…in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1 Thessalonians 5:18
Everyday around 3:30pm I get a call. It is my dad checking in with me. When he calls, he always says something to the effect of, “I am just checking in with our leader, number 1” (I am the eldest of three daughters). He then proceeds to tell me about his daily activities, some are real, some are not but are real to him, and how blessed he is. He remembers that my mom returned to be with God but I am not sure how clearly the funeral or her sickness are inside of his thoughts. He always ends our conversations with his appreciation for how my sisters and I are taking care of the old man. What makes these conversations so special is that I will get another call shortly after this one sharing with me the same information. My dad not remembering that he had just spoken to me. My father has short term memory loss.
My dad has always been a kind gentleman, filled with humility and grace. He has always been a servant, willing to help anyone. My dad has never met a stranger. So, today although he loses track of actions in the present moment, he has maintained a pleasantness. I am praying that he can hold on to this for a longtime. Rest assured, he is at peace with his memory. He always shares that for a man of eighty plus, he is doing good. His doctor says so too.
“Live a good honorable life. Then when you get older and think back, you’ll be able to enjoy it a second time.” Dalai Lama
I am writing the Thanksgiving blog to share with others the special relationship that I have with my dad. And for the record, it is not a burden but an honor to have taken care of my mom and now dad. As my once young vibrant father settles into being a weaker more frail octogenarian, I am thankful that I am here to share these moments and to experience the circle of life with him. I see life differently because of these experiences. I recognize that what I fill my day with will soon become the backdrop of my future thoughts and memories. Needless to say, I am making better choices now.
If you ask me is it important for my dad to remember me? The answer of course is, yes! But I know without question that my memories are just as important. I am thankful that despite all that my dad forgets, he still remembers to call me to say, ‘I love you’. Have a Happy Thanksgiving Season!