Monday, October 22, 2007

Last Autumn

"My last Autumn,"
he quietly said.

I was driving my Father to radiation treatment.

It was a sunny, warm October day, 1992.
I can still hear his voice.

He knew.

My Father was a full use person.

I found his little pencils, sharpened with a pocket knife.

My husband brought me a maple leaf.

He saw it on the ground while he was mowing.

There are lots of leaves on the ground now.

My Father would have enjoyed the digital age.

He would have enjoyed Corner.

He would have been 85 years old today.


Sheila said...

Sad memories but happy ones too. My Dad is 81 and has dementia.
He saved little pencils stubs to write his notes to himself. All sharpened with his pocket knife. I eventually bought him a small computerised pocket reminder.
I worried at first that it would confuse him. It took a while but he figured it out, and he loved it, often referring to it, just for the pleasure of seeing it work.
Now notes and computers mean nothing to him.
Dad's are so special aren't they..

Q said...

Dear Sheila,
It is the poignancy of October.
My Mother had dementia. I understand how it feels to watch our parents slowly lose their memory.
When I was going through my parent's house I found all sorts of charming reminders of their lives. The tiny pencil stubs were practical folk art to me. I made many into lapel pins.
Today I am wearing my Dad's little pencil.
Dads are special. I miss mine.
Thanks for the hug!

smilnsigh said...

I leave you a hug, for the day. A day of both sadness, and of happy memories, I'm sure.


Naturegirl said...

This was a post filled with love for your father who may not be in your arms but always in your heart.
Truly a lovely tribute and memories of your dad. hugging you Anna xo

Naturegirl said...

Sherry I had to comment once again after reading yours and Sheila's mother has Dimentia and this is the stress that keeps me so worried and overwhelmed..something else that we share
truly we have met for a reason.Anna

Q said...

Dear Mari-Nanci,
Thank you. I like remembering my Dad. He was an interesting man. I understand him better today than I did when I was younger. My Father liked pumpkin pie. My Mother would bake one for him sometimes on his birthday. He also like pumpernickel bread. I had pumpernickle toast for breakfast this morning in his honor.
I have many simple ways of being connected. Many ways of saying, "Thank you." Many ways of saying, "I love you."
Thank you for your hugs.
Thank you for your kindness.

~Red Tin Heart~ said...

DEar Sherry, my heart broke when I saw your Father's little pencils. It reminded me so of my Dad, and his little compulsions to keep everything orderly by his chair. I am thinking of you, and praying for God to wrap His arms around you today and comfort you in ways only He can do. You are loved. <3
xoxo Nita

Q said...

Dear Anna,
Thank you for your hugs and kind words.
We are very connected, Dear Goddess of the Roses!
Dementia is difficult. I remember the feelings of helplessness as I watched my Mother slip further and further into her childhood.
I knew any day I would get the phone call that she had slipped away. Although I thought I was prepared I was not.
My father died with his boots on.
He had instructions for me.
They both died as they had lived.
The stress of life never seems to leave us. I find hope in the garden like you. I find joy in the flora and fauna. I find peace in the Moon and in the stars. I find comfort in friends.
Thank you for being my friend.
Hugs, hot tea and lavender,

Q said...

Dear Nita,
Thank you, Dear Heart!
As I grow older the way I celebrate with my loved ones has changed. I still celebrate but now many of the birthdays and anniversaries are celebrated in quiet, inner ways. Sometimes we have cake and ice cream! Sometimes it is toast. The gifts I give are gifts of forgiveness. I receive many gifts on these special, remembering days.
God has given me the gift of understanding. It is a peace and an acceptance that gives me great comfort. God has shown me the way of honoring. I have learned compassion. My God is a big God, there is room for everyone at the table.
Thank you for your prayers and for sending your love and your compassion. My daughter told me one time, "Everyone needs prayers."
I send you blessings.
I send you my love,

Mary said...


I have this lump in my throat, you see.


Q said...

Dear Mary,
We do cherish the time we have with our Dads. I hope you have a great visit with yours this coming weekend. Even if he doesn't call you by name, he knows you in another way.
I will be sending you lots of safe travel.

Sprite said...


Dear Sherry,

This is quite poignant and a touching tribute to your father's birthday.

My father passed when I was 22. I often think of how the decades have brought more wisdom for understanding myself and him. I have traversed so many phases of wishing I could talk to him now because of this event, or that event- over the years. I've even had the experience of suddenly understanding what he might have been feeling or meaning at any specific moment in his life through my experiences, and wishing I could relate that to him as my adult self.

We can not go back and know then what we know now, and that's okay. We can change the way we think about it, through love, grace, and forgiveness. It's life. We go forward.

Death is such an interesting process.

Ruminating can still leave us in deep thought.

Much love,


Q said...

Dear Sprite,
You were a very young woman when your Dad died. I was almost 40 years old. I do know what you mean about wanting to talk with your Father when a life event happens. I had so many of them in my 40's.
My Father said I would always "have a roof over my head, food on my table and shoes on my feet." When he died I thought that was now my responsibilty. My husband assured me he would make sure I was cared for! Now I tell my children that they will always "have a roof over their heads, food on their tables and shoes on their feet." I know the feeling of wanting the security of that. We each are responsibile for our lives but it is nice to know somehow when the wolf is at the door someone wiser than ourselves knows what to do!
Some Dads seem to have a built in knowing.

Deb said...

Dear Sherry
We are connected by our stories in so many ways - thank you for sharing the story of your dear Dad.

Q said...

Dear Deb,
We are very connected! I like that. I like knowing I am never alone. I like knowing others have walked this path too.