Thursday, September 23, 2010


Our dad passed away on Tuesday afternoon. He was 93 years old and very ill with cancer and Parkinson’s. At the end, his world had become very narrow—a room with Mom at an assisted living facility. He counted on visitors to bring the world to him.

He had always been the man in charge, the guy in control. He’d say “jump,” and his kids would only stop long enough to ask, “Is this high enough, Dad?” But we didn’t jump out of fear. We just wanted him to approve. Even as adults, I think we would all ask ourselves, “What would Dad think of what I’m doing right now?” Even if we grumbled a bit under his eagle eye, we never wanted to disappoint him. We always wanted to live up to his expectations of us.

So a new paradigm: life without father. As ill as he was in his final years, as confined as he was to his wheelchair, he never lost his position of head of the family. Until the day he died, he was the man in charge, the man who set the bar high for himself and those around him, and the father we loved


Anonymous said...

Amen!! Grandma Nettie--also known as "Windstorm" by her loving father. We will miss the man he was.

Elaine said...

Your dad was a great man.

Anonymous said...

Thinking of you Rachel.

bn said...

My deepest sympathy and prayers to you and your family! Your father must have been an amazing man! He is still watching over you with love and approval!

Dana @ Bungalow'56 said...

I'm so sorry this was the cause of your paradigm shift. I often try to imagine life without my parents. It is the only reality I have ever known. When my grandfather and Oma died they to suffered terribly, and it was such a relief to know they were no longer in pain. A bittersweet relief. I will be thinking of you.
Take care,

Jenny said...

I'm so sorry your loss! I will dearly miss your posted conversations with him. Isn't it great that you have a blog where you've preserved some of that story-telling?