Saturday, July 30, 2005

When I was a Campfire girl, my troop used to go on several camping trips every year. One year, our leader, Mrs. Rosenbery, taught us how to cook burger patties on top of an old coffee can. First, we had to remove the lid with a very old, manual can opener. Then we could turn the can upside down over a pile of burning coal, and we'd cook the burger on the remaining top of the can. I remember being terrified of cutting myself with the jagged edge of the lid. I didn't even want to touch it once it had been dislodged from the can.

I'm having flashbacks on that jagged edge, somehow relating it to how my heart is feeling at this very moment. I've just hung up the phone with my sister, who tells me that my Dad is reconsidering the move to Colorado. His last two remaining friends live in the Bay Area, and he's known them since college. His best friend Pierre has been battling the onset of Alzheimers disease and Dad has been a wonderful support for him. They see each other twice weekly to play dominoes and eat lunch at Red Lobster.

Dad's also developed a network of friends at his assisted care facility, and he's realizing how much he's going to miss those folks. It doesn't hurt that they continually tell him how unhappy he'll be in the Colorado cold. Regardless, Dad is feeling extremely wanted and appreciated.

This is all great news. My Dad is realizing how happy he is and he wants to hold onto it as long as he can. At 81 years of age, who can blame him? Plus, there's no guarantee that he'd like his new place here in the Denver area. He'd have to make new friends.

Personally, I think it's the best decision. For him.

For me, it feels like a painful rejection. And irrational ideas keep popping into my head. First, I fail at keeping my mom alive and Dad chooses to live near his friends instead of me.

I know...I'm a big baby.

With an aching heart.