Calling The Family

After dad was pronounced dead at the Hospice Center, I asked if I could just sit in the room with him for a while before I called my family. It had been such an emotional and exhausting past few days, and I felt exhilarated and thankful that dad passed so quickly so my mother and brother’s wouldn’t have to spend any nights with dad like I had just been through. But, at the same time, I was completely exhausted and drained. I knew when I called my mother, she would want to come immediately to see dad before his body was taken to the mortuary, and I just needed some quiet time alone to absorb what had just happened and prepare myself for the days ahead.

As I sat quietly beside my father’s body, I started praying and thanked my brother Tommy for coming to my aid and helping me pray for dad to let go. I thanked Jesus and the Blessed Mother for taking my father home so quickly. I remember thinking dad is in the presence of God now so I need to pull my focus towards how I am going to help my mother live without dad, her husband and best friend of fifty-seven years. After about an hour of quiet prayer and reflection, I called Bill and told him dad passed and asked him to wake up Shantel and let her know dad died, and I asked Bill to go to mom’s house to help bring her to the Hospice Center. I told Bill I would call mom and let her know dad passed and that Bill was on his way over to her house. I also said I would call my brother’s Danny, and Stephen.

When I called my mother, I simply said, “mom, it’s time to come back to the Hospice Center now because dad passed and is now with Jesus”. To my complete shock, my mother very calmly said “O.K.” I thought she might not have been completely awake or not have completely understood what I said, so I asked to speak with her sister who was staying with mom. Mom put her sister on the phone and I told her dad passed and asked her to make sure mom took her pills and to please bring her up to the Hospice Center so she could see dad before the mortuary arrived to get his body. Then, I called Danny and Stephen.

When the family arrived, I was again shocked at how calm mom remained. She went over to dad, kissed him and told him she loved him. She told him what a good husband he had been to her. Then, she told him not to forget he is to wait just beyond the moon for her. My parents always told each other which ever one of them passed first was to wait just beyond the moon so that the last one to pass would know where to find them. In that moment, even though my mother was calm, she looked so very lost and broken to me. I could see her heart was breaking and it was clear she never thought in a million years she would be the one left behind.

When the mortuary arrived to get dad, we all said our good-byes to him and left to go back to my mother’s house. Arrangements needed to be made and extended family members needed to be notified. Bill was the one who took the lead in helping to ensure all the paperwork was ready, appointments were set and everyone that we could locate knew about dad’s passing. As the hours passed, friends, neighbors, and family members began arriving to pay their respects to our family. It was a very long day and by late evening, when things started to settle down, everyone was exhausted. I told Bill I wanted to stay with mom and asked him to take Shantel home. Mom was sitting quietly in her chair and I knew she was wondering how she could go on without dad. So, I took her hand and said “let’s go to bed mom” and that night, I slept in bed with my mother, holding her hand, because I didn’t want her to be alone on the first night my father, her husband and best friend of fifty-seven years, was no longer on this earth.

Next: My Katie Calls

8 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Tracie Blackwell
    Feb 28, 2012 @ 13:56:33

    Oh Cindy…as I read this, tears were streaming down my face. I loved your dad so much and have many fond memories of hanging out at your house when we were all kids. Uncle Tom was so lucky to have you as a daughter and I know in my heart that he was and always will be very proud of you!!!


  2. Ellen Kaufman
    Feb 28, 2012 @ 14:48:43

    Cindy, I know how very much your Dad was proud of you and loved you as a father would love their daughter. Everytime I talked on the phone or came out to Arizona and visited that is all your Dad and Mom talked about was each and everyone of their kids. We talked in deepth about all of you and believe me your Mom and Dad were and are proud and loved you very much. They did the best they could and yes made some mistakes, but who doesn’t as a parent. We all make a few. I am so glad you took that time alone with your Dad after he passed. Just to have that quiet time to think and be still. It is like your two souls met and told each other your most secret feelings. Your Mom is always telling me how good you are to her and she tries to make everything even with all her children. Cindy, you are a beautiful person and that is not just on the outside. Your heart and soul is full of grace and I know God is very pleased. Thank you so much for sharing this, I’m looking forward to tomorrow’s.


    • beyondcinderella
      Feb 28, 2012 @ 15:56:20

      Aunt Ellen, I am so pleased you are following my blog. I know it is difficult to read sometimes, but it was, and is, my reality and truth of my life, both the good and the bad, the happy and the sad just as all of us experience. And, my only desire in sharing all of this, is that perhaps someone might be helped through a difficult life experience of their own. I especially appreciate you taking the time to leave your comments. I love you.


  3. Gotham Girl
    Feb 28, 2012 @ 23:18:42

    …wait just beyond the moon…that is so adorable. Even more meaning to “our” moon! You are incredible my dear, just incredible. xoxo your frissy


    • beyondcinderella
      Feb 29, 2012 @ 01:07:28

      Thanks frissy for loving me so much! And, please know, that even though I didn’t say anything at the time, because I didn’t know all of our team members really well, when we were in Sedona with our all girlfriend posse, looking for the moon, I kept thinking that my dad must be waiting there behind that big beautiful full moon for my mom. You just never know!


  4. nikki
    Mar 01, 2012 @ 04:39:15

    My said to me and I was a little girl “when I die, I will be in peace and don’t worry about me” remember the wonderful memories you had with your dad.


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