Tuesday, June 12, 2007

Absence Makes the Father Grow Fonder

Last Monday my son Ethan had his second ear surgery to repair a hole that didn't close after his ear tubes fell out. About one month ago he had the same surgery, but the patch to cover the hole didn't attach itself. This time we spent another long day at the hospital. We got there at 8am and came home around 5pm. Ethan did a great job. He was a little scared of going under anesthetic this time around, but in the end he was brave. He was a little crafty too. Like I said, this time he was scared of going under for some reason. We tried to reassure and persuade him that it was alright. Out of desparation we offered to get him something he wanted if he was brave. We said we would get him a Gameboy. He said, "How about an X-box?" We declined and he resigned himself to a Gameboy and allowed the doctor to put him under. He was quite groggy and in some pain afterwards. To make matters worse, we hit rush hour traffic on the way home. On top of the traffic, we had 2 detours to maneuver around. He only complained a couple times about not being home sooner. Now we have to keep him from running, jumping, blowing his nose and roughhousing. Basically, he has to stop acting like an 8 year old boy for at least one to two weeks. So we borrowed our friends' Harry Potter movies and bought a couple new Jack Sparrow books and lined up as many indoor activities as we could think of. Luckily, he likes board games and reading.

The weekend before Ethan's surgery, his little sister Emery went to stay with Gramma and Grampa up north. She is having a great time. She caught a sunfish "all by herself" yesterday. She has gone swimming and shopping and even went to a township meeting with Gramma. I talked to her on the phone tonight and asked her if she is ready to come home soon. She said, "Yeah, soon or maybe later." I think she still has some fun stuff to do.

It's nice for the kids to visit family overnight on occasion. The dinner table has definitely been quieter though. I am finding that I sure miss her when she is gone. I notice her missing in the morning when I make breakfast. I only set the dinner table with 3 plates instead of 4. I see piles of pony tail holders, stuffed animals and 'My Little Pony's' and I miss her.

Tonight, Ethan was to have had a baseball game. He had to miss it due to his surgery. When the coach called out his name inadvertently I had another sense of something missing. I knew he was at home, but it still made me notice that something wasn't right.

Losing a child is something I don't ever want to have to endure. I can't imagine how it feels for parents who have lost a child. I don't want to seem morbid. I know my children aren't far away. But sometimes their absence from a place I'm used to seeing them in, reminds me that something could happen to them. Then what would I do? I wouldn't be the same man. I guess that my family is such a large part of who I am, when one or more of those parts are missing, a large part of myself is missing. It is natural for a father to love and protect his family at all costs. When I think of such things, I think of how grateful and fortunate I am to have the family I do have. I love Lady Di and the kids more and feel greater joy when we are together. Emery will be back home on Friday. I think I'll give Ethan an extra special breakfast tomorrow morning and save a couple dozen hugs for Emery on Friday.


delightful-d said...

You wrote such a beautiful post. You made me cry.
I was missing Emery after 2 hours. I miss her non-stop talking. I miss her hugs and kisses. Ethan has been asking daily "when is Emery coming home?" That is a sign of him missing her too. It won't be long and we'll have chatterbox back and all of those smiles.

Ethan went through a lot on Monday. I hope we never have to experience that trama again. I am thankful he is safe at home with us. You, once again, remained so calm during his surgery. You were my support that day.

Finally, I want to let you know how much we LOVE and appreciate you. LB, you are the most wonderful Dad ever. Reading this post made me "go mush" and realize what a blessing you are to our family. Watching you with our children, makes me happy all over, makes me smile, makes me love you all the more, makes me thankful, makes me apprecite you A TON, and lastly, makes me relaize our children have a wonderful life ahead. You are the biggest part of our family and we thank you for everything. You are the best.... WE LOVE YOU!

Anonymous said...

what a sweet and touching post.

it's hard to imagine losing anyone in one's family isn't it?

thanks for sharing your heart.

Denver Dad said...

Very well written post, Dad Stuff! I know exactly what emotion you're describing and you did a wonderful job articulating that strange kind of longing you get away from your child(ren).

DJ Kirkby said...

What a beautiful post and beautiful comment from Lady Di. You sound like such a sweet family. It is always nice to find that there are other families who'se lives orbit arounde ach other perfectly.

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I'm a 40 year old dad of two. My wonderful wife, Lady Di, and I try to keep the kids from blowing things up here in central Minnesota.