wednesday will still continue being a part of the week, but this story ends today.
if you’ve missed any of the previous postings and want to start from the beginning, you can click on the list over to the right or click here for the beginning.
as you can tell, the story has a little more to it than what people thought. the experience has taught me so much.
#1. don’t live off of gossip, hear-say and half stories. remember everyone’s story has probably way more to it than you can imagine, another viewpoint and a little more depth. don’t be one of those petty people that just passes on bad news. i learned this from the hurt i felt from one comment from one pretty insignificant person. thank you. i now know how not to act. that goes for your feelings on cancer, old people and divorce. just because everyone goes through it doesn’t lessen the blow. it’s still painful.
#2. be open to peace. i once asked my mom how she could forgive karen. how unusual of a reaction that was. she told me “i prayed for peace and God gave it to me”. i don’t understand – what does that have to do with anything? “because of what we went through with dad dying, i just wanted peace and i felt like i could go be bitter and angry and making matters worse or forgive.”
#3. everyone, everyone has a story. and we liked karen’s. we all love karen like she was a part of our family. in fact, my mom and karen are very, very close. they both built houses in a retirement community (hello, swank, i might add!) and travel together and attend family functions together. they don’t advertise their background to everyone and consider it funny because they both have the same last name and people always say “are you SURE you’re not related?” i would love to hear karen and mom’s story together.
#4. ask for forgiveness. you might just get it and a new best friend after all.
#5. remember the little stuff every day. it will stay with you for the rest of your life. when someone has such a profound impact on your life – it is hard wrapping your mind around not “doing life” with them any more. i can still remember holding my grandma’s hands and feeling the softness of the tips of her fingers and the ridges around her knuckles. i can still remember my dad’s hands big and strong and then weak and painful. i can feel it like they were both right here with me now. thank god i got 9 months with my dad. to laugh, to cry, to allow him to say “i’m sorry” . i feel more blessed because of the situation than to have gone on life hating karen and my dad and feeling sorry for my family.
i end this story with one more very private admission. well, when i drove to whole foods with my mom and found out dad had died and we were racing back down lemmon avenue – the same road i was on when i found out dad was sick – my vision turned technicolor. it was so bright i could barely see. the green grass was florescent, the sun bright yellow. i wasn’t dreaming this, it happened. it was a feeling of comfort and peace like i’ve never felt before. i know dad is in good hands.
i finish this story with this picture.
if i had to pick one picture of my dad and i … this wouldn’t be it. but it is a close second. this is my dad real proud of me. is there anything quite like the feeling of your dad being proud of you? there are certainly substitutions, especially if your dad is an a-hole. but for me, this was what it was all about. here, in my ugly 90’s outfit (must have been about 22) and bangs.
thank you for letting me share my story. And thank you to mom & karen for letting me. i love you.