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By BadDoggie (Sun Oct 27, 2013 at 06:55:09 PM EST) fuck (all tags)
I can walk down that road with you because I've walked it before, but I can't make it any better. Try as I might, I can't walk it for you but I can walk with you.

My ex-FiL was a driver by profession; city bus officially, he drove trucks on the side for cash under the table. Not long after the divorce was final, he had a heart attack while driving on an undivided 4-lane road on the way to pick up the morning #4 bus. Still no idea if he permanently took anyone else out as he crossed the median. My ex-MiL -- she who taught my ex- that getting some on the side and lying about it was just peachy -- wrote a letter to my mother looking, well, I guess looking for support. It was awkward.

To my mother's credit, she didn't bin it. I was asked not just for a translation (MiL spoke no Engrish) but for a full explanation of feeling and whatnot. And my mother, recently widowed, our entire family used and spit out by this woman's own eldest, wrote a rather heartfelt reply. The most important line has stayed with me:

It never gets better. But I can tell you that in time it gets easier. But never better.

I expect having to translate with feeling as well as word-for-word, I was forced to consider this more than I otherwise might have done.

And now we're losing another. We, my now family. The one I chose. The family who stick by me. All that's left, really. This is dragging up the past because quite frankly, I'm pissed off (whatever stage that's supposed to be). My kids are being robbed some more. My parents were gone before I'd even met sugar_spun but her parents were... well shitfaaahhr, dey-en't no older than some of my colleagues.

Post-wedding, we're on a scenic drive to the reception through some village. FiL points to the right and asks me,
"Doggie, did you know that no one living in %town% is allowed to be buried in that cemetery over there?"
"Erm... no."
"Do you know why?"
"Ermm... some silly law dating back to James I or Charles II?
"No.... you're not allowed to bury living people here."

The problem with remission is that, like flying aloft, it's almost always a temporary state.

OK, that was enough keyboard masturbation. Let's try this again:

When I was a nipper, nigh on four-anna-quarter or so, were were living in the New House. So it was after mid-October, 1969. But I know I was 4 when it happened. I remember being in the kitchen. My mother, an elementary school teacher, burst into the back door (kitchen) bawling. I was standing on the 3-step folding Upsi-Daisy aluminum ladder near the sink doing... something. Mommy was bawling her eyes out. I started crying and began to ask her, begging her, to tell me what was wrong.

"MY DADDY DIED!" she wailed. I cried harder. I even remember now that I couldn't actually remember Grampa H, but my Mommy was crying and that made me cry.  Hard. And then the worse-er thing happened. My mother screamed at me: how dare I be so upset when it wasn't my father and I barely even knew the man?! And she was right that I couldn't even picture him. I could picture an event where he held me, but I couldn't remember anything about him. Not his face, not his voice, not his smell... he was (in my growed-up vocabulary) an abstract party.

The drive from the Manchester airport to Liverpool can be long, especially at night for a young'un who's been travelling for 6 hours.
"Mildly Naughty, let'S have a game. We'll count the blue cars, but silently, in our heads."
Eager as hell: "OK!"
Time passes. MNP can't hold back. "There's another, Granddad!
"How many does that make then?"
"Seventeen!" she screams so proudly.
"Strewth? Well, ahhh've counted 19. Perhaps you need to look closer."
The puppy breaks any further silence to claim random sheep and coo-beasties in the paddocks and fields lining the M61.

Mildly Naughty Puppy is 4. And, I think, a bit smarter and overall a bit more advanced than I was. Not quite as sheltered. So maybe she'll remember Granddad a bit more than I remember Grampa H. But he'll be little more than a memory.

And that pisses me off. It's not fair. It never is. THERE'S NO JUSTICE. THERE'S JUST ME. Which is fine when you're a fucking grown-up but hard to explain to an innocent, highly empathetic kid who just is not ready for the explnation about why that animal is a pet but that one over yonder is almost dinner.

I can't make this any better for my wife or for my kids. I can't make it anything. Fuck, I can't even make it any better for me. I like my in-laws, and I was counting on a lot of FiL's games and knowledge to get me through the points in life where those lame-ass Dad Jokes just couldn't cut the mustard.

They didn't hang Raleigh high enough.

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Fuck | 7 comments (7 topical, 0 hidden)
Oh, man... by ana (2.00 / 0) #1 Sun Oct 27, 2013 at 07:28:08 PM EST
So sorry ya'll have to go through this so soon. :-(


I now know what the noise that is usually spelled "lolwhut" sounds like. --Kellnerin

I'm so sorry for your loss. by toxicfur (2.00 / 0) #2 Sun Oct 27, 2013 at 09:51:41 PM EST
I will say, though, that the stories, the ones like you tell here -- those will help. It doesn't make the loss for MNP any better, it won't give her the chance to know her Granddad as a human, who grows and changes as she does, but it will give her a connection.

I cling to that. None of my nieces and nephews knew their grandmother, my mom. The oldest was born a week after she died. It is unfair. It's stupid and unfair and it hurts.

But I'm hopeful that, in the way that I know my great-grandmother, she who divorced her abusive husband in rural North Carolina in the 1930s, and then sent all three daughters to college so they wouldn't have to rely on a man, my nieces and nephews will know my mom.

And I hope that your kids will know their granddad, through the stories he's left and the impact he's made.
The amount of suck that you can put up with can be mind-boggling, but it only really hits you when it then ceases to suck. -- Kellnerin

Write-in poll option... by atreides (2.00 / 0) #3 Sun Oct 27, 2013 at 10:23:08 PM EST
...don't let the pigfuckers win.

Sorry about your father-in-law. I'm lucky that the girls seem to be getting familiar with death on their own. But it's rough to have to tell that news to a little one. I dread having to tell the girls about a great-grandparent, much less a grandparent.

No matter what, though, you and yours are in the Tyrant's thoughts tonight.

He sails from world to world in a flying tomb, serving gods who eat hope.

I know how you feel by theboz (2.00 / 0) #4 Mon Oct 28, 2013 at 09:14:24 AM EST
Having lost my father in law violently in 2011 and my dad violently in 2012, I do feel fortunate that my stepdad is around for my kids to have a "grandpa" to experience, but it doesn't take away from the loss.  These types of experiences give me comfort in my atheism, otherwise I would have to think there really is someone out to get us.
- - - - -
That's what I always say about you, boz, you have a good memory for random facts about pussy. -- joh3n
Fuck by hulver (2.00 / 0) #5 Tue Oct 29, 2013 at 06:46:18 AM EST
That's shit. I'm so sorry, for you all.
Cheese is not a hat. - clock
My condolences on your loss by Orion Blastar (2.00 / 0) #6 Wed Oct 30, 2013 at 08:11:10 PM EST
We all walk down that part of the road once in a while. We never walk alone, always have someone with you.

"I drank what?" - <a href="">Socrates</a&gt after drinking the Conium
Condolences. by johnny (2.00 / 0) #7 Thu Oct 31, 2013 at 08:01:19 PM EST
Wishing strength for dealing with the younger ones.

She has effectively checked out. She's an un-person of her own making. So it falls to me.--ad hoc (in the hole)
Fuck | 7 comments (7 topical, 0 hidden)