Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Dad's Last Christmas

As the Yuletide season winds down and begins to fade into memory, I think of another memory from another Christmas: Christmas Past but not too far past — just ten years past.

My dad was in the hospital and not doing well, but Cuppa was determined to bring him home for Christmas. It was also my wish to have him home, just for the afternoon, but my mother was against the idea, so I didn't quite know what to do. Partly, she was afraid of him kicking up a great fuss about going back into the hospital in the evening. And it would also be difficult to have him home, even for a short time, for he couldn't walk anymore, not on his own steam. He could bear some weight but for either mental or physical reasons (I'm still not sure which), he couldn't seem to support himself or at least he couldn't ambulate. Nevertheless, Cuppa's will prevailed, and I'm glad it did, for due to the whole strange scenario (which I'm not going to go into here and now) of how he ended up in the hospital in the first place, I was in a state of perplexed ditherdness in those days.

In short, we got him home, and it went quite well. He had a bit of turkey, plucked up a bit of his old-time humour, even in his demented sate, and I felt a lot better about doing this little thing for him whether he was terribly cognizant or not. I think he enjoyed himself in his own way even though he would have forgotten about it almost immediately.

That was his last Christmas. He slipped very quickly after that day, and a few weeks later he mercifully left both us and his misery behind.

Christmas 1998
Dad's Last Two Photos

9 comments:

Woman in a Window said...

What a nice glance inside your past. I have to say though, I'm greedy, I want more. I'd love to see you spin a story of your father. How he walked, where he carried himself to, how he held a room. These people who are passing us by, it seems I'd just like to hold their stories for a moment to mark their time here and to know just how important they've been.

Happy New Years! (thank you for sharing and I understand if this is all you want to put down. It's a lot, these last photos.)

Donna said...

Memories...it was a Good thing ya'll did. For him And you.
Happy New Year you two!!hughugs

Judy said...

Oh, Anvilcloud.

What precious memories.

Can I borrow your words "perplexed ditherdness"? It describes what I have been feeling exactly.

My mom has been in a nursing home with dementia for two Christmas' now.

She has adjust very well and seems happy, when medicated properly (aren't we all?). I went with my dad to visit her on Christmas day and she was doing great. That is, until I looked over and noticed her playing with what looked like.., no, it could not be.., and it was.., and it is just all too too sad.., it is just SO not her...

Amanda said...

Beautiful Post A/C. Dementia is such a cruel Illness. But even so, i feel that your Father enjoyed himself spending Christmas with all his family.
Have a Happy New Year.
l,
Amanda

Mary said...

AC,

How wonderful that your father was able to enjoy his last Christmas at home with his family. A great tribute to your father.

Happy New Year, my friend. I wish you, Cuppa and your family abundant blessings throughout 2009.

Blessings,
Mary

PBS said...

Christmas time is a good time for memories. Thanks for sharing yours of your Dad. I think our memories make us stronger. Happy New Year to you and your loved ones!

Dale said...

Thanks for sharing, AC. Happy New Year.

KGMom said...

Such a wonderful kindness.
I am convinced that doing such things helps establish a pattern for our own eventual treatment!

simplycol said...

The true meaning of Christmas shines through in this memory. Some things are just right.. aren't they.