Thursday, February 11, 2016

Dad

Well hello Blogger World Long time no see or in this case no post.  Since my last post January 7th I just havn’t felt like writing. I’ve had lots of feelings floating around but nothing I could get on paper. I’m thankful to my husband who insisted that I go back home at Christmas to see my Dad. Each day after Pamela and I left Missouri my Dad’s health declined.  It was like we went from a 2-3 month time table to a 2-3 week to a 2-3 hour time table in less than 20 days. 
So on Tuesday January 19th at about 4:50pm my Dad drew his last breath surrounded by family. When I got that final call in Texas it took my breath away. You can never really prepare for the end.
So that Thursday the 21st David and I drove to College Station picked up Pamela and headed to Missouri. Just as we were pulling out of her drive way the rain started. When we stopped for lunch just outside Dallas it was 38 degrees. The driving was miserable all the way to Oklahoma. By the time we got to Joplin Missouri it was snowing. We stopped for the night there since the roads were getting slippery and David was tired..
When we woke up Friday the sun was out and the snow was already starting to disappear to Pamela’s disappointment but not to her Dad’s since he was driving. We only had a few more hours before arriving in Chillocothe where our hotel was. From there it was about another 30 minutes down the road to my Dad’s place and my little sister Jerri Lynn’s place where everyone was to gather. 
Before pulling into Chillocothe we stopped in Hamilton Missouri and for you quilters you know that is the home of the Missouri Star Quilt Company . I wasn’t in the mood actually for shopping/browsing the 15+ buildings they had rejuvenated but we stopped for lunch at a place my brother in law Kevin told me about when I was up at Christmas. It was called the Blue Sage. Okay now we’re talking a town that was about to dry up until Jenny and her family created the quilt company and brought new life to this sleeping but quaint farm town with a population of actually about 1700 folks. It’s also the home of the JC Penney the founder of JC Penney’s. Anyway the prices were not small town prices but were prices we’d find here in the city of Houston or even in Kansas City but the food was exceptional or at least I thought so. They hand fried their garlic potato chips that came with their sandwiches. After the price shock even David had to admit the food was really good but said we’d have to eat at Taco Bell after this to make our money last. He would be in luck since there is a Taco Bell right across from our hotel. I don't want my post to bring you totally down so I wanted to share the small moments of good and there will be more.

The rest of the day/evening was with family and the viewing. It was so rough seeing Dad. It took me a while to even walk into the viewing room. After the viewing service we went to the radio recording studio to record our thoughts and goodbyes to Dad to play at the service the next day. We were given something like 3 minutes each and when it was my turn I sounded like a blubbering idiot but thanks to editing it didn’t sound so bad. I just couldn’t think of what to say or how but my nieces and nephews did. Dad’s favorite saying was “see you in the funny papers” and he always said “toodle-loo” when we hung up. I have to laugh because Dad was a talker and it was hard to get to the “toodle-loo”  I had to plan my calls to him knowing that when we talked I’d have a hard time getting him off the phone. LOL. An hour later I’d say Dad I’m at the office or my appointment I need to go but instead of saying toodle-loo he’d start a whole new conversation. That was Dad.

They parked Dad's favorite red tractor in front of the funeral home. You might see a firetruck for a fallen firefighter but not a tractor in Houston.. Dad was a pretty amazing man who will be greatly missed. I know my little sister who ran him up and down the roads for the past year and half for treatments and my nephew who thought the sun rose and set in his Grandpa have big holes in their lives right now.  My other two sisters, nieces, nephews and outlaws are all grieving and I know/understand with time we will all heal but it sure hurts like hell now.
Saturday the 23rd  the day of the funeral if was a balmy 25 but felt like
18 or colder with the wind. Pamela said she figured Grandpa knew how excited she was about the snow over Christmas so he made sure she got her fill of it this time too. At some time during this day we were driving to the church/grave site and Pamela goes "oh look  frosted mini wheats".  Through the tears I had to giggle. Crazy kid. All the hay bails were topped with snow and yep she was right they looked like frosted mini wheat cereal.  
During the service they played the cd we created at the radio station the night before. It was funny the stories and memories all had a common thread…. Red tractors, speed, talking, drinking coffee, the coffee shop and humor. Dad always had a sense of humor. He so loved life. Before my nephew Josiah could hardly talk he could say “green is bad” meaning John Deere. 
Dad loved speed. One time when he picked me up in Missouri and we were driving back to Chicago where he was living at the time, I woke up and caught him racing the car next to us on the freeway in the pouring rain. Oh Lordy! I was probably about 10 and scared to death. Even at Christmas he and the oldest nephew (Jeremiah) went out in for a drive in Jeremiah’s new truck and did a little speed test going down the road of course against another car. And oh how Dad loved the coffee shop. If there was someone there to talk to and drink coffee with you’d find him here there for an hour or two or ......hours. Many of us who hung out with him for the day found ourselves at the coffee shop for no telling how long. Did I mention how He loved to talk.  

Pamela took this picture at the grave site. Yep that's snow and it's cold! I'm not sure how it came about but I think Cresia and I were talking about needing our long johns when my husband pipes up and goes "oh damn I knew I forgot something...I forgot my underwear!" David Earl!. He was kidding of course.
As we continued to sit there after the grave side service and most  but not all folks had left and without thinking and even realizing what I had said until everyone started laughing I said out loud "Dad I love you but we're freezing our asses off".  Well that's one way to lighten the moment without trying.  Leave it to David and I.
Sunday we got up and went to breakfast with all the cousins and all my sisters at the Crown. Dad's favorite coffee shop. Most everyone left right after breakfast and head to their respective homes.  We stayed around the rest of the day and hung out with my little sister and her family just for comfort and sharing. We headed back to Texas on Monday the 25th.
The resting place for the tractor on Dad and Carolyn's farm for now.

Our final stop as we left town to head home. It's hard to imagine that Dad and Carolyn won't be there this June when we return for my nephew Zachariah and his fiancee' Bailey Jo's wedding.

Oh and If anyone is missing any Canadian geese you can drive to the lake behind my sister's house in Missouri. I think they were all there. It's a crazy sound hearing those geese just a honking after dark.
 As we passed through Oklahoma Monday on our way back to Texas
  Had One happy face to greet me on Tuesday when I picked her up from the kennel. That's the longest she's had to stay away from us since she came to live with us.
Lilley "MOMMY You're back! Can I come home now?"
I hope my post didn't bring you too down.
Have some quilts I'm working on for more babies. Babies that are already here dang it but I'm working on them. 
Until next post.. 'Death leaves a heartache no one can heal, love leaves a memory no one can steal.'  ~ From a Headstone in Ireland



6 comments:

Kate said...

Hugs, Carla. ♥

Linda said...

Carla, this was simply a beautiful post! It lifted my heart and I know it will lift others as well! I loved hearing you tell us about your dad! You are so blessed to have so many good memories of him! Thank you for sharing this with us.

Sylvia said...

HI Carla,
Beautiful post. I understand your heartache. I lost my Dad just a couple months ago too. Take comfort in the plentiful memories you have.
Love the doggie pic too. My sheltie is always the happy to see us too. :-)
Take care.
Sylvia

Lisa guinther said...

Blessings to you and your family.

Lisa guinther said...

Sending blessings to you and your family.

Lisa guinther said...

By the way, my mom met J.C.Penney, when she worked at the store in Trenton.