Sunday, February 6, 2011

The hardest parts

I feel very matter of fact about my dad having brain cancer, and knowing that he will die from it. The part that is driving me 'round the bend is how the disease seems to steal away parts of him first. Personality changes, forgetfulness, obsessions, unpredictability, making up a fantasy world. I wasn't around him all that much while I was growing up so I'm always asking my sister, "Has he always done this?" Whatever the this might be. Sometimes things seem pretty nutty, and we remind each other that it's the cancer, not him, and try to maintain perspective.

Dad doesn't walk so well anymore, and usually uses a cane. In truth, he should be using a walker, but he won't. He's tripped and fallen a few times, he's fallen asleep sitting on the edge of the bed and then tumbled over. Twice. He is sometime very forgetful. My sister and I decided he shouldn't live alone anymore. Hospice agreed. He didn't like that either, but conceded. So now my stepbrother stays with Dad a few days a week, and an in home healthcare aide stays a few days a week and the other days Dad spends with his girlfriend, either visiting her in her hometown or she staying a few days here. I go over and visit for several hours, twice a week. We still have some great conversations.

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