Sunday, March 30, 2014

Remembering My Dad


My dad passed away Feb 1 and suddenly everything that seemed timely or urgent is on the back burner and not as significant as it was before.  He was an incredible person; 87 and relatively healthy, though living in a nursing home because he was limited to a wheelchair and my 86 year old mother couldn't care for him at home.  Within a week he developed congestive heart failure, then pneumonia, then was found to have cancer that had spread from his lungs and throughout his body. I got the call that he was going into hospice care, so I booked a flight home and within a couple hours he was gone. Peacefully and painlessly.

So when I was home, my family thought I should be the one to share "family remembrances" at the funeral. Sure, I thought. I never met a crowd or microphone I didn't like, so I prayed to God for wisdom and words to rise to the challenge. How do I narrow down 87 ( well, more like 58 years) that I had with him on earth? I focused on the fun and wild vacations we took almost yearly: 5 kids, my mom, a camper,  loaf of bread and pb &j (Tiffany's fast food, before there was fast food) and 2 weeks of FUN exploring the USA. I knew it would generate laughs from my family and add some levity to the somber day. Which it did and by the grace of God I got through it with a minimum of tears. Those came later.
Actually, the viewing and funeral had to be delayed a day because northwest Ohio was in the throes of one of their countless blizzards and sub zero temperatures. They had different alerts and this was an "ain't nobody driving, no way no how" situation. Another confirmation for why I live in a Florida.

So thank you for allowing this rambling reminiscence of my wonderful piano playing, hilarious, tender, kind, strong, life of the party dad. He will be missed and was a reason why I am now, and continue to be, grounded.