Tag Archive | Pops

SATURDAYS

Saturday

Sixth day in the week. BEST DAY 

My Pops suffered with dementia. When I first started looking after him he would often ask me, “Is today Saturday?”  At first I thought it was a little odd and I would correct him. As the frequency of his questioning increased it bothered me. It was so tough on me emotionally to see my beloved dad struggle with time. My hubby helped me put it into prospective one day. “It was probably the only day your Dad had for himself.”

My Dad sometimes worked two jobs. He crawled out of bed shortly after 4 am each day and left the house every morning before 5 am to go to work.  Saturday was quite possibly the ONLY day my Pops ever had off. It was his favorite day. A day he got to spend watching TV, running errands, being with his girls, relaxing. It was his BEST DAY every week.

I have made Saturday my favorite day of the week. I try to be upbeat and positive and cram as much life into every Saturday I am blessed to have. I am everything wonderful because of his love.
This will be my first Father’s Day without him by my side. I miss him terribly.

 


He is in my thoughts everyday. Happy Father’s Day, Dad! You know I love you, right?

Hands

His hands were thick and stocky. The fingers twisted and knotted from a lifetime of physical labor. He carried each of his daughters with those hands. He threatened to end many a boys lives with those hands; just let one of those boys be foolish enough to harm his girls. Those hands dried tears and helped to wipe runny noses. Those hands were quick to unleash justice from the end of his belt even if his pants threatened to fall down. I miss those hands. When I was a little girl I used to like to watch my Dad’s hands as they worked. He ran a mean a shoe shine kit. I loved watching him fix his car or work on a project or when he let me watch him shave. I would sit quietly on the edge of the sink as my Pop prepped his face for a Sunday before church shave. Everyday before my Dad left for work he would use his electric shaver or a make quick run over his chops with a cheap disposable razor but Sundays were special. On Sundays my Dad went out of his way to be dressed in his absolute best. I miss the smell of Old Spice in the air.

My Dad would stand at the bathroom sink, while hot water filled the basin and he would tell me the stories of his Dad. How his father before him had a straight razor, a strop, a brush, and a mug with a cake of shaving soap. My Dad would wet his cupped hands in the basin drawing hot water up to his face. He’d grab the boar haired brush off its little stand and wet it in the sink. He would spin that brush over the surface of the cake in the mug until the lather spilled out over the edge and I could smell the fragrant soap in the air. He would make the funniest of faces while he dragged that soapy brush all over his face and neck. I was mesmerized by the act of shaving:   rinsing, shaving, lathering, shaving…
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I loved to watch my Dad make himself beautiful. When he was finished shaving he’d pour some Old Spice into his hands rub them together quickly and then give his face a few quick slaps. “Good for what ails you” he announced to no one in particular. If I was lucky he’d dab a little on my cheeks and send me on my way. I loved smelling like a hug from my Dad  It made me feel special. =  )

As a child I remember many nights when he came home from work tired, hungry and beaten by the crap of the day. There was always something more to do. Sound familiar? How he looked forward to the weekend. How we all look forward to the weekend, feelings lost on the foolishness of youth but cherished today for what they really mean to an adult.

Now I realize that I was making memories, then I was just loving my Dad for all of the things that made him special to me.

I miss you Pops.

In The Evening

So it’s another Friday night, I am sitting in my office trying not to be distracted by the number of phone calls that are coming in to my landline (yes, I still have a landline) which are cold calls for crap that I will not buy or sign up for or be tricked into giving away info about myself or my sex habits or food preferences. Gone are “the good ole days” when my house phone would ring and there was an actual person on the other end of the line that I cared about. I only kept my landline for my Dad who was living with dementia. He lost many memories and was often very unsure about things around him but he KNEW my phone number. I was his lifeline from a better time. I kept that landline for him so he would always be able to find me. Sometimes life is about the small things that make us feel loved and safe.

I wish he could find me now. There are days in my life that I do not do well with:  May 15, June 9, June 11, September 28, October 12, January 30, February 6. My list used to be shorter but as I lose people in my life I find it growing. Like the last flower in a field I find myself turning against the wind, trying to be brave. Where have all the flowers gone? Where are the bees? I need to feel the warm of the sun on my face. I want to be embraced by the love that was once mine to have that I often ignored or mistreated.

I am oddly emotional this evening. I am tired. I do not want to adult today. Today I wanted to spend time with my Dad in the worst way but he had other plans. I am sad because I MISS THEM. The people in your life are your greatest gift, they know all of your secrets good, bad and scary and they choose to love you anyway. Cherish them.

Pardon the Interruption…

…We now return you to our regularly schedule programming. You never know what you are made of until you are forced to see ;  )

My Friday evenings are usually spent thinking of something inspirational and thought provoking for my group of fellow WWs. I try to blog before our weekly gathering on Saturday morning. This week was tough for me. Life dealt me a tough hand that ruined my week that threw me into a spin. My beloved Pops passed away in his sleep Wednesday night.

I knew someday it would have to happen, like most people I assumed we’d have another day. My bad. Let me say I have no regrets. I never let anything go undone when it came to my Dad. He gave me so much yet I feel like I gave him so little in return. I owed him a great deal. He taught me about perseverance, strength, love, beauty. He was not a perfect man but he was a great one. I have cried a lot in the past few days; but, I have also smiled and laughed and have been touched so profoundly by other people’s love for both me and my Dad.

I am truly blessed. My heart has grown three sizes. I thought I might not be able to keep on track and manage my foods.  I haven’t felt the need to feed my sadness. He is at peace. So I feel at peace. Whatever time we had together, whatever there was left to do that’s not yet done is okay, it’s all good. We had a great run, didn’t we DAD? I will stay the course and I will make it to my goal whatever it is because I have what I need to get there. He believed in me. He loved me. He had faith that everything always turns out just the way it is supposed to. I don’t intend to let him down. I am his daughter.

