P. Roy Wilson, Architect and Artist, 1900- 2001
another very poignant and thoughtful story of losing a parent, akin to what Alice wrote last week. both give us ideas and inspiration of how to approach the loss of a beloved. and many thanks to both authors for sharing the intimate tale of how to navigate these troubled waters.
This post provoked a torrent of tears. My father, Al, died in January of 2020 at the age of 96 from congestive heart failure and end stage kidney disease. He struggled in his last two years with constant falls and subsequent stays in rehabs and hospitals, a hip replacement, and dialysis that went on far to long. I realized, after reading your beautiful essay, that my dad could have been thinking the same about me, his first born daughter, because against all logic, he would come through every crisis, weaker, yes, but alive. I wish I knew then what I know now; that when he would sing the old song, “Show Me the Way to home Home” that he wasn’t just thinking about his actual house but something more.
His final days were spent in rehab, after recovering once again from an accident in an Ambulette taking him to dialysis on Thanksgiving morning. Amazingly, he hung on for two more months but eventually died in the hospital surrounded by me and my two adult children, holding his hands, and trying to sooth him with our songs and our voices telling him he was not alone. He struggled but my son, wisely, said what I couldn’t, that it was okay to go, that we were all there. Only then was he able to eventually let go.
Thank you for your beautiful essay about your own father that allowed me, nearly three years later, to reflect on that which has haunted me since his death.
With a grateful heart,
I love it Pat! It rings true in my heart, as I'm a recent widow and had to learn all about COPD, congestive heart failure and dementia after 7 years of hands on caregiving.
My life partner died recently at 86. Thanks for sharing your experiences. I'm writing a memoir of my spousal caregiving experiences focusing on the mental and emotional challenges in my caregiving. Caregiving for the Mind is the working title.
Such a beautiful tribute to your father. What a wonderful man he was. It seems quite often those we love don't want our present in their transition to death. The quote is wonderful. My father was five months short of 100 years. He died alone, but maybe that's what he wanted. Your writing gives me comfort.
What a lovely comment. I'm pleased that you like the quote and that my writing has given you comfort.
What a fabulous and respectful piece that shares your love and enduring attachment with your father.
Sally, I much appreciate your insightful comment. Thanks for reading and responding.
I just loved this piece of your father and the love and respect you have. I felt like I had met him in person. Thank you.
Thank you for sharing. Powerful.