Wednesday, September 7, 2011

The Greatest Man I Ever Knew....

Growing up I didn't have the traditional Mother/Father madly in love and united type of family. My Mom was definitely around, more of a best friend than a Mom. She has always been there for me but in my raisings, I shared my time with her and my Mima and Pappy. My Mima passed away 5 years ago and I still have a hard time with that occasionally. She was a wonderful woman and I miss her dearly.

When my Mima passed away, it opened up a great avenue for me to extend my relationship with my Pappy. My Pappy and I always had a good relationship, but often my Mima was the mediator between us two. If I'd call home from college, I'd talk to her and have her relay messages to him. Occasionally she'd make me talk to him so he didn't get his feelings hurt. I'm glad she did this.

Although I was always close with Pappy, our relationship really took off when she passed away. I would call him every day for a year, I was terrified of losing him too. I finally made myself call him every other day and eventually got into a natural routine of when I'd call. We never went more than 3 days without talking though. When he decided to sell the house I grew up in, the only house they had ever had in Oklahoma, that was hard. I have so many fond memories of that house. He moved into a retirement center where he could still have his little dog Gina, he had his car to come and go, and most importantly he still had his independence.

Back in December of 2010, he got pneumonia. That pneumonia has since led to many hospitalizations, weakness, lapses in memory, and a loss of independence. It has been awful to watch him age so quickly in an 8 month period. I remember when he was so sick in December I wanted him to meet Ainslee so bad, to hold her. I had to get the picture of him holding her for the first time. He was too sick to remember her in December. I took her back up to see him at the end of January, just 2 weeks before she passed away and he finally got to hold her. I remembered thinking I had to get her to meet him before he passed away. Little did I know, she would be the one to pass away. Makes me sick.

My Pappy is now wheelchair bound, has to have constant assistance, has lost independence, no longer makes his decisions, and has various memory lapses. Due to his changed state of health, he is no longer able to go back to his retirement center. Due to limited options with his dog Gina, his medicaid, his desire for a private room, and many other issues, the family has decided to move him closer to one of my aunts where she can keep his dog and he will be in a private facility so she can take the dog to see him every day. He says he doesn't want to leave Lawton, but he also does not want to be away from Gina. Seems like a tricky difficult situation. I just feel sorry for him. I feel so sad that he didn't get his wish to die in his sleep in Lawton.

So, tomorrow morning at 4 in the morning, my 2 aunts are transporting him and Gina down to San Antonio. They have to be there by 1 in the afternoon to allow the doctor to access Pappy. I know he's going to be confused, I know he's going to be sad. He's leaving the town he's been in for nearly 35 years. He's leaving his friends that come and visit him on a regular basis. He's leaving the church family he's known. He's leaving his home. And with that, he's left his independence.

He is by far the most wonderful man, has a very kind heart. He has been the man I look up to, the man I go to for advice, the person I count on. He is by far the greatest man I ever knew.

I love you Pappy!


1 comment:

  1. I am sorry your Pappy is facing some hard changes in life. I will pray for comfort for him during this time. I hope all is going smoothly for Adrian at school too. :)