New Mama Musings

Monday, May 26, 2008

RIP: December 13, 1928 - May 25, 2008

My dad passed away last night.

At around the time my dad was dying I had gone to bed and laid there, watching Henry sleep, and thinking about my dad. When he was about Henry's age his beloved older sister Frances died of influenza, and not understanding, he sat on the front steps of their house waiting for her to come home.

I imagined that little boy being Henry, and then I thought of my dad the way he was yesterday -- waxy-looking, with his mouth open, and the death rattle in his breathing -- and got all freaked out about mortality.

We had a thunderstorm last night -- the first one in a long time -- and I also thought of my dad lying in his room in the hospice with its one wall of windows, and of the lightening flashing and my dad being there by himself. I wondered if he would pass away like that. (My mom, exhausted, had gone home to sleep, but some nurses were with him when he died.)

For so long I had been thinking that since my dad was such a terrible father, this wasn't really affecting me...but I think I was wrong. He was still my dad, even if he wasn't the dad I would have wanted.

This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
This is the way the world ends
Not with a bang but a whimper.


--T.S. Eliot

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