It has been nearly a year since I've last posted to this blog. So much has happened and so much remains the same.
Today is my little sister's 28th birthday. Happy birthday, Sara. I love you more than ever now. I respect you as a person and treasure you as the only person who knows the real me, good and bad. I wish we were celebrating rather than preparing. Let's do Mardi Gras for your 30th.
I cuddle my son and I drink in all the newness of him. I watch his little expressions and wonder at how much he needs me. I still need my mom too. I am struggling with the decision not to run home and help her with my father. You see, my dad is dying. He doesn't have cancer, he isn't suffering from anything that wasn't treatable. He is dying from choices he made long ago. Choices that not only affected him, but everyone who loves him.
My dad has cirrhosis and likely emphysema. He is in acute organ failure. His brain has become cyanotic. I pray he slips into sleep and doesn't wake up. I pray that he makes it through the night as not to burden my sister on her birthday. I pray for my mother, who is strong and good and loving. She holds his hand and accepts he gave her 33 years and can't give another.
He had a good, lucid day yesterday. He remembered he has three daughters and four grandchildren (three boys and one girl). He talked to me for a few minutes in clarity which I appreciated. He will miss us all, but he is at peace. He saw a priest yesterday who gave him his last rites. He said, even having not been to church in over 20 years, that he finally confessed those sins that vexed him the most.
I have a hard time believing in heaven or an afterlife. Despite being raised as a Roman Catholic and still finding comfort in some of the ritual, I don't digest a lot of the teachings well. I think that death is the end. It is scary and will probably scare me more as I age or become sick. I think people only live on in legacy. I think that we are what we leave in others, what we instill in our children and grandchildren. We are those who we've touched in our lifetimes. My dad will live on in lots of people.
I'll share some stories tomorrow, when I am not as exhausted or emotional (yeah right, it is going to be a long battle for me). I guess I will just share as I feel the need or as the stories surface. There are a lot of them I'd like to remember and to share with not only my children, but those who know me. It may give you a glimpse into the person I am and part of the reason behind it.