So many tears. I cry regularly, and at the drop of a hat. Every drive to visit him, and every drive home, I play the memories of him over and over in my mind, trying to retain them and mark them somehow. Sometimes I'm lucky, and he will be in that in-between state of consciousness where he can nod or smile when I talk about memories or what our family is currently doing. Sometimes, he'll look at me and actually SEE me and the hours of crying on the ways there and back are worth it for that moment of clarity where I can say "I love you" and he will smile and kiss me.
I'm so tired of this present stage. I'm so tired of him being here, but not actually BEING here. I want nothing more than more time with my dad, and that is what makes this slow death so painful to witness. I don't WANT him to die, but I don't want him to live like THIS.
I wish so much that I could have one more real moment with him. His last truly lucid moments were agonizing as the pain was so intense that nothing else mattered. Now that the pain is being "managed" with heavy medication, and the cancer is working its way through his brain, it feels like we get to watch him die in a thousand tiny moments...
This is excruciating.
I drove home last night, sobbed at a few stop lights, and screamed several obscenities. If I live long enough, I will have to go through this pain countless times. How many people do I love? Like, really, truly love. Twenty? Thirty? Is this how it will feel each time someone I love passes away? Is it more intense because it is so damn slow and painful? How many times can a person withstand this level of emotions before they crack?
I want my Daddy. I want him to hug me again and call me Ta-ta-wa-ta and make stupid, punny jokes, and tell me where the best sales are at. I want to go to his house with all of his grandkids and listen to them ask for popcorn and ice cream; I want to hear them yell and laugh with excitement over all of the cool ice cream bars he always has. I want to listen to him and Patrick rib each other over their golf scores and marvel that my dad and husband get along so well. I want to see him sitting in his chair on Christmas evening, as all of us are crammed into the living room at their house, presents piled in towers of gleaming colors. I want to take a picture of him taking a picture of me across the room, and know that he is hiding one of his presents under the chair so that he can be the last one to open a present on Christmas day.
This stage really sucks, but I am not ready for the next one. Not really. But I don't have any control over it. It's coming, and I can feel how close it is every time I say goodbye. Soon, I will live in a world that he isn't in, and there isn't anything I can do about it.