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November 21st, 2006

The Day the Music Died

Christmas music that is...

Bless Me, Father! It has been thirty-seven days since my last smoke! This is far and away probably the hardest undertaking of mine in the last few years...
And I dearly want one now. Seeing's how they are just in the next room...And I really, really want one...Wanted one for DAYS now.

Dunno if it's because I'm still having some sleep issues (which I am) or I maybe am slipping back into the abyss. I feel like I'm standing at the edge again, and I can see it starting to crumble away. Holiday time is not good for me in any case.

Cherish the time you have with your parents - because one day, trust me, they won't be there...Here's why:

The holidays have not really been a good time for me since Mother died, even though it has been a good many years (19!) since that event. I'm not sure they will ever again be a time of unabated joy for me. Haven't been for 19 years. There are Christmas Carols that I can barely bear to listen to and others that I cannot tolerate at all. (And I used to love them - so beautiful - so joyous.) This has actually gotten worse over the years - not better. So if you are playing Christmas music and I turn away or turn my head, or worse, leave the room, it is probably because I am shedding a tear or two...And I don't want to share, much.

I am not what you would call a religious man. Spiritual, perhaps. But not religious.

I (of course) am happy for the kids and love to watch them light up as they open a gift they really wanted. But it ain't about the gifts anymore - not for me. I could do without that particular aspect of the holidays. It just seems to get worse every year. I want, I want, I want! But I digress...

Between Mom and my Grandmother, they were the ones that really made the holidays special for me. Even when Mom and I were at our worst, I knew that at Christmas time (well, most of them anyway) she would welcome me if I cared to cross her threshold. And at the time prior to her death, we were starting to really rebuild a relationship that had been neglected for a long while. We were starting to speak on a fairly regular (for us, anyway) basis.

Then she got really sick - and her husband at the time - neglected to tell me just how serious it was.

I got a phone call from cadona, who at the time was visiting FLA, telling me that I had better get my ass in gear and get home, because Mom was really sick and asking after me. I am the oldest of the three of us. And she wasn't gonna make it. cadona had taken The Offspring to meet her in the hospital. And I understand they had a fairly nice time getting to know each other. I am glad she had at least, got to meet her first grandchild. I can only wish I could have been there to see it...

I could sense the urgency in her voice. Mom was already in and out of lucidity. I immediately made arrangements at work to get time off, and was frantically searching for a flight home. When I got the next call. The one that everyone dreads...Mom had died. Before I could get there.

I was broken inside. And pissed. Really pissed. I felt ripped off.

Here's one of the parts that still gets me. It wasn't even the holiday season in 1987 yet when she died. But I had a sense that maybe we were gonna have a really good holiday season between the two of us. We were finally gonna reconcile whatever had gone bad between us. (There was plenty - on both sides of the fence) And then that...

That was the year the music died...for me...

I did get home for the funeral. And then we took the body to Illinois for internment. She flew...We drove...She even had another funeral up there!

I miss her still. And I guess I always will.

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