Do you ever experience a moment where you have a sudden realization of something that you already know to be fact? I know. Totally ridiculous. I have them from time to time. Once in a while, when I'm experiencing stress, I get these flashes of reality. I compare these moments to being gobsmacked. Not quite the same intensity of a gobsmacking, but enough to sometimes question my sanity.
For example: I experienced this right before I was to have surgery to repair an incisional hernia. As I lay in the pre-op bay, I suddenly got very scared. I said to myself, "Oh my God; I'm having more surgery. More! I'm doing this, again!" It was so strange! I mean, I knew the surgery was coming. I did all of the prep. Still, it was as if I was having a mini - panic attack. Then, I calmed down. I was back to normal pre-op nervousness, if that makes any sense.
It happened again to me last night. My dad has been on my mind a bit more than usual because his birthday is upon me. I was cleaning out the sink last night - one of the daily chores that I find very relaxing and I never go to bed with a dirty sink; it's just how I roll - and suddenly I get this moment of distraction. I stop scrubbing. I suddenly have this sheet of dread come over me. It's icy hot. I feel the hairs on my arms stick up. And then it's as if I hear my own voice telling me:
"Dad is dead. He's gone. He's GONE."
I rinse my hands and go to the bathroom. I stand there, holding my breath. I let it out and I weep. Quietly. I didn't want my kids or my husband to see me like this, let alone hear me crying. I mean, I don't mind... they would know why I was crying; well, no. They would think they knew and attribute it to my father's birthday reminding me. In a way, though, they'd be right.
The moment passes. I re-wash my hands. I flush the empty toilet. Sometimes we do silly things in order to make ourselves look normal. I even smiled as I flushed. "Fooled them, didn't I?" I returned to the kitchen and finished shining my sink. I then turned out the light, approached my husband, kissed his head with an "I love you, Babe.", he looked up and smiled sweetly at me, and I then came into my room and got dressed for bed, and that was that. Moment: over, and I was fine.
I've had that feeling about my mother, too. I don't know why I experience these moments. I don't know if anyone else experiences them. I'm not ashamed of them, I've just never had it come up in conversation. I'm sure it will now, and that's fine. Maybe I'll learn something. Maybe my husband has these moments, too.
Today, my father would have turned 82. I had a little moment of grief (besides my experience at the sink last night), and now I will celebrate him.
Happy Birthday, Dad!
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