Polka dot pillows…

From whence they came, I did not know, but they have brightened up my day….and I want to say… thank you.

Here they are in all of their splendor

The unexpected box arrived while I was away. Brooke who was checking in on the house asked me if I had ordered anything from Wayfair? I responded with ,

“not that I can remember?”

Although there was that time I did decide to go on the Shopping Channel in the middle of the night… and ended up with an array of products, that when morning light arrived, didn’t seem near as appealing or needed as they did earlier on.

Never do that at 2:36 am.. This is a time for perhaps window shopping, or browsing, but don’t, and I mean, ever, have your credit card sitting in one of your hands, at the ready. It’s too tempting..

Before you realize it, boxes will arrive on your doorstep, that you would never have purchased unless you had been shopping in the dark with only the light of your phone to guide your transaction.

Then to return your items… no … no… no…may as well just take a trip to Value Village, and donate the items.. I can’t stand returning stuff.. it drives me nuts…a re gifting may happen should the occasion present itself… but returning items.. I think I would rather have a root canal…or a baby, and both of those hurt.

A polka dot private tub suitable for a wee bird to bathe in…🐞

I did find out who sent the pillows. It was my sister in law, Rhonda. Such a kind gesture. I was really touched by it.

Unexpected kindness is such a 🎁 gift. Kindness should be a given I think, but apparently there is a need to state “ always be kind.”

Last Friday Mum was moved into an LTC home. It became available, and had an opening, the day after she had been in quarantine for two weeks at her previous residence . The precise timing of it all astounds me.

We were given 24 hours to have her moved from the retirement/ memory care unit, to this new residence, where they are better equipped to care for her advancing needs. She is now at Bethany Lodge, in Unionville, Ontario.

She was transferred via ambulance, where I followed behind in her car, and carried her essential belongings in multiple black plastic garbage bags, and her CD player, with gospel hymns, and as many family photos as would fit into the box. As I trailed along behind her, in my makeshift car caboose, it was a tear filled journey. Also lots of cries out to God for her comfort and care in this, her next steps.. Just realizing that I just wrote “steps” brings an uncomfortable lump to my throat. Mum no longer is walking.. I can scarcely even wrap my brain around that fact.. Maybe she will with some PT, but right now… she doesn’t even have the desire… brutal reality.

I was greeted by the assistant of care nursing, and had to sign multiple papers for her admittance into long term care. Even those words feel hollow as they roll off my tongue… long term care. It feels depressing. It was a surreal moment, as she waited on the transport bed, with her furry mechanical pet dog sitting atop her lap.

Mum and Brody

Today is June 20th. It’s been 13 years that my Dad passed from this earth, and went to his eternal home in heaven. He slipped peacefully away, and at long last was released from his body that harbored Parkinson’s disease. It was “ a cruel disease,” my Dad said. He was 69 years old. He suffered a long time with it. It was unbearable most times to watch him slip away from us inch by inch, day by day.

He was so much more than just the disease that finally took his life. He was a Father, and a man to be depended upon. He was respected and loved by many. He was a friend, and he cared about people. He wanted to know you. What were your hopes and dreams, challenges, and sorrows. He was not a person to sit on the fringe of life. He dove into peoples’ cares, and made them his own.

He was generous and kind, and was not a “ respecter of persons.” He cared about your character. He taught me that it mattered who you were when nobody was looking. How did you cope, what did you believe in. This mattered. Not how much money you had, or what you possessed, what car you drove, or how many degrees you had.. but …” who were you?”

I had a good Father, I would even venture to say a great one. Such a 🎁 gift. So much of who I am, and what I value today, comes from the lessons that he taught me. His words, and guidance have echoed in my cranium as I am now in middle age. I realize that I would have had PD for 4 years now, if I was my Dad. That’s a sobering thought.

He was good to my Mum. He loved and cared for her, and provided a stable home. You could depend on him. When he got sick, she made sure that he had the best care, and was militant over how he was looked after.

It is vitally important to advocate for our peeps when they can no longer do this for themselves. The responsibility of carrying out someones’ wishes weighs heavy. You want to get it right.. have no regrets. I want to love well.. love big.

Father’s Day is tomorrow, and it’s a day for remembering, and being thankful. I’m grateful for my grandfathers, Harold Hayhoe and Arnley Denzin, my Dad, John Hayhoe, and my children’s’ father, Lorin Brandon.

We need more than “a few good men,”. We need men with integrity and grit, and who won’t quit, when life gets diseased, and is filled with land mines scattered with the debris of despair.

So many hearts are on my mind today, as loved ones remember their Fathers and husbands, some still alive, and some have proceeded us to heaven.

We remember “our Fathers who art in heaven…”(just a little creative license there..😄)

Keeping the laughter going, with the corny Dad jokes, told over and over, amidst groans of, ” oh Dad not another bad joke.”

I miss the laughter, and the voice.

Even though I can’t as yet go back into visit my Mum, I’m trusting in those people that have care over her.

It’s a releasing of the tight grip of care and control. It’s never easy to loosen my tightly gripped knuckles from the rope of knowing, and being a part of her care.

Life certainly is a series of letting go, and releasing.. ” Catch and release,” perhaps… not that the person is ever really caught, but the kindest gesture is in letting go, for one an all.

The tightest grip just leads to aching and empty hands.

I’ve heard people say,

” if I could only have one more moment with my Dad, hear his voice, touch, and smell the scent of his aftershave, then that would be enough.”

I heartily disagree… that to me would just be a teaser. I would always want more time.. There is no ready to say ” good bye.” I’m never ready for that. But I can release you.. into the next part of your journey, and I can anticipate with hope, when I will greet you again.. there are no “good ” “byes,” there are only… ” so long… until next time..”. This feels manageable.. slightly…and so I go with that.

Happy Father’s Day to all you Dads out there. Your role is so important. It’s the most important thing you can do..and to the men who pick up our pieces, who Father the Fatherless, who live and love boldly, who are willing to lead by example, not from harshness.. but from love , and to the men who forgive others, and themselves.. we need you in our lives.

It’s a weekend to remember important men in our lives…

Men who will stand …


7 thoughts on “Polka dot pillows…

  1. Oh Jill, this one was a real tear-generator. I cried for you, and for your beautiful memories, and ways of expressing them, your mum, patiently enduring the next step, you and your brothers in that last photo, quietly observing this next step and WITH HER. So lovely to see. And I cried for my own memories, for my own dad, who was much as you describe yours. It’s so true, we are never ready to say good-bye. Only, “see you soon” with a feeling of gratefulness for all that he passed on to me.

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    1. A lot of memories of your Dad & Mom came flooding in as I read your post. Jean mentioned that your Dad was so thoughtful and kind in helping her and other water ski when her parents ran Rocky Crest for a number of summers. He was a person I always admired and looked up to.

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      1. Thank you for those memories.. whenever others share those it’s like a priceless jewel gets added … I love that..I know that he had much respect for you and Jean as well Frank..

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  2. A lot of memories of your Dad & Mom came flooding in as I read your post. Jean mentioned that your Dad was so thoughtful and kind in helping her and other water ski when her parents ran Rocky Crest for a number of summers. He was a person I always admired and looked up to.

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  3. Your dad was a great man. He always treated me like a daughter. John and Harry were such good friends. I miss them both.

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