12/5/09 - Arrival

I must say as much as I love my iPod, listening to books on CD whilst driving is really the very best way to make sure the time goes by ultra fast. At least if you’re listening to a book you really like. Maybe not so much for The Girl, but I’ve never had the drive to my parents’ house go by so quickly.

Generally speaking, upon my arrival at my parents’ house the greeting comes in two waves. The first of which comes via the barking, howling and baying of their three rescued dogs (one of which used to be ours and I love her still as she was my husband’s and my first dog, but she has no love of our carpet). The second is my parents emerging from their house to help with baggage and receive their joyful run and greet from their grandchildren. It’s quite a scene, generally.

Today however, I got only the first wave. The second wave didn’t come until I had the car mostly unloaded. My mom was at work and my dad finally made his way out the door and to the car. And just about scared me to death he looked so awful. He was moving so slowly, had no color in his face and was barely talking above a whisper. And he just continued downhill the rest of the day (we arrived mid-afternoon). By the time it was dinner time I was getting truly worried. I mean when I left him only a week ago he was weaker but still very much my dad. Today however, I fully understood what it meant to be looking “at the shell of a man.”

And I spiraled into this whole thought process of having my children associate Christmas with their Papa’s death. And the anger returned. Because that is so unfair I don’t even know where to start. And needing to jumpstart all of these things that my mom has been actively avoiding and I’ve been just waiting for her to do.

But bedtime has arrived and some peace is returning and I’m remembering that everything is a process and it all starts with breathing in and out.

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