I have been remembering my father lately wishing I could talk to him one more time.
My daddy was older than my mother, and his health was a little more fragile, so we were all surprised when my mother passed away first. That left daddy living alone, and lost without his lifelong companion.
He wore hearing aids and claimed he couldn’t talk on the phone. I knew that communication would be necessary. So we got him an accessible phone with large numbers and amplified sound. He found that it worked very well.
I tried to get by to see daddy every afternoon on my way home from school. And every night he would call me about 9:00 to give me an update on the Braves baseball game (or some other team that was playing that night). We would talk for just a bit, and I would hang up smiling that he was calling me on the phone he said he couldn’t use.
His health problems multiplied and after a week of hospitalization he went to an assisted living facility. He had learned he had cancer and was also having some insulin/sugar level issues. Sometimes he would talk about things that didn’t really make sense. I was most concerned about his thinking.
His first night there, using that phone that he couldn’t use, he called me. But I was out at the time. Our answering machine picked up and I heard him talking to the nurse at the facility as he was hanging up. “Well she didn’t answer. I’ll talk to her tomorrow.”
This was such an encouragement! He was able to call me on the phone! He remembered my number! He was thinking about the next day and making plans, even though his world had been turned upside down and he was staying in a strange place.
I was so glad we got him that phone that he wouldn’t be able to use. Keeping in touch is such a comfort – on both sides of the conversation.