sorting to do. And we have to find a home for the cats. Stacy has offered to take them, but she has 3 cats and 3 dogs already. I’m a little worried about these two cats who have lived a quiet life with my parents, who have never known anything but life with each other and, most recently, my dad. My dad wanted them to be adopted as a pair. That’s a tough order. And Lydia is like a watch cat. She can be very testy. Luke is a doll. So…what do we do? I’m praying a solution that will be the best possible scenario will come. As it is, we walk in the door at the condo to see Lydia sitting in my mom’s chair, watching the door, waiting for Dad to come home. It breaks my heart.
A moment from my dad’s last hours: I inherited this ring from my mom. Dad gave it to her for their 60th wedding anniversary and she wanted me to have it. I don’t wear it all the time, only on special occasions. As I was throwing things in my suitcase last Wednesday, I saw it on my dresser and a gut feeling told me to put it on my finger. So I did.
At one point during the many hours at Dad’s bedside, I was sitting on his right, holding his hand. His finger found the ring. As Meredith, my brother-in-law, and I watched, his finger started to stroke the ring, moving slowly back and forth.
He knew the ring. He knew the shape and the texture. And as Meredith says, my hands and skin are like Mom’s. My hand felt like my mom’s. I was channeling my mother for my dad. It was an amazing moment. From that point on, whenever I could tuck the ring under one of his fingers, I did.
I’ve been trying to read my book, but it’s been hard for me to concentrate. Nevertheless, I tote it wherever I go, trusting that my reading instinct will kick in.
And there’s a little boy who is demanding a lot of my attention.