Wednesday, December 30, 2009

the funeral

Dad's brother, Norman, passed away just before Christmas and the kids, Mom and Dad, and I drove up to Adrian, MO for the memorial service. We had a real time keeping Mom down for the 30 minute service. The family was separate from the general population and the girls and I, (and my two nieces), kept charge of Mom while my Dad and brother sat on the front of the family section. Happily, we had enough space where no one could notice her getting up and down and up and down every couple minutes, and we also had a back door and took her out twice for a walk "downtown" while the service continued. She no longer follows simple commands very well at all. My "sit down" went largely unheeded, but she had to push herself out of the arm chair to stand, so I kind of pushed her off balance a little so she couldn't get up every 5 seconds, (and I mean every five seconds.) Once I got distracted and didn't get her off-balance fast enough and she was already standing before I even knew it. I held her at bay, but thought, "Oh, boy..." and whispered to her, "Now, don't want me to put you in one of my restraints I use at school do you?" She laughed. (I actually do work in a school where I sometimes have to use restraining moves.) Anyway, I had one arm and was wondering what I was going to do if she decided to walk up to the podium, when Christine grabbed Mom's other arm and in one smooth move, forced her to step back which made the chair hit her in the back of the knees, she lost balance and sat. Christine whispered, "Now that's how it's done." I stood amazed. That girl knows what she's doing. Anyway, we made it through the service. That afternoon at the internment, she wanted to walk all over the cemetery, but that was ok with us. Everybody kind of kept an eye open for her, (and I mean everyone)---the whole family was distracted making sure she didn't get away. I think Christine took her to see my brother's grave site, I'm not sure, and I don't know if she had a reaction or not. I don't even look towards that part of the cemetery. It gives me a headache.

Anyway, Dad will sure miss Norman. They talked to each other on the phone each and every day. Dad even said, "I don't know what I'm going to do with this cell phone now. I don't have anybody to call." That's so sad. Dad has lost four siblings thus far---two just this year.

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