It Was a Dream

Three generations sat on a sofa. Like an audience does, they watched, as a man came to do his job. He hoisted metal puzzle pieces into a living room and snapped them together. In a few quick minutes it was assembled. In the middle of a living room is a hospital bed.
That was the only thing I wrote these past couple weeks. Besides what I wrote/read at my Papa's funeral.

I've been at my grandparent's house since the 31st. My Papa had terminal (stage 4) lung cancer. We came back home today. The whole time I was there I narrated what was happening in my head, which sounds strange, but I imagine Morgan Freeman does the same thing, so. I really don't know how to describe how I feel. While we were there I kept analyzing what was going on, how I felt, trying to stay busy. Almost everyday I drove back home, checked on puppies, and drove back (eventually I brought them to my grandparents house). I feel tired. I feel like it was all a dream. Everything seems so foggy now.

I was in denial until the funeral. When we (the whole family) were marched in through the center of the the Church, I cracked. It was embarrassing. I felt like the character in a movie nobody likes, because she uses public display of emotion for sympathy. I didn't know that was going to happen. I just kept my head down and didn't make eye contact with anyone. I mean, what are you supposed to do? Wave and smile? It wasn't a parade. I didn't get it together until it was my turn to speak, which I almost forgot to do until mom and Shaun (brother) nudged me out of the pew. I was nervous and shaking. And I was told that I read it too fast, but to me everything was in slow motion.

Seeing my Papa in a casket was infuriating. I didn't like the way he looked, you know, because a dead person can never look like an alive person. To know that any interaction with my Papa is now in the past is hardly believable right now. I'm scared of forgetting everything about him. Simple things like facial expressions and soft hands. I'm struggling to pull memories up in my mind to bask in them.
I'm trying to get to a normal state. I don't feel like crying, so I don't. I don't feel like being in a constant state of mourning, so I'm not. I'm just trying to get back to the things I want to do, which my Papa would have wanted. I don't know what I want or how I want to feel or anything. Maybe I just want to feel his presence one more time. Maybe I wish he didn't seem like an enigma. In life, I thought I knew him well, but now I have so many questions, and no Papa here to answer them. That's the hardest part.

I have become aware, through this process, how limited human understanding is. I already, sort of understood, but now I truly understand. How do we think we know anything about this world, the people in it, and our connections? So I take comfort in knowing that my Papa has what he has always wanted for himself and for every person he came in contact with: Knowing Perfect Love and Boundless Understanding.

Tomorrow I'll share what I read for his funeral. Maybe it will be easier to understand our relationship through those words than these jumbled thoughts.

I appreciate condolences, but I would better appreciate thankfulness for a soul going Home. Maybe for my Papa you could shout Glory! Like he would have done.


  1. It's been seven years since my mema died of emphysema, and I can still hear her voice as clear as yesterday. I can still see her face, not the way she was at the end, when she was suffering, but the way she was when she was healthy. You never forget the people you love, nothing about them. You might still be crying, seven years from now, but you won't forget.

    1. Thank you for your kind words! It's important not to forget.


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