death after life ; life after death

My sister started this blog for me in September because she said I had become a recluse and isolated caring for my father for the previous five years. I thought that by now I would have adjusted to him being gone. He passed from this world to the next on January 5 of this year. Lately he has been constantly on my mind. Things that are said or situations that arise, not to mention the hawk that appears every time I go outside now, brings laughter mixed with tears. This was the second post on my blog and I really am just as clueless now as I was then.

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Watching the curtain close on the life of a loved one can bring a bizarre mix of emotions.You wonder about the life being lost and the life left behind. In my case it is my father. He has battled Parkinson’s Disease (PD) for twenty-six years that we know of and longer I’m sure before diagnosis. Now at eighty-three his days are short since sleep seems to occupy the majority of his time. I wonder if this is how it will end for him ? Will he just not wake up one day ? Will he choose to stay in bed instead of moving to his favorite chair or sitting in the sun in the yard ? That would be a blessing I guess . There are so many alternatives that could be much worse

I sleep in the same room with him and some of the best memories I will have will be role playing different characters for him in his dreams. He has very vivid and vocal dreams and I never know who I will be or what adventure we will be undertaking. I have been one of his brothers cruising the streets in younger days. He has even told me to move over so he can drive because I wasn’t going fast enough. I have been one of his buddies on the golf coarse getting teased about my sorry drive. I have been a soldier , a customer , an employee and a son .

Sometimes when I tuck him in and kiss him good night I wonder. Have you done everything with your life that you wanted to do ? Have you had a good life ? I know that it started in poverty and you worked and were successful but are you content and are you ready to let go and move forward to receive your much deserved peace and reward ?

And am I ready ? He has been like my child for the last five years. I have fed him , dressed him , bathed him , changed his soiled clothes , helped him walk and picked him up when he fell . When the time comes for him to go , who and what will I be ? He is the reason for me to stay alive right now and I know that there will be more than just a void when he is gone . There will be an identity crisis that I am trying to prepare for but I really don’t know how. I will no longer be my fathers care giver. I will be a fifty-five year old man with no verifiable work history for the past five to seven years . Prospects are not looking good .

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21 Responses to death after life ; life after death

  1. Judy Kitchens says:

    Eddie you are a beautiful crafstman of your thoughts and words. The work you have done for the past five years is of the utmost importance, giving your mom, dad, and entire family peace of mind and allowing your parents to remain together in their home. I am remembering to pray for you to be blessed, have peace and joy, and find your new calling in the right time. Perhaps it is writing? I love you cuz!

  2. Thank you so much for the prayers. The power of prayer is truly an awesome force. One of the forgotten and least acknowledged concerns of an end of life care giver is the fact that it is a temporary position. At some point your services will no longer be needed. For a professional that is not a variable but for a family member it is a real life concern.It is not something you wish to have a conversation about because it seems selfish but the reality is overwhelming. I love you too!

  3. I feel like I’m intruding to comment on this. Lovely writing and such gentle images and story telling about a difficult thing – yet you’re not overly sentimental. So nice. Thanks much for stopping by my blog.

  4. kayga48 says:

    I think you are doing something wonderful Ed and I think, like Judy, that you have a real gift for writing. I am so proud of you and maybe you have found yourself here.

  5. Harris Lurey says:

    no one is really sure what will happen during life after death…

    Look at all of the most up to date write-up at our blog page
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    • This is true.But this I know.When my father died last week I was sitting by his side holding his hand.At the moment of his death the most gentle beautiful smile filled his face. I don’t know what he saw but it pleased him deeply. read my post” One Last Time ” for an account of that wonderful moment.Also I tried to got to your link but was unable to connect.Sorry!

  6. terry1954 says:

    I have a question for you. I find that many tell me to smile and be happy. Sometimes I get so angry at these request because my heart is hurting. It has always been difficult for me to pretend something other than what I am feeling. The top part of your post I found myself relating to. I see the crows flying around outside and i wonder if they are for Al or for my next door neighbor. I walk into my brother’s room and I will end up crying for a loss that hasn’t happened as I look around and see him everywhere. I sometimes don’t know what to do. It is easier to be numb. Do I continue to live how I feel or do I pretend all is well and make everyone happy

    • The only time to pretend, Terry,is when you are with Al. I actually grieved more when Daddy was alive because I witnessed the deterioration of this great athlete every day. His passing was a beautiful thing to behold but I find myself missing him more every day. You have an advantage though. Daddy was 24hr care. That was my entire life. Take some time now to build a life Terry outside of Al.That doesn’t mean you will be giving Al less.of yourself. You will probably be giving him more. Find something that will give you satisfaction like volunteering somewhere or whatever fits for you. I am cobbled still while I am taking care of my mother. But when my life becomes mine I will truly be lost..

      • terry1954 says:

        Al is coming home very soon. I see what you are saying to take the time for me, but I don’t know what to do since he can come home at any time. I received the official letter saying he will be here, so everything is on hold for me. He is going to be 24/7 once he gets here as he is wheelchair b ound

      • terry1954 says:

        sometimes i think a lot of my problem is i am still grieving and missing my dad more today than ever. i bet you understand this too………………..we can’t go back and change it but on the other hand i can’t pretend i am always ok

      • Yes I certainly do understand. Just try and be strong in front of Al. Because I know he loves you and to see you upset will only upset him. I won’t tell you to try and fake it outside of Als presence. People have know idea what you are going through and if they are true friends then they will give you a shoulder and a hug but no advice.

      • terry1954 says:

        I have only shown tears once i think in front of Al and that was the other day when he begged me to take him home with me. thank u for understanding my friend, thank you

  7. This is such an emotionally filled post that I can only say with a lump in my throat and tears in my eyes God Bless you for all you did and are doing. I have lost all parents and grandparents uncles and aunts, only far away (miles and emotionally)siblings and 2 aunts left of my family I don’t know how you cope, I am assumimg it is by the grace and mercy of God. God be kind to this young man and provide all his needs abundantly in Jesus name I pray~~Amen!

    • Miss Len thank you so much for the prayer. That IS the only way I make it through and I do know that. I consider myself very lucky to have had my parents so long. I’m 54…I think. I am sorry you have lost your parents but if they were in any way as strong in their faith and character as you are then you know they wouldn’t come back here for anything in the world. I expect as time goes by I will miss him less. I guess really it has only been a little over 90 days. It just seems I think of him all the time. I guess I knew this was going to be difficult.

  8. Sometimes I don’t have words to express how beautiful yours are.

  9. kim sargent says:

    WOW!!!❤ such a vivid pic of what you went thru!

  10. I read this 5 years later and I realize two things. First, I miss him just as much today as I did then. Second, once you turn your life over to God everything will be OK. Even in death….everything will be OK.

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