I had one of "those" days today. It's been an overwhelming month. I am still trying to readjust to west coast time, my mom had knee replacement surgery this past Friday, and my uncle passed away yesterday.
Needless to say, it all caught up to me last night. I was up until 3 a.m. this morning. I couldn't sleep. I lied there in the dark, looking at the ceiling, trying to grasp what it means when someone isn't alive any more. It's weird. They just aren't there.
I spent the night trying to wrap my brain around it all. My dad died two years ago, my grandfather died a year ago, and one year and 5 months later my uncle dies. My grandmother says, "things happen in threes". Surprise, surprise. I hope she is right, because if things happen in fours, I don't want to know who's next.
Anyways, you'd be surprised to know, I've been lucky I think. The last time I left each person, some of the best memories were created.
The last time I saw my dad, he helped me pack the U-Haul for Seattle. We spent the day together, just him and I. We raced to see who could get a 50 lbs box of records from one end of the street to the other the fastest. I won of course. He dropped my black Ikea sofa over the balcony from the second story, and I caught it downstairs, nearly breaking my back. And we sat on the floor of my empty apartment, and ate pizza before I saw him wave goodbye for the last time.
With my grandfather, TJ and I had spent the night at my grandparent’s house. When we were about to leave to go to the Raiders football game, my grandfather called me in to his bedroom. I looked at him tucked under the covers, as he held my hand and told me that I had "come full circle" and that "I was doing alright".
And with my uncle, I saw him just last week. I hadn't seen him in over a year, since my grandfather's funeral actually. I was in San Francisco to see my mom and for a job interview, and so I stopped by the hospital. I had a brief 10 minutes with him, but I think it was the first time in my life he was ever glad to see me. And though he couldn't speak, he said more to me in those ten minutes than he has in the entire time I have known him.
Anyways, point being, I’ve learned the value of leaving things right with people. Other family member’s final moments weren’t so good. I live once and I never know the last time I will see someone. My dad was 58, my grandfather 89, and Kirk was 63 (I believe). I am eternally grateful that things ended well for me with each person. I can find peace at night when I rest my head. And, I can hang on to the good memories.
One last thing... When I hung up the phone with my mom last night, TJ (my husband) turned his head and said to me, "I love you, and I will probably never say that enough."
A good memory.