Thursday, October 15, 2009

Lazy Death: This Too Shall Pass

My dad died on October 10th, synchronistically the same date that my boyfriend's father died. I thought it might be a sweet little nod from my dad from beyond. My boyfriend, and other friends who have lost their dads are reliving their dad's deaths to one degree or another. But even friends who haven't lost a parent understand my pain. This is one of those life experiences that you really don't have to live through to understand and fully empathize with. I know every time a friend's dad has died -- my entire life -- I have felt their pain on some level because even imagining the world without my dad was so painful.

It's been painful, even though I knew it was coming. As I've said to many friends in the past, "No matter how great your life is going, there is never a good time to lose a parent. You are never really ready for it." I thought I was. About 8 years ago my dad was diagnosed with a fatal lung disease, pulmonary fibrosis. He was given 5 years to live. Four years ago he was diagnosed with lung cancer. He also had emphysema. My dad was such a fighter he lived far beyond what his doctors expected.

I have felt a little like I was cut off at the knees. I've felt wobbly kneed several times since he died, and I've never felt these sensations before. I've never felt so shaken by anything in my life. And, as we say in our book, the phrase I keep repeating, that everyone knows and can recite in times like these: This too shall pass.

I know it will get better. I know I'll have a little more finesse with hearing my dad in my heart. I know I'll adjust to not being able to pick up the phone and call him.

It's not passing's right here in every cell, but it will transform into something different. I hope it transforms into a little glowing, peaceful ball of light inside me that I just get to tap into for joy instead of sadness. That I could look forward to passing into.

We'll see. All I know is it's true: This too shall pass.

Thursday, October 01, 2009

Lazy Aging

I'm dealing with my dad being in the final stage of his life, so aging is on my brain. I take pretty good care of myself but I just had a moment in the mirror tonight waging a brief battle with my aging. A few months ago a dermatologist gave me a cream he wanted me to use to bleach a brown sun spot above my eyebrow. I don't usually go for fancy creams but the doctor said "It's a miracle -- takes away brown spots, wrinkles, everything!" That was a few months ago, and tonight I felt compelled to finally take it out and apply it to that nasty sun spot, and maybe make a little effort to fight the evidence of my aging.

I keep my skin in great shape with my grandma's skin secret (which I wrote about a few months back) but when I looked in the mirror recently I realized the sun damage is aging me. Sometimes the Lazy thing for me to do is acknowledge that something is bugging me, and has possibly been bugging me for some time, and to just bust a move -- or bust open the sun-spot-eliminator-miracle-cream.

The "Lazy Way" is less effort, less stress, and more joy. Sometimes just a little effort makes a difference. Sometimes a little effort = a little more joy.

My dad didn't take good care of himself on a lot of levels. Few of us take care of ourselves perfectly. We slip and slide around. We pay perfect attention and then don't pay any attention. We eat the wrong things, don't drink enough of the right things. We drive with the top down without sun block.

Well I'll be having a little Lazy Fun with my sun spots starting today. I'll apply a little cream each day and see how it goes. And, I have a renewed commitment to sunblock, and have it placed in the car doors for easy access. Little efforts = little bits of joy in my new relationship with aging.