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Marilee J. Layman

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10:34 pm: The Shadow of Death
My brother called me last night, saying Dad had pneumonia and is in the hospital and yesterday the Parkinson's made him unable to eat. He has a DNR and the plan was to move him to hospice for weeks, maybe months.

My stepmother just called and said she thinks he'll die tonight -- that he's having trouble breathing -- and that *his* father went into a coma today. It's not a stroke, but they don't know what. Dad's 74 and Gramps is 94 (also with a DNR). I emailed my cousins to find out more, since they're closer.

I haven't seen Gramps in years, but I'll be sad when he's gone. I'm feeling pretty conflicted about Dad. He hurt me physically and emotionally every day I lived with him and emotionally every time I saw him. He repeatedly told me how worthless I was, even up to the last time he called last year. (Girls are worthless -- I was also stupid, ugly, and nobody would ever love me. Women without husbands and babies are particularly worthless.) On the other hand, I've spent the last 21 years expecting to die before he did, so I never really thought about knowing he'd died. There are still some small good memories there, and I disagree with Patrick, even William F. Buckley's death decreases me, so my father's will, too. But I'm more angry right now than sad. I kept waiting for him to change, to think I was a worthwhile person and valuable, and now it looks like he won't.

I told Rick about Giorgio last night and cried about the cat in bed, so, come to think of it, that's probably why I'm off today. Maybe it'll be a few more days of off.

Comments

From:malibrarian
Date:March 5th, 2008 04:25 am (UTC)
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I'm sorry to hear about your father, and especially your grandfather. I wasn't especially close to my father either (although he wasn't nearly as bad as your father) but I still got upset when he died. For better or for worse, he was your father. I hope that things go as well as they can for the next few days.

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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 04:29 am (UTC)
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Thanks, Cathy. Something in a bright pink envelope is on its way to you -- I realized afterward that I should have picked a duller color for grownups!
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From:ritaxis
Date:March 5th, 2008 05:51 am (UTC)
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I think it is the difficult, unresolved relationships that are the hardest to deal with in death. And it's really hard to sever oneself from a parent, even if the parent has repeatedly proven they are worthy of severing from.
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 06:21 am (UTC)
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Yeah. And there are elements of him in me that I've carefully controlled over the years, so we are alike in some ways.
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From:gerisullivan
Date:March 5th, 2008 06:09 am (UTC)
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Full spectrum emotion...and the double whammy of your Gramps and Dad both near their ends. Please treat yourself as gently as possible through these troubled days. The conflicts you're feeling about your Dad are completely natural and understandable, as are your reactions. That doesn't make them or the experience any less overwhelming...or whatever it proves to be.
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 06:22 am (UTC)
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Thanks, Geri. I may have to cancel my nephrologist appointment tomorrow. We'll see.
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From:green_knight
Date:March 5th, 2008 08:04 am (UTC)
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Look after yourself, please.
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 11:03 pm (UTC)
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Thanks. :) I'm more stable today, got good news from the nephrologist.
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From:green_knight
Date:March 6th, 2008 12:10 am (UTC)
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Good news is, well, good news :-)
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From:kip_w
Date:March 5th, 2008 02:27 pm (UTC)
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Sorry for the roiling cloud of emotions that must be surrounding you. Have a cup of tea and watch something silly on TV with the cats.
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 11:04 pm (UTC)
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Guess what came today? The Hogfather DVD! Maybe I will watch it. And tea, tea is always good.
(no subject) - (Anonymous)
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 5th, 2008 11:05 pm (UTC)
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It's not so much that I want/ed a relationship, I just wanted him to admit that I wasn't a pile of junk.
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From:firecat
Date:March 5th, 2008 11:37 pm (UTC)
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I'm sorry there's so much loss in your life right now. You are a wonderful person and it's a shame your dad never saw that. May you be comforted.
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From:mjlayman
Date:March 6th, 2008 12:02 am (UTC)
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Thank you, Stef. :)
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