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Sidetracked & Sideswiped 

I’m a week into returning to school and am already in trouble.

I let my focus fall by the wayside. I can make it up through the rest of the semester, as we can have the lowest graded assignment dropped, but it means that I’ve officially used up my Get Out of Jail free card. The rest of this semester is going to be one crazy hustle. I’m enjoying the process. If anything, I need to adjust my learning style.

On Monday (this is last Monday, not Labor Day), I received word from my sister that my father passed away. He had issues for some time, and they all caught up with him. My dad and I were close when I was younger, but some decisions were made I didn’t agree with. That, coupled with his lack of listening to his doctor’s warnings became something of a point of contention between us. He spent the last 15 years of his life between a nursing home and a hospital. I miss him, but not enough to shed any tears just yet. I remember movies, mostly. How he took my sister and I to see Robocop, only to miss the first 15 minutes of the film. He went back to the ticket booth and either brought a second set of tickets or convinced them to let us stay for the next showing. I recalled how we all saw The Fly II and my sister & I left at different times to cry in the restroom over a poor ill fated dog. My dad had this strange obsession with The Godfather. Watched the movies a million times and read the book (which caused me to do the same). There’s still so much I never really knew about him. Then again, how much do we really know about anyone, regardless of what they choose to share?

The last time I cried over my dad was when I visited him in the hospital, watching him dazed and confused with a feeding tube in his stomach. I can’t even begin to count how many strokes he suffered over the years. He made it through five that I’m aware of. I’m embarrassed by this. I’m sure it’ll hit me hard some months from now. Delayed reactions, or a blunt affect, I believe it’s called.

I like to think he’s at peace now. It’s a comfort. Anything’s better than all of that. At least my Grandmother made it to her 90s and died in her bed, surrounded by her family.

Usually, when it comes to death, I find the best way to deal with it is to work. By working, the mind is so busy that you don’t create any quiet time to reflect or to feel. However, I had to be involved this time around (as I wasn’t when my mother passed way) and spent most of the week riding between home and Staples to get forms printed and faxed. This, coupled with everyone sending me their condolences, put everything front and center. It’s a kindness, I appreciate it. I’m thankful to have enough people in my life to receive those pourings of comraderie, but the last thing I wanted was to deal with all of that. Or maybe, I’m not entirely sure how to handle it. It’s my fault for opening my mouth.

I’m going to be good for now. Things are getting better.I just have a lot of work ahead of me, and have to hunker down.


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