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Waiting for the end….

August 30, 2011

On Sunday, I leaned over and gave my dad a hug, kissed him on the forehead and told him “Thank you.”  I was thanking him for everything he did for me as my father. He coached Little League baseball when I wanted to play.  He provided support to the band by transporting instruments to various locations across the state of Florida.  He helped me with my homework and with large school projects that involved building various items.  These are the memories that I will treasure of my dad.  By concentrating on these memories, I may be able to get over my anger at everything.

Last night, my father was transported to a hospice center.  The doctors have told us that there is no chance for a meaningful recovery, as any procedure they do would put a great strain on his body and it is not capable of handling it.  What started as a drunken fall in the garage has led to his liver shutting down. As they try to treat the liver, the kidneys began to fail.  As they treat the kidneys, there is a bowel obstruction.  Since he is not eating, they want to provide him nutrients through the IV.  But, by providing this, they could shock his pancreas, leading to pancreatitis.  They want to do a colonoscopy, but if they sedate him, they will kill him.  This past Friday, after speaking with an internal medicine doctor, a kidney doctor, a gastrointestinal doctor and a surgeon, we decided to stop trying to heal my father.  Instead, we just worked to make him comfortable.

As I write this, I am overcome with many different emotions.  The first emotion is sadness.  The man, who raised me to be who I am today, will be gone soon.  This will leave a huge void in my life.  The other day, I was struggling to get our generator started in preparation for the hurricane.  After 15 minutes of fruitless efforts, I reached for the phone to call my dad and ask for ideas.  I then sat down and cried.  I cried because the man I always depended on for advice, whether it was handyman advice or work advice, was gone.  I cried because I realized that this Father’s Day, I will not be making a call I have been making every year since getting married. More than that, this Christmas will be hard, as my dad will not be there to direct the distribution of gifts.

But, before I get too sad, the anger takes over.  While it breaks my heart to see my dad like this, he did it to himself.  In April of this year, I asked my dad to stop drinking.  Not for me, but for my daughter, his granddaughter.  I told him I wanted him there for every special event, from graduation to her wedding.  He put his hand on my shoulder and told me not to worry, he had it under control.  And, for a brief period of time, I hoped he had it under control. Instead, I have to tell my daughter, who loved my dad to pieces, that grandpa is gone.  We all deal with loss, but how can I not be angry about this?

I try to remember all the good things my dad did for me.  He was always there for me as a child and an adult.  But, every good memory gets pushed away by the memory of the beer in his hand.  I love my dad with all my heart, but I am having a hard time dealing with this.  He choose a bottle over everything, and the bottle won.


From → Alcoholism

  1. I’m so sorry. I will pray for you and your family. Lost my dad a couple of mths ago.

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