Sunday, March 28, 2010

Together Alone

It's amazing that dad is still hanging on. His nurse has told us more than once that when the hospice staff gathers for their morning meetings to brief each other on the status of their patients, they are increasingly surprised that dad is still with us. Each morning they come in fully expecting to hear the news, and each morning it doesn't come.

It's also amazing to me that for 11 days I have been in a house with no fewer than 6-7 people in it, and I still feel alone sometimes. B obviously hasn't been able to be with me every moment, life (and work) still goes on. The boys of course had school and activities to be in, so they aren't here all the time--and let's be real, even when they are here, they are living it up with their cousins. Spring break has started, they're here more, perhaps it will help?

I'm feeling alone even with my sisters here. We aren't close. We haven't been since my kids were wee ones. Typically, I'm ok with that. We have different interests, different priorities, lifestyles, outlooks, political views, opposing religious ideas...I mean really we have very little in common, so we tend to butt heads. Usually--not an issue. But given the fact that they are also here as much as I has caused me to feel very lonely. Have I mentioned that they are close to each other? Because they are. Yep, heightened loneliness.

Of course, we have Ian (Jacobi's significant other) who is an absolute doll. He has also been supportive, and caring for all of us. He is quick with a gentle word, generous in his errands, kind enough to give supportive touch...he's been awesome. He was here last weekend, returned to the cities for work over the week, but is back now thru Wed. Mark (my former brother in law) has been a huge presence the last week as well. He works as an electrician, and was just laid off on Monday. So after being with us last weekend, he returned for work 1 day and was back with us the next. God's work? I think so! He has been an amazing support for my older sister, and is keeping the kids occupied as well. Both men have been instrumental for my sisters I am certain. I thank God for that.

Gratefully we have been able to put our differences aside and work together as a team during this time. However, dad doesn't need meds or attention 24 hours a day, so we experience ALOT of down time...and that's where the loneliness sets in. They tend to find themselves in places where I am not. I end up by myself pretty frequently in a 24 hour period. I'm thinking of making up TEAM JODIE shirts...anyone want one?

My family and I took a much needed break yesterday. We left in the late morning just to go home where I was able to do some cleaning, give attention to our cats, vacuum our kitchen and run the dishwasher, the boys straightened their rooms, and we just spent some time at home. Later the boys went to the Robelia's to hang out while B and I had some alone time. Away from dad, away from the boys, and just out in the world. Afterward, I went to a movie with some girlfriends. Quite the debbie downer movie, not at all the chick flick Juli thought it would be...but I am grateful that she asked me to go, it was exactly the kind of normal thing I needed. Following the movie was pizza and cocktails at the Robelia's. Why am I telling you all this? I don't know. Mostly because that used to be a common occurrence for our family, but lately, I have been so mentally and physically absorbed here, everything we did yesterday was so far out of my mind's eye, that it wasn't until I was doing those things that I realized I had been missing them. It felt so good to be in the presence of people who love me for me. People who don't judge me for my words, or actions, people who get me. No expectations, no snide comments, just take me for who I am. It's been so long that I've been in that company, and it was exactly what I needed before coming back to dad's house today. Back into the Lion's den.

We went to church this morning too. Palm Sunday service. It was beautiful. Christian talked later about Pastor Shelly's homily-- he really got something out of it! I want to post about it later, because it really shed light for me, and helped sort out some of my life's perspective...but in a biblical sense. It confirmed for me many of the things I think about on a daily basis, and helped me to recommit to the way I live my life. And whats more--Christian loved it too! Awesome! The music was stunning as well. All in all it was a fantastic 24 hours. And now my sweet (and sometimes cranky) B has tomorrow off, so we can have the whole day together as a family--at dad's.

Praise God for the sun. Praise God for people who love me for being me. Praise God for my family. Praise God for my sisters, and may He also bring them closer to Him, that they may find forgiveness, humility and trust, for all who come into their lives. I pray that for them. I pray that for me.

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