Making Up For Lost Time

Posted: September 17, 2016 in Community, Family, Humour
Tags: , , , , , , ,

lost-time   Time. We all have the same amount in a day. Our hours are the same length, as are our minutes and seconds, even though sometimes it feels like despite measurements the say otherwise, they feel longer or shorter depending upon the situation. They can seem much longer when waiting for something special, and can seem so much shorter when spending them with someone special. It’s a grand paradox that this happens….and yet it still does.

I was very fortunate to have worked with my father Roger. Together we worked for almost 30 years, and it’s a time that I often took for granted but always cherished. It is a blessing indeed to still have him around us, as he still has that spark of life I so often needed. He remains a constant reminder to me that life is to be lived, not just existed.

I say take for granted because I always assumed that everyone in my family felt that same and experienced it likewise. I have come to realize as I age, however, that we all experience life differently and that because we all have only 24 hours in a day, our own existences affect our perceptions and experiences. It’s an important distinction that changes your own reality because it can make you appreciate even more the time you have together.

My sister Barbara moved to town a couple of years ago, after being out and about on her own journey through life. I can say without reservation that she has had the most difficult path of any of my family. I don’t know 10% of it, really, but what I do know is humbling and at times shocking, her personal experiences a harrowing tale that I cannot share. But what I can tell you is that her return to our lives has been both a blessing and a saving grace. I honestly believe that had she not come back at this juncture in our lives, both my parents would have perished.

Before Barb came along, my parents were gliding along, existing in their home, surviving but not thriving. We were essentially at wits end on what to do for them. Life is complicated, and we all have circumstances that affect how we react to these times. Barb moved here and sacrificed her quiet existence to take both of my parents in, to care and nurture them and provide a living environment that gave them back their dignity and will to live. My mother has since made it to long-term care, where she has been resurrected and kept as secure as she can possibly be. My dad now lives with Barb full-time, and he has experienced a magnificent metamorphosis and regained much that he had lost. She has straightened out their finances and managed to keep them going. She is a dynamo of energy and love and kindness and respectfulness, much more than I could ever be. She stepped up when none of us could or would. She saved our family.

I don’t say this lightly. I don’t make excuses. I could not have done as she did, as my circumstances differ and make doing this impossible for me. That said, it is amazingly humbling to watch this angel grace us with her integrity and love. My father cannot say it enough: he is where he should be. He has love and support and a dignifying life, at a time when he most needs it. We as a family cannot thank Barb enough for her efforts. And of course, we cannot forget her amazing husband Bradley, who treat my dad like he was his own, and provides much of the mental stimuli that has borne anew my father’s intellect and energy. What a team they make!

Barb and I were always close as children, being exactly 18 months apart. And for much of our early lives we were an integral part of each other. But as time passed, as we became adults and we married and drifted from each other as often happens, we become lost. We have been adrift for 30 years, occasionally meeting and catching up, becoming more acquaintances and distant relatives than family, really.

It’s amazing what 4 years can do after all that time. 4 years ago my brother passed away an event that rekindled Barb and I’s friendship and has led to our own catharsis and rekindling and mutual respect. She manages the daily affairs of my father and to a degree my mother’s, and I am content with my role as spear carrier, second row, offering help when I can, communicating frequently and loving the fact that I can still see my mom and dad alive still.

As my sister from the same mister…..I love you Barb. Never change your ways except to become more awesome.

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