I’ve found myself thinking about Dad a lot more than usual the last couple days. I’ll be at work doing paperwork and then be reminded that he is lying in the hospital and not aware for the most part what is going on around him and fighting for his life. I’m not sure that he is fighting to keep his injuries from killing him but in this case he is fighting to have a conscious life. To overcome his injuries so that he can participate in life and not just survive this accident.
I think about some of the things we’ve done together in the past. I realized that much of what he and I enjoyed together had to do with eating and playing cribbage or both at the same time. There are lots of places we have been to eat. As a matter of fact the last time we were out there in November we went to the Keys restaurant in downtown White Bear Lake and enjoyed breakfast together. That might have been the first time that Lisa and I took him out to eat instead of the other way around. Most recently in his weekly email he mentioned that he had found a German Restaurant that he enjoyed and a dish that was one he had last had in Munich. I thought to ask him when and what he was doing in Munich but didn’t and so I don’t know, and maybe never will. I did write him a quick email and say I would really like to go to that German Restaurant with him on our next trip out as there haven’t German Restaurants in our area for several years and I love German food. He agreed we would have to do that. That likely won’t happen now, at least not for a long time. He may well not remember that restaurant after his fall.
Grieving is such an interesting thing. A person doesn’t have to die for us to grieve them. We can already miss aspects of our relationship with them as life and age or accident or just change takes those parts away. I miss these things and fear that we will never enjoy them like we have done for the past many years.
Grief is not a terrible or harmful thing but rather is the human way of adjusting to changing circumstances that require that we modify ourselves to a new reality or at least prepare for a possible new reality. It requires changing our expectations and maybe finding pleasure in new or simpler things. I can do it; I can grieve for Dad and the loss of old times…but not with a smile. L