Monday, March 29, 2010

RIP



At 2:45am on Friday (3/26/10) morning my father finally succumbed to the cancer that had been slowly killing him for ten years. Mom called me at 2am from the nursing home and my sister and I got there just as he was being pronounced deceased. Shortly thereafter my brothers and their wives arrived.
Owing that Dad left his body to science, the nurses placed bags of ice around him and opened the window (it was gently snowing outside). A very strange experience while we comforted Mom and each other.
Every one of us had a complicated, if not conflicted, relationship with Dad. He was not an easy man to love or to be around. The biggest mark he left on me is that it is nearly impossible to say something cruel or cutting to me and have me be hurt in the least. That part of me just got toughened up as a child. Kind of like being desensitized after repeated nerve damage. I don't know.
Anyway, he's gone now, in a way. But there's a legacy that remains in each of his children. Especially my brothers, one of whom Dad took a swing at when Dad finally went into the nursing facility. If Mom's smart she won't have any of us give the eulogy at his memorial service and instead tap someone who didn't know him very well or one of his old drinking buddies.

7 comments:

gypsywee said...

Jennifer, I'm so sorry.

Phoenix said...

:( I am so sorry... sometimes it's even worse to lose those people that we had complicated relationships with. My heart goes out to you and I hope that you are well.

Heather Taylor said...

RIP, that's so tragic. I'm so sorry for your loss.

H said...

I'm very sorry for your loss, Jennifer, and for any heartache you've endured in the past.

Hugs to you, Caty, Cree, Jake and the rest of your family.

Also...
The photo accompanying this blog entry is gorgeous! For some reason, I have an image of scattering red rose petals while strolling through the icy allee.

TheWeyrd1 said...

I'm sorry about the pain for your family. I had a different experience with my dad. As a child he was the one that worked and came home to his wife and kids...but mostly his wife. On the weekends it was more kid time...but more with my younger brother. My dad also died of cancer, but much more quickly. He passed in the middle of the night at a nursing home, so none of us were able to be with him at the end, but I made my peace with that when I visited him the month prior...I had to travel 900 plus miles to visit. He also gave his body to science, so my mom saw him several hours before he died, but not after... My mom's the one with comments that toughen up kids. My dad was the sweet parent...I miss him. It's good that you have your family nearby...

jennifer from pittsburgh said...

I'm relieved that this happened just as spring was coming and not in the cold and gloom of winter. It's just easier to get mom doing something instead of sitting around feeling lonely.
Thanks also for your kind words and thoughts at this time :)

drollgirl said...

oh jennifer. you must have so many conflicting emotions over the passing of your father. i don't have any great words of wisdom, but i hope you are doing ok. or semi-ok. death is so hard to deal with, no matter what the relationship.

hang in there, and i hope you can be surrounded by those that you love and understand how difficult your relationship with your dad must have been.