Drug testing

Dads, Life, and Death

When he looked at me, it was clear my father wasn't sure who I was. And as I looked back at him, I wasn't sure who he was, either.

My father had just endured two heart surgeries and 6 days in intensive care. He'd returned to the hospital where he'd worked for 40 years. It was the hospital where all his children had been born. And as he sat in his bed gazing at me, I knew he might never be the same. The doctors said that he may have a long period of confusion after the surgeries. And because he's eighty-six, it may be many months before he returns to normal. It's also possible he may never be "normal" again.

The roller coaster of feelings we've had the past week have settled a bit. Now, we simply wait. We wait to see if the memory comes back and the confusion fades. We hope that he regains what he once had, as we realize who he was may be "gone."

It's a realization that feels a lot like death.

To spend two days wondering if your father will live or die brings you many things. It allows you to appreciate every moment of life. It fills you with memories, and it fills you with pain. It reminds you of something that can easily be forgotten as you run around in your busy life: life is incredibly fragile, and can be taken away in an instant.

I sat there in this hospital room, spoon-feeding the man I've seen as powerful and capable my entire life. It felt like the full circle of life had come around us. It was both satisfying and frightening. It felt good to support him, yet part of me wanted to tell him to "be normal" again. I wasn't sure if I was ready to accept the full meaning of it: that my father may never be that powerful and capable person again.

My mother has been married to my father for sixty years. During the darkest time before the second surgery, she said, "You have sixty years with someone, but you just want more."

Pain and suffering have visited my family, as it will visit all families. And while we hesitate to face pain and suffering, it has great lessons to teach us. Pain and suffering are well outside of the boundaries of our everyday life. When it comes, it shatters these boundaries and turns our world upside down. We become a family with all of the others who have known pain and suffering. And we have another chance to prioritize what's truly important in our lives.

This crisis will pass, and we'll all be changed by it. The healing hands of time will do their work. I'm thankful that I've told my father everything I've wanted to say to him. And I'm thankful to have my family to lean on during this difficult time. We'll all be challenged by this to show more support, care, and love.

This is as it should be. Sometimes, it takes a crisis to remind us of why we're all here.

Mark Brandenburg MA, CPCC, coaches busy parents by phone to balance their life and improve their family relationships. For a FREE twenty minute sample session by phone; ebooks, courses, articles, and a FREE newsletter, go to http://www.markbrandenburg.com. or email him at mark@markbrandenburg.com.

limousine chicago service
In The News:

Watching Death

Like it or not, we think in line with our... Read More

When Change Comes (Dealing With Grief and Loss)

Needless to say, the time after loss is volatile and... Read More

Suicide in the Church Part 1

Recently, several suicides have occurred right here in my own... Read More

Do You Know Someone Whos Dying?

Too many people are dying alone?The dying are one of... Read More

Dying? Not Me! Why You Should Plan for Transition

Remember the Eulogy projects we had to write back in... Read More

Dealing With Grief and Loss - How to Mend a Broken Heart

What is it about Grief & Loss that upsets us... Read More

Graceful Grief: Angelic Help is on the Way!

I believe that major change and loss in our lives... Read More

How to Deal with Suicide and Euthenasia

The following is a report that indicates how you might... Read More

Then and Now

Over one hundred years ago, during the Victorian era, death... Read More

When Sorrow Is Too Great to Be Borne Alone, Support Groups Reach Out

Not long after Arlyn died, my husband and I decided... Read More

If Ever It Is Me

With my father, his brother and their father having had... Read More

GoodBye GrandMa

My dearest Grandma, I will never forget you & sorry... Read More

Men and Grief

Men grieve differently from women. Our cultural roles make it... Read More

Lessons We Learned From Terri Schiavo

Let's talk about Terry Schiavo, since her death illustrated for... Read More

Silent Tears - from a Norwegian Hospital

Silent tears hit hospital-white sheets. The young Pakistani mother holds... Read More

Grief Masks

October makes me think of Halloween, and Halloween makes me... Read More

How Can I Transform Tragedy?

There is only one place where tragedy occurs, and that... Read More

Suicide Survivor

Suicide is a nightmare for survivors of loved ones. Death... Read More

Grief & Loss - Healing Your Broken Heart

What is it about Grief & Loss that upsets us... Read More

The Twists and Turns of Life

When I was born in 1962 I thought life was... Read More

Online Memorial ? A Dedication of Love for Your Departed Loved Ones

Life has always been a journey, a journey of finding... Read More

How To Write A Eulogy

Remembering someone special in a personal way can be healing... Read More

How to Deal With A Death in the Family and Still Run Your Small Business

As a small business owner we have to deal with... Read More

How Long Does It Take to Mend a Broken Heart?

Julian Austin, Canadian country singer, released a song called Should... Read More

Suicide in the Church Part 2

In a town the size of mine - about 16,000... Read More

induction grow lights high bay led light Pete's produce ..