Saturday, March 22, 2008

An Unlikely Allie

Things went well on our visit. Curt was well-behaved. We came home with the afore-mentioned television and computer as well as new clothes for Curt and a ton of educational computer games, which are now Curt's reason for living.

My mother and had no "moments." We are close. However, she is just about the most anal person I know and sometimes, our personalities clash. If I say I will be there at 11:30 and I arrive at 11:40, it's bad. She, of course, arrived 15 minutes early and is irritated that I've kept her waiting 25 minutes!(?) When I told her it took one hour, 40 minutes to travel from her house to mine, she later told me it was actually 1:51 (yes, she timed it).

My dad has become an unlikely allie for me the past few years. Growing up, I was definitely a Daddy's girl. That all changed when I became a teenager. My hormones made it impossible for him to joke with me (his preferred form of communication) which tested what little patience he possessed. From the time I was 14 until about 23, we had a very strained relationship.

When I was 25, my grandmother -- his mother -- died. This changed everything. She was the backbone of our family. "Honey" was of utmost important to him and to me. At the end of the grave site services, I looked up through my own tears and saw my father crying. I had never seen this before. I had to go to him. My mother tried to hold me back, but -- in rare fashion for me -- I wouldn't listen to her advice on social graces. I ran to him, hugged him, and told him, repeatedly, "I love you." He returned the favor. We hadn't said that to each other, meaningfully, in probably 20 years.

Things changed. We were gentler with each other. Then, in 1999, my brother called. Heart attack. Emergency quadruple bypass. The family standing at his side with him on the table, a sheet covering him. They called us in before surgery so we would have a chance to say good-bye in case he didn't make it. I held it together until I left the room, when I walked down the hall, rounded the corner, and fell into a heap on the floor. My brother physically lifted me up and told me I had to get it together for my mom. I did.

He made it. It was a long recovery, he looked and felt bad. Today, he looks and feels great.

My mom used to run interference between us; the roles have now reversed. It's funny how things turn out.

With this entry, I realize there is so much I want to say. In due time.

2 comments:

Coyote Bebop said...

Beautiful.

Ange (formerly Writer Mom) said...

I meant to leave a comment, then didn't. Sorry about that.

What Coyote said.