By Tanya Dodd-Hise
I think that I need therapy.
No really. I have been obsessing a little bit about things that I have absolutely no control over. And what have I been obsessing over, you might ask?
As everyone knows, I am a new mom again. Our baby girl is 11 months old. I was 41 years old when she was born. And I know that nowdays, all kinds of women are having babies at 35, 40, 45, even 50 years old. But I remember, before she was born, standing in the shower when the thought hit me: when this baby is MY age, I will be 82. Oh my God.
I guess because I don’t feel 42 years old, this was a realization that hit me hard and has been hitting me regularly since. I feel young, I feel healthy (for the most part – working on it), I feel active – I mean hell, I didn’t run my first 5K until I was 42 years old! But the fact of the matter is that I actually have been on this earth for close to half of the time that will (I hope) be alotted.
To top it off, my oldest son, Nicholas, and his wife are going to make me a grandmother in the near future (January). Now don’t get me wrong, I am thrilled and excited to meet my granddaughter! And this is the ONE scenario where I actually feel young – WAY too young to be a grandmother! It’s like I am caught in a very odd place, where I feel kind of old to be a new mom, but still feel very young to be a grandmother. I tell people that my darling son has done me wrong, because now when I am out and about with both of the baby girls, people are likely to ask me if they are both my granddaughters. Then there will be explanations about Harrison being my daughter and Zoe being my granddaughter. Son…you did me wrong…
But there are times when my mortality hits me, and I freak out, despite the knowledge that there’s nothing I can do about it. None of us can! I was driving the other day with Erikka and the kids, and she started daydreaming about Harrison getting married. That set off the sad thoughts in my head of how old I could be when that happens. What if she doesn’t marry until she is in her 30s? That puts me in my 70s. What if she doesn’t have kids until her 30s or 40s, like her mommies? That puts me in my 70s or 80s, God willing. Then the thoughts hit me that anything could happen between now and then, and I could very well not be here at all. These thoughts start a landslide of scenarios that are always in the back of my mind that would prevent me from seeing my kids and grandkids grow up, or experiencing a lifetime with my wife. I obsess about car accidents almost every time I go out, with or without kids. I worry about plane crashes every time I step foot on one (should NEVER have watched “Lost”). I worry about breast cancer with each passing year, because it is so prevalent in my family, and because I, as a small business owner, am going on another year without health insurance. As these thoughts and fears came swirling in my head as we drove that day, I got so emotional and said, “I just hate knowing that there is an expiration date. I want to be with my family, with my wife, forever. I don’t want it to end.” I know. It is probably not healthy to have these thoughts on a regular basis. I just want to be here for them and with them…always. It’s probably not normal, I know this.
But like I said in the beginning, I think that I need therapy.
By: Danny Thomas
it’s been over a month since I blogged
which is strange
usually I am prolific in the summer…
the summer makes me think.
and it makes me take my time.
and thinking, along with taking my time usually lead to writing…
but this summer has been full.
Not just of the usual summer stuff
not just sunblock
and fire works
and plastic backyard pools…
this summer my dad died.
it’s hard to write any words after those words.
it’s been hard to write any words at all.
from the time I started writing this blog, along with my wife, he has been who I write for.
I mean I write for anyone who’ll read it but
he is who is in my heart when I write.
I guess that won’t change.
I have A New Hole.
He was my hero.
I am glad and grateful all my girls met their granddad.
I am glad and grateful I was there when he died.
I am glad and grateful the worst parts of his illness were short
and quick and relatively comfortable.
I am glad and grateful circumstance allowed my family to be around him, together, when he died.
I am glad and grateful arrangements were more or less simple and reasonable…
I am glad and grateful that my dad and I spent the last several years really sharing openly with each other our mutual respect and admiration.
I am glad and grateful that all of these things help me to feel, on some level “okay”
There is a lot to be grateful for.
I have A New Hole.
A New Heartbreak.
A friend recently wrote, “Language is an inadequate method of communication to describe most of the human condition. I demand a more suitable replacement.”
As it turns out she was talking, to some degree, about child rearing, and specifically the emotional rollercoaster of sleep training… but, even without context, the statement works in the broadest sense.
It hit me.
There is, indeed, no language, no rendering of words, that can describe the strange emptiness and sadness I feel as a result of my dad dying, or the feeling I have of being okay with it.
Okay with the grief, okay with how it happened, the process…
okay with not being okay…
it doesn’t even make sense, hence; words fail.
I just have This Hole…
and I know little things… and big things…
are going to nudge that hole
off and on
for the rest of my life.
and that seems terribly sad.
and terribly right.