December 21, 2009 – THANK YOU, I’LL BE HERE ALL WEEK!

12/21/2009

(REAL-TIME ENTRY)

Yesterday, I was told, Dad slept a L-O-T.  I mean, some of our friends helping out with hours-long shifts at the house said they never even interacted with him because he was always asleep.  It’s days like that when you get worried about him and miss him.

Well… today, Dad was totally ON!  He never dozed off once, never took his midday nap, and was still going strong when I left at 8pm!  There was a constant stream of friends and family members in and out of the house all day, and Dad seemed to know who most everyone was almost all the time.  (Of course, there were still moments, like when his brother Al commented that they had the SAME mother, that totally blew my dad’s mind! 🙂

But today I didn’t just spend the day with my dad… HE spent the day with ME.  He noticeably called me by name: Joleen, Jo, Bubba (one of our nicknames).  It was SO EXCITING to have him back and to playfully interact back and forth!!!

At noon, I accompanied Mom and Dad to Dad’s haircut in Farmington with his long-time friend and barber, Joe.  Joe has been cutting my dad’s hair since 1972. That’s 1972!!  Today, I went as a Peeping Tom with my camera, wanting to capture their camaraderie and peek into yet one more friendship in my dad’s special world.  (Plus, I have a feeling that this may have been Dad’s last haircut with Joe since barber services are offered at the nursing home).  I could instantly tell that their monthly ritual was familiar and comforting to both of them, and I found the exchange between them touching and beautiful.  I mean, really, this is a 40-year-long ritual they’ve had together throughout my entire life

Joe made my dad feel so comfortable and I could tell that Dad was at peace, having fun and highly enjoying his visit with Joe.  I mean, Dad couldn’t find his way around the barber shop to give me a tour – he even tried to walk me into the cellar closet once – but he knew his buddy, and he knew that chair, and he knew this was a day to be treasured.

When it was over, I cried in the car while driving away from the barber shop.  What I had witnessed there was just so beautiful.  It brought to mind the final scene of Driving Miss Daisy.

And then my dad went on to have such a WIDE AWAKE, INTERACTIVE day!  He was constantly up, playfully rambunctious, F-U-N-N-Y as all get out, and my heart skipped a beat when I saw that sparkle back in his beautiful blue eyes!!  It’s amazing but his humor is completely in tact and his timing is still perfect.  I mean, he even rolls his eyes at the exact perfect moment while delivering a sarcastic line.  Granted, his comebacks don’t necessarily pertain literally to the current conversation at hand, but they make sense in that you know exactly what he intended for them to mean.  I tell you, MY DAD IS F-U-N-N-Y!!! 

Now, as I’m preparing myself to go to sleep for the night, I can’t help but look back on this truly magical day as if it was an early one-time-only Christmas present where I truly was given my dad back.  It was SUCH A JOY to interact with him and play his silly games and retell our silly jokes and crack each other up!  WHAT A GIFT TODAY WAS!  It will truly be in my heart forever.

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2 Responses to “December 21, 2009 – THANK YOU, I’LL BE HERE ALL WEEK!”

  1. Karrie said

    Yeah!!! 🙂 I’m so happy for you! Leave it to him to deliver the world’s best Christmas present! ….back in the day, it would have been wrapped and coded by his Goddaughter! 😉 Merry Christmas!

    • Yea, you were definitely his “gift wrapping” savior come the holidays every year! I guess those times are long gone, as is his gentlemanly gesture of doing the dishes after every holiday. This Thanksgiving was the first holiday ever in his adult life that he didn’t even think to offer to do all the dishes after dinner for the ladies! Traditions are beautiful things.

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