Although it has been months since I last posted, it’s not because I haven’t written. It’s also not for lack of subject matter. Over the past 4 months, the highlights include my father breaking his hip, needing surgery, then also needing a pacemaker, then surviving nearly 2 weeks in the hospital/ICU, 6 weeks in rehab where many days I thought his stubbornness against instruction would overwhelm his stubbornness to live, his finally moving back to his apartment, re-adjusting to some new limitations , then me having to adjust to him at a different (that is, lower) level, and the associated adjustments my family had to make.
As I mentioned, I have been writing. Because I have a tiny audience on this blog, I’m sort of doing it for myself anyway. One main point of the Sandwiched Man blog is to give myself an outlet to process and express events and my own reactions during such an intense time. Some people are able to do this out loud, the first time, and I admire those people – but that’s not me. I often think or say things and shortly afterward think, “Yeah, I didn’t really mean that.” With the spoken word you can’t take things back.
The irony is that the more intense the time, the harder it is to find the time to write. Or the energy. Maintaining a blog requires a lot of energy. Sometimes polishing a bullet point list or scribbling about emotions costs more energy than gained by the zen it can create. So, I’ve been scribbling without really writing. They’re not really the same thing.
But here I am again, stringing sentences together.
I have to admit that a big reason why is unsolicited feedback this past week from two different people: a work colleague from 8 years ago, and a very,very distant family member. They both told me that they loved reading this. It really touched me that they said that. The second one told me at the Park Grill right next to the skating rink in Millenium Park in Chicago where I took this selfie. As is true of most people who take selfies, I am not immune to flattery. That it came from people who didn’t realize that I hadn’t written in a while is not perfect. But — I’ll take it.
As I mentioned, I do have a lot of material stored up for sharing the story of getting through this particular scare. It was an intense experience on which I’ve come out the other side. Or, at least, the other side this time. I realize more and more that as my father goes through repeated incidents that would finish off most people his age, it does take something out him.
Also, this is the Sandwiched Man blog, which is about being a Sandwich Generation man and therefore a different kind of caregiver than most with a parent this age. So, I also have stories about my family during this time, and in particular about trying to remain a father while also being a good son.
So, the blog is back. I’m looking forward to getting back to real writing.