Thursday night my father died. We were so stunned and exhausted that we came home, had a drink and went to bed. It took us a long time to go to sleep. I know this because I slept with my mom that night. Neither one of us wanted to sleep by ourselves.
Friday we woke up, and the sun was still shining, and my father was still dead. I made pea soup, called my husband, researched how to submit obituaries and managed not to die of sadness.
Saturday I woke up, and the sun was still shining, and my father was still dead. It helped to know that my husband was coming in Saturday night. My brother’s girlfriend is amazing. She was (and is) so helpful. She was at the hospital all afternoon on Thursday, brought sandwiches, and helped advocate for my father. She drove down to Boston and picked up my husband from the Boston airport at 11:30 PM and then drove 2 hours north to our home.
I have felt so supported by my family and friends, people sending food and calling. Many of my friends emailed me such wonderful things. One friend tried to move heaven and earth to get food and flowers delivered to my remote home. Another went through my closet finding clothes I asked to be sent to the States with Bülent. The last few days have been extremely difficult, but with the help of friends and family it has been, maybe not less painful, but a more supported journey.
Born 1943-Died January 19, 2012 after a long and valiant battle with cancer.
Dan was a complex person, passionate about life and his family. He had a raucous sense of humor and a quick wit—he filled our lives with warmth and mirth. He fought for the best he could provide, for our family and our community. As a man of conviction, he may have butted heads with others along the way, but never let that get in the way of his integrity and honor. Despite the many hardships he’s encountered, he’s always been an adamant optimist. I think there are few people who could survive what he had and still be able to say that.
He was a fighter, when he was first diagnosed with cancer 15 years ago, he fought with a vengeance. I remember him telling me he just couldn’t leave when we were so little. I am grateful to him for that, that though I still feel “little,” I am now an adult who knows my own mind and heart, largely due to him.
He had a presence so huge that it is hard to imagine a world without him. I am grateful for every moment I had with him, and every memory I have for the future.
I have been back in NH for eight days. I have missed being here. Though it has not been my normal visit. It has been different this time around. There is an underlying sadness. Not grief or depression, but a melancholy that surrounds us all. When know why, and it is not ignored, but neither is it discussed.
It has a busy week. I flew in on Monday to NYC. I had to reroute because I missed my flight due to a delay. Tuesday I hung out with my aunt and darling cousin, and shopped. Then I spent a week with my dad dad at the hospital.
Tonight is my third night at my parents home, though both my mom and dad are at the hospital. Tomorrow my dad is having surgery. Wish us all luck.