Sunday, October 4, 2009

Dad Leaving : Emptiness Passes With Hope

Thanks for your message my friend. I had those same feelings when my Dad passed away. Your mom was a very close friend. You will need time to digest that loss. I know that feeling of emptiness well. I loved my Dad so much and we golfed together and enjoyed it as a family hundreds or thousands of times. He was just such a kind man and hardly never in a rush. He worked hard but not in a rushed way. I think this allowed him to take care of many aunts and uncles and brothers and sisters as they got older and needed someone who would keep in touch and visit. I did not believe that emptiness would ever leave us either. It is still there sometimes but not as emotionally charged with depression. Now, I'm getting to know my mom much better than I did before he passed away in late August of 2008. I'd say the heaviness of the feeling began to subside after winter ended this spring and worked on into the summer. Now a little more than a year later, I'd say what I have is many happy memories and not so much depression. When we got together after his passing, my brother Al sometimes led prayers that helped me remember Dad. It also helped me to write my thoughts down to accompany the youtube video I posted of Dad's Internment Service and taping the military honor guard that was there and played taps and did a 21 gun salute. You might want to read what I wrote in the information to accompany the video.

I think that having hope is very important -- something to look forward to, something to strive for and aim for gives me an impetus to keep on going. When you speak of wanting to work with newly diagnosed MS folks, you may not see being able to do that yet, but ask what would you need to do differently than in your old life to make it work out for yourself. How could you make it doable and manageable? For me, I think doing it at home and having video meetings would help me a lot. That would enable me to avoid the disabling drive downtown with the hand cramping it often brings on. I also think of how long and how often could I work on something. Being real honest with myself about my limits is core. Next, I need to understand what type of projects they work on and how they evaluate them at Sister Kenny Research Institute. How might I fit in there for a few hours each week? Some weeks I have therapy and doctors apptments all week every day and I'm just too tired. Sometimes my legs will flare up so bad that all I can do is lie down with my legs elevated and try to keep things under control. I'd be honest with them about that so that they and I have no misconceptions. I know it's not time yet to do this type of thing, but I have some hope that this aim of helping with experimental design in physical therapy research will help my recovery. A few hours a week, somewhat irregular, physical limits, even though I'd be limited, I believe I can still help you at Sister Kenny Research Institute here in Minneapolis.

So, what could you do to help out? What are your limits and how might you cope with them? What type of organization/group of people could you help? How would you make this manageble for you and make it a big positive in your life? It seems like you might be able to do some finance education for folks too. Many public libraries have such programs where an expert talks to people and helps them.

Well, this is the type of thing I'm aiming for. It's a little ways off, but I can see it coming together if I make some more progress. Thanks for writing to me and sharing. I very much appreciate what you have to say and the insight you have. Thanks my friend from Texas. Frank aka BigBird from Minnesota.

Here's the link for the Internment Service for Dad in the summer of 2008. The url for my overall youtube site is: