Foreword: Not a self pity post. (I hate the fact that I have to say this.)
Nearly two and a half years ago I lost my father to cancer. As you can imagine this was a very traumatic event but what made it worse for me was that my father and I hadn’t become close until later in our lives and that was cut short. Watching my father waste away over a period of five to six days was horrible. It opened a very deep wound inside my soul knowing that my dad would not be there for me anymore to share in laughter and sadness.
At this point I finished my first novel, Faith & The Undead and took care of my Mom who was not familiar with taking care of herself. My Dad had done that for her and unfortunately masked much of the dementia that my mother was experiencing.
Not much later my wife and I split making me a single father of an adorable baby girl who I love very much. Through out everything she has always been my shining spot of joy. Without a house I had to find someplace to lay my head and my dear friend Beth LaFond stepped in making that possible. I now had a roof over my head and someplace for my daughter to visit and stay.
But as with anything life struck again. My mother had a fall where she laid on the floor for what we now think was roughly thirty plus hours in her townhouse. She spent nearly two weeks in the hospital and then about three more in rehab. Knowing that she could no longer live on her own my brother, sister, and I made the decision that Mom needed assisted living.
This worked well for a little bit but the dementia/Alzheimer’s struck with a vengeance causing my mother’s body to forget how to chew and swallow food. Doctors weren’t sure what to do and one day a nurse from the assisted living facility called me in tears because he didn’t know what he could do to help. I asked him to call a squad and I’d meet my mother at the ER.
After nearly getting arrested for going after a very stupid (I do NOT use this term lightly) physicians assistant my mother was admitted to the facility where we learned of the Apraxia that had developed in relation to swallowing. With a mother who had very few lucid moments my siblings and I discussed amongst ourselves that options that the doctors provided: a feeding tube or no feeding tube.
We read through my mother’s living will multiple times and worked with the staff in the Palliative Care section of the hospital to determine that my mother did not want the tube. After reaching this conclusion luck would have it that Mom became quite lucid for a day and was able to tell us multiple times that she didn’t want the tube.
Off to hospice we went where it took roughly three weeks for my mother to pass to the other side into my father’s arms. Many times I thought I felt my Dad in the room with us waiting for Mom.
Now I am alone in Columbus, OH. Just me and my daughter. The only blood family I have here. I’m close to my two siblings but they live down south and we just don’t get to see each other as often as we’d like.
Through all this I quit blogging (mostly), quit my podcast (completely) and haven’t written a damn thing. I have so many wonderful stories started that now collect dust on my desk. I wish I could finish them because I want to share them with you so much.
I guess this turned out to be more of a factual confession that I expected but for those of you that didn’t know what was going on or where I disappeared to, you now do.
Severe the head or destroy the brain!!!!