Thursday, July 31, 2008

What about Bob?

Eight years ago today my father-in-law passed away. He and my mother-in-law were married for 38 years. They had two children, a daughter whom I befriended in third grade and a son, who I married in 1993 thus getting the sister I always wanted, in addition to a husband.

"They" say that time makes it easier. What exactly does that mean anyway? Does easier mean that the painful memories of his passing fade away and are slowly eclipsed by the happy memories that preceded them? If so, I guess this is true. Still, I feel cheated by his early departure from our lives, and from the lives of our children.

Yesterday in the car, Thing 1, displaying her characteristic sensitivity, expressed her sadness that she will never know him. I told her that she was so lucky to have had a relationship with his mother, her great-grandmother, who lived five years longer than her son. Thing 2's take on it: Isn't tomorrow a holiday? Daddy says it's a holiday and that we're going out to dinner to celebrate. Special day = celebration when you're six.

Bob lived many years with heart disease so it wasn't a surprise to us that he passed away earlier than his contemporaries. But that didn't make it any easier. He grew up as an only child and wanted us to have a large family. He tried to talk me into it on many occasions, in fact. Forget science for a moment: I am certain he had his posthumous hand in our twins' arrival.

He would be so proud of the things his son has done in the last eight years, especially his greatest accomplishment, stepping off the technology treadmill to spend more time with his daughters.

As I mentioned, Bob's mother outlived him. We were so blessed to live within a mile of her those last five years and we visited her multiple times each week. (This was as much for my own sanity as for her well-being. When you have newborn / infant / toddler / preschool twins you are looking for an easy outing and this was it! It's the exact opposite of taking your kids to a restaurant. They run around like crazies, make a lot of noise, and the residents of the assisted living community love it and beg for more.) I consider it one of Bob's greatest gifts to us to move his mom to a home near our house. The pinks have many, many memories of their great grandmother and I find comfort in that when July 31 rolls around.


Polka Dot Moon said...

I'm sure today is a hard day for all of you. He sounds like a wonderful man and how lucky you were to have had him in your life.

Thom Singer said...

What a beautiful tribute to a fine man. His goodness is evident by the legacy he left behind in the whole extended Morris family.