Wednesday, October 08, 2008

Just Being There

This morning I will attend the funeral of a good friend and colleague's father who passed away this past Sunday morning. Knowing what his father meant to my friend Eric makes the untimely passing all that more difficult for him I know. I know his heart is breaking and I can only imagine the void that is left in his absence.

I grapple with thinking about what it might mean to me not to be able to pick up the phone and call my own dad. He is without a doubt my best friend. Alzheimer's has robbed my mom from the ability to know me when I come home and undoubtedly she has no idea who the voice is on the other end of the phone line when I call. For me, I have grown accustomed to the hurt that her absence has caused me and I sense Dad knows this so he more than tries to make up for it when we talk. In some ways mom's disease has brought Dad and I closer together in so many ways.

As my parents grow older its hard not to imagine what it will inevitably be like to not have them there. My heart races just thinking about it. I know when my wife's father passed away it left me numb and in shock because it was just wasn't so supposed to happen like that. I still expect to see Ray sitting in his chair reading his paper and sipping his coffee when we go to her parent's house for the holidays. I guess that missing him will never go away. Boy how I wish we could play guitars one more time.

I can't imagine the pain that Eric must be going through right now but I know somehow some way that having his friends and family gathered around him today will somehow warm his hurting heart. That's all we can really do at a time like this - just be there when we are needed the most.

Tomorrow my dad comes into town for a visit. That generally equates to a lot of exotic beer drinking and a whole lot of fishing. Somehow I think this visit will be different - more important than ever to me. I expect I will make sure he knows just a little bit more how much he means to me and that I cherish these stolen moments with him. I will enjoy every minute of his visit and enjoy just being there with him.

You can rest assured I will be giving him a great big hug and holding onto him just a little longer than normal and making sure my old man knows his boy sure loves him.

Ripple On My Friends!!!


Anonymous said...

thank you for remembering my dad that way....He loved playing his old guitar for anyone who would listen....There isn't a day that goes by that I don't think about him or miss him but I know that he is happily watching our boys as they grow! Love you


Lisa G. said...

I wish you the best visit ever with your Dad! As you know, I lost my Mom a couple of years ago and you are so right, you never quite missing them. I still have my Dad, and I do cherish every moment I have with him. We celebrated his 90th birthday in June with a family reunion, and I only wish my Mom could have been there to share in the fun.

I know it is hard not being able to communicate with your Mom, but maybe on some level she feels the love of her family - we can only hope that they know how very much we love them....Lisa G.

Suebs said...

Awh man, what a heart-tugging post. :-( Definitely makes me appreciate the 'now' more. Thank you. I hope your friend finds peace, but he, and your wife, is lucky to have you to lean on.