Wednesday, October 25, 2006

Death and family

I'm having a difficult time writing this post -- I don't know what to say and I'm so sad right now. My father-in-law is very sick; he will probably die in the next few days. I love him, yet I've always been so torn about my feelings for him. D and he have not always had the best relationship and I've watched that play out, hurting for D and being angry at his dad. Many years ago, he said something to D about me that was extremely hurtful and over 10 years later it still makes me angry, yet the problem, to D's family, was not what D's father said but instead the problem was that D had told me what his father said.

Right now, though, as he lies in a medically-induced coma, I'm remembering how kind he could be -- the way he is with my children and how much they love him. He always has time for his grandchildren; they truly are the joy of his life. Now I find myself thinking about that aspect of him and how funny he is sometimes -- he has always had a dry sense of humor and not everyone gets that, but I do. And I like that about him. I like his tolerance of other people's beliefs (although I don't think he was always that way.) He and I are on complete opposite ends of the political spectrum and he teases me gently about that. Right now though, the picture in my mind is of him urging my husband on to belly dance in this Polynesian restaurant -- that was the night we met. I was embarrassed and he teased me out of that embarrassment. That's how I want to remember him, and I think I've just written my way to forgiving him for that thing he said so long ago. I love you, Dad.

8 comments:

Hilda said...

I'm sorry about your father-in-law. It is so difficult when someone with whom you have a complicated relationship reaches this point - there are so many conflicting emotions.

I admire your choosing to focus on his qualities rather than his faults. I think that brings you more peace and acceptance.

I'll light my prayer candle for you tonight.

HIlda

Kristina said...

I'm so sorry to hear that you and your family are going through a difficult time. Take care, k?

Robin said...

I'm really sorry your family is going through this, but I'm glad that you're able to see the good in who your father-in-law. He's going to pass while he's surrounded by love.

BabelBabe said...

I am thinking of you. Wishing you all peace.

Katya said...

Thank you guys for your comments. We're still waiting to hear anything -- he improved somewhat yesterday and now they are giving him weeks instead of days. So we are getting ready to drive to West Virginia. I think we should go now; my husband wants to wait but I don't know what we're waiting for.

sari said...

I'm sending my prayers for all of you. I'm glad whatever happens, you're making your peace. That matters.

Have a safe trip!

Lazy cow said...

I never know what to say in these situations. Simply that I'm thinking and praying for you and your family.

Rogue Librarian said...

It always seems all the little and even the big fights seem to fade when you’re faced with the mortality of a loved one. I’ll keep a good thought for your Father in law and the rest of your family.