I go to bed late. I wake up early.
I spend much of the day on the phone with various family members. And at various times throughout the day, I will erupt in to a fit of uncontrollable tears. When I took the children to gymnastics yesterday, I realized only after I had arrived that I was wearing the same pants and shirt that I'd worn for the past two days, I had completely forgotten to brush my hair or teeth. My face was puffy, my eyes were red. I was a walking definition of the phrase, "Gone to hell in a hand basket."
I am posting here what I wrote to my family not because I want to air (more) dirty laundry. But because life is short. If you see yourself in any of what I have written about my own family, make amends and move on. And if you are someone who doesn't think family is important, go spend some time looking at this blog and prepare to be inspired.
According to Frank, Dad's doctor thinks that he is going to be in the hospital for a bit longer before being discharged to a physical therapy facility. From there and depending upon Dad's progress he will either be released home or to a nursing facility. I hope that Dad is allowed to return home. I truly believe that home is where he needs to be, even if we need to bring in aides or nurses. And although it might not be popular with all of you, I believe that Dad needs and wants to be with Mary. He genuinely cares about her. Some may disagree, but I think that she has been good for him. Or at least, good TO him.
From what everyone has been telling me, I am preparing myself for the worst. I am sad that this might have been the last Christmas that Dad is with us. I really hope that isn't the case, but as quickly as he has purportedly gone down hill and from the message that Frank played from Dad's doctor, I suspect that unless Dad really is able to turn this situation around, it might be over for him soon. It breaks my heart to write that. But with that being said, I think that as a family, we need to pull together.
We need to put aside our own "issues" that we have with each other and come together the way a family is supposed to be together. Especially, when we are on the verge of losing one of our parents.
LIFE IS SHORT.
We've all got baggage. Any one of us can run down a laundry list of what our siblings have done to wrong us. Any one of us can find fault with any one else. But if we are being perfectly honest with ourselves, we know that we haven't been perfect.
WE'VE ALL MADE MISTAKES.
We've all done things that are wrong and perhaps, downright unethical and shitty. But of course, any one of us can rationalize why we shouldn't speak with one of our siblings for the rest of our lives. Because THEY did this. And then? They SAID this.
Try as you might - you don't ever lose your family.
Nobody is at fault for what has happened and is happening with Dad. All of us have been hurt. All of us have scars. Why create more?
As far as I'm concerned, Beth has been a savior to this family. Sure, Beth has made mistakes. But she is a tiger and her heart has ALWAYS been in the right place and I don't want to hear anyone curse her or put her down in front of me. Not a single person has done as much GOOD for this family as Beth. And if you don't agree with that, than I'll say that no one has done as much good for ME as my sister Beth. She has done so much for everyone of us, and if you don't see it - you're not looking.
It's no coincidence I named our first born daughter after her.
I love her and I would do anything for her.
I just looked out my window and a five-gallon tree that I planted a few years ago is now over 30 feet tall. Look around and you will see, TIME GOES FAST. Janet and Marylou are both grandmothers. Mary T is heading off to college soon. Our babies are growing up.
God forbid one of us loses a spouse. Or a child. The day will come when Mom and Dad will be gone. The day will come when one and then another and another of us will be gone. It could happen at any moment. But today, we're still all here.
Please stop pointing fingers.
Please don't insult one another.
Please don't ignore one another.
Please have some respect for each other.
Please stop gossiping.
Please leave the past IN THE PAST.
Please don't dredge up crap that happened 20 years ago.
Please let the bitterness and anger and hatred end.
Please don't let our father leave this world while his children are in yet another emblazoned battle. Please, let's make Mom AND Dad proud for the kind, gentle and compassionate children that they created. You have it in you to be good. And if not, FAKE IT. Please, be a good role model and make your own children proud. How would you feel if they showed such hatred against each other as we have??
Please, from your little sister ... GROW UP.
I love all of you. (Even if I haven't spoken with you in five years.)