Wednesday, January 26, 2011

an ending and a beginning

We buried C's father today. He was "under the weather" for about a month and passed away peacefully on Saturday. C and his brothers all had the chance for a last conversation with their dad, and there was mercifully no lingering suffering to endure. The official diagnosis won't be in until Friday, but his doctors suspect ALS. The family marvels at the irony... a Red Sox fan, stricken by a disease made famous by a Yankee. That's one thing I love about this family I married into- in the darkest moments, they look for something to laugh about. And this week, when they couldn't find something to joke about, they had Charlotte to bring a smile to their faces. I'm grateful to have been able to share our daughter with them and ease some of the pain, and Charlotte obliged by entertaining like a pro- panting and signing "dog" upon request, happily sitting in just about anyone's arms (as long as I was in sight), waving "hello" and "good-bye" as well-wishers came and went, and gleefully running in circles holding onto anyone's hands who was willing to bend down to help her walk. She brought out a lot of smiles at the post-funeral gathering, and C and his brothers all agreed that her presence has been a true blessing this week.

It's got me thinking about my own mortality, and C's. Our resolve to create a sibling for Charlotte has been strengthened, as C experienced first-hand the unique support a sibling can provide when a parent is lost. Even though C has the most amazing friends I've ever met, C relied mostly on his brothers this week. And I know that when the time comes, my own siblings will be my primary source of comfort. I want Charlotte to have that. It turned out that our 2010 insurance covers us through the end of February, so Project Sibling will officially launch on 3/1. Tomorrow, I am finalizing our insurance selection and calling the RE.

It's a bit cliche, but please tell the folks you love that you love them. Don't wait for the next time it's convenient. Take those pictures of yourself and those dearest to you, even if there's no big event or dramatic landscape in the background. We have no photos of Charlotte with C's dad. No evidence to show her that she and he were alive at the same time. I'm generally not one for regrets, but I regret that immensely.


BB said...

So sorry to hear about the loss. I know what you mean in your last paragraph! I want to recount one of my experiences. Over a dozen years ago (some time in the 90s), I was pissed... don't remember why, but for some silly reason... and I wasn't willing to talk with my folks at that very moment... and my grandfather was visiting and I didn't speak to him either and niether did I say a good bye to him... and guess what, I never saw him again! I haven't regreted anything as much as I have regreted this... and every time I am mad at some one, I can't stay mad for too long... because deep with in I fear that I might repeat history! Life is too short and you really have to cherish every moment you have with your loved ones... one of the very reasons why we made a long trip abroad to go see the babes grandparents!

IrishNYC said...

I"m very sorry to hear of your loss. When my dad passed away in 2009, B was a great source of distraction and comfort.

Good luck with project sibling!