Friday, April 16, 2010

Not as cruel as May for me, but up there

This is one of those heavy posts that most people won't know what to do with. Just so you know.

And that's OK for me. I still need to write it.

April, for me, is a grim, stomach-achey kind of month.

In April of 2007, a couple days from now, my dad attempted suicide. It's not that the prior times weren't bad, but this was the most extreme.

I got there in time to see them carrying him to the ambulance. The police officers told me that the EMTs had gotten him breathing immediately, that they'd put a trach tube in.

We spent a long, long time that night in the emergency room. We signed a waiver saying we understood the risks, which included brain damage and death, of taking out the temporary tube and putting in a longer-term one.

He was pale and cold and his eyes were open, but blank.

They said we should assume there was brain damage. That they would assess the extent of it if he woke up.


If became when, and he did wake up. Agitated. Angry.

And then what they didn't know was if his trachea had been crushed. It was a long time until he could breathe on his own. Till he wasn't on all kinds of tubes.

It was a long, terrible time. It wrecked us.

Ultimately he got better. And he got out. He wasn't fixed - it's not something neatly fixable - but he was better.

And we were always scared. Always ready.

So last April, right around this time, when my mom called, I knew. And I knew what to do.

But just because you know what to do doesn't mean you're ever prepared for how you feel.

While that panic has worn off, while I don't live every day afraid, while I can now hear the phone ring without flinching, I'm still well aware of what day it is.

And I still hate April.


  1. I'm sorry, Lisa. Hugs to you.

  2. Hugs.

    And a very, *very* gentle suggestion to make time to see your person that you talk to. Not because you're not allowed to hate April (you are, I promise), but because it couldn't hurt, and it might help.

    More hugs.

  3. Who could blame you for feeling that way? No one. *hug*

  4. I'm sorry, it's unimaginable to go through something so painful and real. I'm sending you a huge hug.

  5. It's March for me. 4 years ago now since my mom passed. This past March was the easiest of the 4, so there really is truth in the statement "time heals all wounds" -- well sort of. It's not a wound that will heal... there will always be a mark on my soul, but it does get easier. Thinking of you. In a non-creepy, stranger from the internet sort of way. :)

  6. Monique Esselmont4/16/2010 6:19 PM

    Just wanted to let you know I'm thinking of you. I just wanted to send my warm thoughts and hugs to you. Things will get easier with time, but take the time to mourn. Sending more hugs your way...

  7. I am sending lots of love and internet hugs to you, hunny bunny.

  8. I'll hate April on your behalf. And I'm thinking of you.

  9. Hi Lisa, I'm sorry that it is such a grim time for memories. I applaud your honesty... I think that honesty is healing. Hugs, thinking of you.

  10. Hugs Lisa...Thinking of you and Betty.

  11. I'm so sorry that this is so hard. We're thinking of you. Lots of love.

  12. It's hard, but things will get better. Until then, have a cupcake and remember what the Buddha said: It is always better to come from a place of forgiveness.

  13. I'm very sorry for your loss. It must be so hard, especially when the calendar practically forces you to face it.

    You are in my thoughts.

  14. Hugs to you. Hug his namesake. Thinking of you and Betty.
    <3 <3 <3

  15. Ten years on I still remember 29th July as the day my friend was killed. But I don't cry on that day anymore. Not always anyway.

    Hugs to you. What is remembered lives.

  16. Karen, random reader4/17/2010 4:55 PM

    I think of it as calendar anxiety . . . self care is very important when those horrible dates loom over you. It's hard to make the time to take care of yourself, but you and your family will be the better for it.

    Internet stranger advice, for what it is worth.

  17. Big Huge Hugs Lisa.
    April sucks for me too. April 17th 25 yrs ago to be exact.
    I now havent had Dad for 6 years longer than I had him. If that makes sense. Totally sucky month April. But much love and thoughts for you this month my friend :-)

  18. this post is so honest.
    i remember the first year after losing my father - it was definitely the most painful because Every Single Day it felt as thought it just happened the day before. somewhere between year 2 and 3 it stung less from day to day. there are always moments but, uh, it always sucks.
    and i feel the exact same way about Memorial Day. not sure i'll ever get to enjoy the day off again as long as i live since i can replay the phone call i got that day, years ago, word for word, emotion for emotion.
    loss is far and away the shittiest fact of life.
    here's to April coming to an end and August being closer every day.

  19. So sorry Lisa. Hug your little one close, tell him stories about your dad in better times and remember that this is what it means to be human. So sorry this is your burden to bear, he was so lucky to have you and Betty to walk with him.

  20. big hugs to you, and lots of caring thoughts.

  21. Thinking of you. It's December for me. But that creeping anxiety comes unbidden. Walk through it.


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