There is none of that going on in my life right now.  The only thing I have control over is how cute my outfit looks and that’s because I dressed myself this morning. But aren’t we all one car accident away from not even being able to do that?  There was a 27 car pile up in Georgia yesterday. Damn.

Yes, I control some of my choices.  I chose to quit my job and move to a state whose politics are reliably anti-progress and whose history includes lynchings (don’t they all though?). I chose this life.  This life, however, is currently highlighting just how little control I have ever had over anything.

My grandad has moments where his entire body locks up and says, “You wanted to go this way? Ok. Cool. We got chu.  SIKE! You ain’t goin nowhere mutha fucka. You can just stand here till I make you fall.”

That’s messed up.

This is one of the hardest things I’ve had to do in a very long while.

I can’t control that’s he’s getting older and this will probably get worse.  My first job out of high school was working for Arden Courts as a caregiver.  It’s one thing to give care to a complete stranger.  It’s another to care for your grandfather in a clinical way. And I’m not even the one doing most of the care giving!  It’s hard just being here.  I sat across the table and watched him eat yesterday.  Tears fought their way to the front of my eyes.  I wouldn’t let myself cry because it’s unnecessary and kinda rude. –I’m looking him in the face and crying at the state of his life.  If someone did that to me I’d punch them in the throat.  — I’m mourning the man I knew and not celebrating his life as it has become.  He is still very funny and quite biting.

I cannot control my grandfather’s health. I cannot control my life or what happens to me.  I can, however, control “my response to it.”  I am learning a great deal by just changing how I respond.

3 thoughts on “Control

  1. Caregiving is hard. Being around caregiving is hard. I am stunned by how gracefully and openly you are handling this situation. I have similar memories from my dad’s illness; I know I can’t understand what you’re going through, but I am glad to listen with compassion any time. ❤

    Missing you. You're irreplaceable.

  2. This post (as you can see, I’m enjoying reading your blog IMMENSELY) really hit home for me. I just lost my brother at the end of last month, and had to come to a similar conclusion. I had to understand that it wasn’t really about mourning his death, but more so about celebrating his life. Yeah, I had HEARD that before, but it was (and is) difficult to put into practice. I actually spoke at his funeral at the request of one of my daughters. She told me, Dad, if you speak at the funeral, don’t say stuff to make them cry, say things to make them laugh.” With her guidance, I did just that. I took the power FROM Death, and placed it squarely in my control. I CHOSE not to play the role of victim. Guess what? I looked over at my mother on the front row while I spoke…..and she even had a smile on her face a few times.

    • Ty, This is so powerful. And your daughters? Whoo, there is wisdom there. From what I’ve read on your blog and what you wrote here, I can tell that they will be and already are, amazing. When my grandfather passes I hope I am able to do as you did, because the celebration of life is such a beautiful event.

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