Apr 19, 2016
The Long Haul
This is the final post about mom's memorial lunch. We asked dad beforehand if he wanted to speak and he said no. That didn't surprise us. Mom's loss has hit dad hard. He's not much of a speech maker either, more a man of action.
Nobody sees the inside of a marriage quite like the kids. It's part of being a family. Both the good times and rough times. I won't talk about the rough times other than to say what my parents taught me is you don't give up on your partner or your marriage. People are flawed, be there for them because you ain't always a grand prize yourself. A lesson that has allowed me to build my own loving marriage.
Mom had many major heart surgeries during her lifetime. One or all of us were always there in the recovery as she woke up or very soon after. Everyone was always overjoyed that she had made it through one more time. This last one was especially tough. My mom was convinced she had pushed her luck one too many times. She was convinced she would be put under and never wake up again. In the recovery room after that last surgery, as she came to my dad had stepped out for a minute. She immediately started to ask for him insistently and wouldn't stop until he came back. He was back right away. She immediately calmed down as they held hands, then looked into each other's eyes with no words and finally hugged. I'll never forget the look that passed between them. I realized how deeply and profoundly they loved and relied on each other. Before that moment I always put the "mom and dad" label on them when I thought of them. In that moment I saw them as a "husband and a wife".
At the memorial lunch we asked dad again if he wanted to say anything, just to make sure he hadn't changed his mind. He said this, and this only "Love like there's no tomorrow."