Moods Revisited…

In the past few months, my father has been having more trouble in walking.  Sunday, he fell twice; my brother David and Daddy’s neighbor got him up the first time, but the second time, the fire department had to come out…again.  When I saw Daddy after work on Sunday, he hadn’t had anything to eat or drink all day because he’d been afraid to walk into the kitchen.  He did make it to the bathroom, but he can’t stand long enough to drink water from the sink and he can’t carry a glass of water with his walker.

 David and I have been doing what we can to keep him at home, but now, even Daddy admits he can no longer live alone.  While it saddens me he has to lose his independence, I have to admit, I’m also relieved he will be safe.  We’re going to admit him to an assisted living home in the Broken Arrow area.  Daddy will have full imput on where he goes, but the one we’re leaning towards will let him be in a private space with his own things around him.  Best of all, my social butterfly dad will have a whole new group of ladies to charm with his hand-kissing ways.

The main reason I bring this up is that I always feared that when this time came, my brother and I wouldn’t be able to work together.  But we have.  Somehow, somewhere along the way to adulthood,  David and I “lost” each other as brother and sister.  I don’t know if it’s because we finally matured or because the moon is in the right quarter, but in this project we can finally work together.  I suspect it’s because we both love Daddy and want the best for him.  And because, despite all things, we ARE family.

I’ve been reading a new author, or at least, a new author for me…Kristin Hannah.  Remember a few weeks ago when we discussed how moods can affect what we read or write?  In this instance, what I’m reading is affecting my mood during the difficult time.  For those of you who have never read Hannah, she writes these wonderful stories about dysfunctional families who find redemption through learning to love again.  She makes you laugh.  (“Let’s not drink our own bathwater, shall we?  It’s one of the things that separates us from the lesser primates.  Like men.” )  She makes you cry.  But most of all she makes you believe in families and love.

And right now, she’s making it so much easier for me to take care of my Daddy.


10 thoughts on “Moods Revisited…

  1. Jackie, I think it’s wonderful that you and your brother are working together in this. I can only imagine how hard it is for you. And I also understand how a book can see you through.
    In my many trials while I was growing up, especially while I was a teenager, I would lose myself in books. Yeah, they had hard times, but they always loved each other and there was always a happy ending. It was a world where I could imagine myself there and be loved.
    Books bring a joy to the world no one can even put a price one. 🙂
    I’m glad your dad has you and your brother…and I’m glad you have him.

  2. Big hug Jackie on this difficult time. You are really blessed that you and your brother can work together. The best thing in the world is when your mutual love of someone can bring you together. My brothers and I have had a contentious relationship over the years, but the past few years we’ve drawn closer. I am pretty sure it is because my Mom, while in great health and able to live life on her own terms, is not getting any younger.

    Books have always helped me through the tough times. I can honestly say that romance writers got me through the death of my husband. There were days I wanted to just stay in bed and cry. While I sometimes did spend the whole day in bed I spent it there with some good books and eventually they helped me believe that everything would be okay. Different, but okay, and that there are HEAs out there.

  3. Jackie–I too, am so glad that you and your brother have come together, and your post touched me so deeply. My sister and I did come together for a brief moment when my father was so sick. Now we don’t speak. I miss her terribly, but enough of that.

    How wonderful to find an author who helps you through these trying times.

    My best for you, your father and your family. Big hugs!

  4. My sympathy, too, Jackie. I’m glad your father’s facing the need, though, rather than denying it. When my aunts had to put my grandmother in a nursing home, every time she saw them for weeks, she’d start singing “Precious Memories,” which was a funeral song in our chuch. (Upset the heck out of ’em, too, every time.) She had been so independent and strong, and she just never accepted that she couldn’t live on her own any longer.

    It’s a tough time. I’m glad Kristin’s helping you.

  5. So far, neither of my parents or in-laws have needed assisted living. I do remember when a great-uncle, who was like a grandfather to me, had a stroke and could no longer live alone. He’d been so independent and it was hard on everyone. I remember my dad saying that getting old wasn’t for sissies.

    I’m really glad your brother is there for you, and vice versa. It makes all the difference. When mom was diagnosed with terminal cancer, my sister and I put aside all our stupid squabbling and pulled together for mom’s sake. You could tell mom was relieved we were finally getting along and it made life more pleasant for her. It’s amazing how close sis and I grew during those few months. And we’re still close, which I’m really glad of.

    I’ll keep your dad and the rest of your family in my prayers.

  6. Trust me, Louisa, there’s NO WAY I’d want to go through life without a book. I carry one with me all the time. I’ve had bosses who question when I have time to read and I tell them that even if I can’t read it, it “settles” me to have it close. Kinda like a security blanket. 🙂

  7. Meg–I hope my brother and I don’t drift apart after my dad’s gone. Though I have to admit, there have been times when I thought that once daddy went to his reward, I’d break all ties with David. Hope you and your sister find your way to each other again.

  8. Actually, Marilyn, it got better today. Daddy loves the place David found. He’ll have his own little “apartment” with his stuff around him. We’re getting him a power chair so he can get around the place easily. Having him so enthusiastic about the move goes a long way toward making me feel easier.

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