Wow it's been a while. I've written a million blog posts in my head, I just couldn't seem to get myself to put it down in print. This has been a rough year, to say the least, but it is not without it's shining moments. I've changed so much, I barely recognize myself. I have further closed in my circle of people I associate with and that helps me maintain a positive outlook. Bless those I call my friends and even more the ones that are my family.
I hear/see on social media so many people whine about losing a parent. I get it. But watching my dad lose his partner is a million times harder than losing a parent. I'm not belittling anyone's grief or feelings, so don't get me wrong. I'm just expressing what I see. He is lost without my mom. Truly lost. It's not what I anticipated. I thought my dad would feel relief. Relief at not having to care for her 24/7 as he had the last year of her life. I was there for 2 weeks last summer and 2 weeks in February at the end and it was a lot. My mom's personality also held my dad back in a lot of ways through life. I thought he'd feel a little free. That is not the case at all. He misses her desperately. 61 years of constant togetherness I guess makes for that kind of attachment.
I've always loved my daddy. When I was a child of course it was my mother whom I wanted, needed to comfort me - to kiss the boo boos. But once I hit adulthood, it was my dad. As the years went on he understood me and how to "deal" with me better than my mom. He always knows what to say to make it better. I've always felt safe and protected in my life because I know I can always count on my dad to make things right. So, this period of time when he was looking at me (and my siblings) to make it right for him was unsettling. He seemed to want us to take care of him, which we have done, no questions asked. I love taking care of people. When I was down in Florida in July I took care of him while he was recovering from minor eye surgery. I felt so happy to be able to take care of him and for him to let me. Seeing him in that fragile state was a little unnerving. He was looking at me to make it better. It seemed only right, since he's done it for me for the last 50 years. I supposed at some point a person gets tired. He was always so strong and commanding because my mom allowed him to be "the man". Allowed him to take care of her and everything else. I never realized how much my mom did that took care of him. She cooked, she cleaned, she ironed, she washed and dried and put his clothes away. They were truly a well oiled machine. Both doing what was needed to make the partnership work. I want that. Does anyone have that anymore? I hear so many women say "I can do it myself, I don't need a man!" Obviously we can do it ourselves-DUH- but why not allow them the gift of taking care of us, as we do them?
My son is 17. His girlfriend is his queen. He truly worships her. He wants nothing more than to take care of her and spoil her. Yesterday we sat together designing gifts for her birthday and their anniversary and he proudly gave me his debit card to place the order. He said "I just love doing things for her". My God, have I helped this next generation bring back chivalry by raising such a son? I certainly hope so! Back in May I was in New York for my Godson's wedding. That wedding gave me hope and faith in true love and the commitment of it. Their's is a love story begging to be told! They met in middle school and have been together ever since. He said his purpose in life is to make his wife happy. He credits my father/his grandfather for teaching him how to treasure a woman. There is hope.
I don't even know where I'm going with this. I suppose it was about my dad losing his partner and I am all over the map. So be it. I've done a lot of studying about relationships and what makes them tick in the past year. I've realized my mistakes in the past and am determined not to repeat them in the future. The difference between me and my mother and my new niece and son's girlfriend? I was hell bent on making life easier for the men in my life. Determined not to have them have an ounce of stress if I could help it. I was not aware of how men tick. How men don't want to be babied, they want to be acknowledged. This is something I'm practicing with my sons now. I allow them to help me. I allow them to do nice things for me. Damn, that was hard for me. But so worth it. I see how happy it makes them to take some of the burden from my shoulders and how proud they are when I praise them. Who knew?
I've come to a point in life where I can't stomach hearing women bash men. That used to be my favorite past time! But when I hear "men suck" or "why should I do that when they are so selfish" or the endless stream of negative man bashing quotes my stomach turns. These women are partly responsible for the demise of the love relationship. I, myself, have been guilty of it. I took control of everything in the past, allowing my insecurities about my own abilities and purpose to overshadow anything else. In the past I was not a gracious receiver. I will not make that mistake again. I was also very critical, to say the least, choosing to pick out the one wrong thing instead of praising the 20 good ones. I will not make that mistake again.
So this is my babbling post I suppose....but you know it's just a day in the life :)