Never Give UP on the Person You Are Meant to Be

Faith is believing. I believe that someone will always be there in my corner guiding my way. These are my angels: Dad, Mom and my kid sister. Until we meet again all of my love, ❤ Trish

A heartbeat…

…that is all it takes. One heartbeat between life and death. He was a good man. He had a family. He loved the people in his life in the best possible way; by being there. This man was my Dad. I love him. He taught me to live, to be kind, to drive a car, change a tire, whistle like nobody’s business. All of the very best things that I am are because of him. He was my biggest fan and my most favorite companion. I get my singing talent from him. He loved a good laugh and horrible jokes. To me he will always be my SUPERHERO.

He could yodel and had a great Tarzan yell. He loved country (& Western) music and dabbled in turning a tune or two. He believed in a higher power and tried never to miss church. He was a good man. He had a wife and three daughters. He loved us with his whole being. My Dad never had much but was always ready to share what he could.

Over time my Dad lost many things, a daughter, a wife, precious siblings, memories he wanted to know. My Dad had vascular dementia. He never lost me. I had him in the palm of my hand. I protected and cared for him with everything I had. We made memories that will last me the rest of my life. My Dad passed away last night. There will never be a day that I won’t miss him. There will never be a day that I am not thankful for all the wonderful memories we made.

“You know that I love you Dad?” Yes, I know. I love you too, sweetheart.”

Go dance in the stars Pop… You are finally FREE!!!!assorted 014

 

What Makes Us Different…

makes us the same.

It starts early in my day on Fridays. I start thinking about what I want to blog about. I worry no one will read my thoughts or worse that no one will care.  Sometimes I wonder if the effort I put in is worth it. Then I remember this blog is for me. I write as a way to keep myself in check. I share how I am feeling in the hopes that what I have to say helps one person to realize that they are not alone. We all struggle with something :  loneliness, depression, weight, beauty, stress from a bad marriage, death of a loved one…the list is endless. What makes us different makes us the same.

I started this weight loss journey again in February. I decided it was time for me to change my outlook (I had painted it grim, I was buying my own lies hook, line, and sinker). I forgot how to be happy, to live in my moments. I had spent so much time and energy trying to be the best daughter to my Pops, who suffers with dementia, that I had stopped taking care of myself. I stopped caring about me. I should have reached out for help. Maybe, I wouldn’t have gotten so lost if I had just stopped and asked for direction.

I throw a wall of emotions out in front of me to keep me safe from prying eyes. I make people laugh so I won’t cry. I sing because I am in distress. I eat because I am angry and I don’t know how to use that negative energy in a positive way. I decided that those things that are sometimes true about me needed to be changed. I needed to change. I am learning to own my anger. I don’t have to self-destruct. I am bigger than that. I am worth more than that. I am learning to laugh from joy. I sing because it makes me happy. I  try to talk myself out of my anger. I am trying to let go of things I am unable to change.  I am growing as a person, not in the waistband, a first for me.  = )

The truth is everyone is afraid to get hurt. Life is not a free ride. It comes with pain and disappointment. It has moments of grief and anger. It is the longest, most intense adventure you will ever undertake. You deserve to be in every messy, wonderful, emotion filled moment of it. Learn to be kind to yourself. You do it for other people, learn to value yourself. Stop blaming yourself for the way things have gone in the past. Live for the now.

You have the chance to be a better version of you, right now.  You are strong enough to stand up for what you want. There is no need to feel guilty about being successful at being you. Never give up on the person you are meant to be.

What makes us different makes us the same  =  ) We can do this Cupcake!

 

 

Kathy’s Song

She was there. My Pops had just been transferred from the hospital to enter the uncertain life as a nursing home resident. In the short span of his first week he was busted from the fifth floor to the fourth because he needed additional looking after. Which I learned really meant that my dad in his confusion would sometimes enter other patients rooms and well, wreak havoc. He didn’t mean any harm but nonetheless disturbances of any kind can have a very negative effect on the frail and/ or elderly who are just trying to have a little peace in their lives. I wasn’t happy the staff wanted to move my Pops but I understood so with minimal crabbing from me I helped the CNA move my dad to his new digs.  She was there.

Our first meeting is difficult for me to recall, not because I have memory issues but more from the level of stress I hadn’t yet sorted out. Everything that was happening to Dad and I still hadn’t sunken into my thought process. I was feeling so overwhelmed and beaten. I felt numb. She was there. Her name is Kathy. Her hubby was one of the residents at my Dad’s new “home”. She was friendly and talkative. I felt comfortable in her presence from that first moment. She showed me around the fourth floor and gave me a few pointers about the staff, the meal times, how to control the heat in Dad’s room, where to find extra linens. By reaching out to me she changed that moment of fear for me. I relaxed a little and I felt a wave of relief I was sure was never going to come.

I am sure she has no idea how much that day changed me. It changed the way I view my Dad’s living situation. It changed the way I am towards other people who have loved ones suffering from illnesses and dementia. Even though each of our battles are unique to us we are all in the same war; fighting to give our loved one the best “rest of their lives”.  My Pops was only at his first nursing home for two weeks when a bed became available closer to my home in a better environment. I jumped at the opportunity. I am not sorry that I moved Pops. We are both happier and healthier now. Kathy’s hubby has moved as well into a better living arrangement. I couldn’t be happier for them both.

Kathy and I keep in touch as much as possible, gotta love the interwebs, and today we went to lunch. I had a wonderful time. Thank you Kathy for being the light of hope I needed so badly that day. Never forget that one person can change the world. Never underestimate what you mean to someone else.

Love,

Trish  =  )