This afternoon my father drove away in his truck to his mountain house (about 1.5 hours away) where he'll stay for a couple of nights before heading back to Charleston (about 5 hours away from his mountain house). I KNOW he's so glad to be heading home, to be independent, and to be healing well! I'm glad for him. We had a wonderful 12 days together. In spite of all the medical hubbub, he and I genuinely enjoyed our time together. We did not exchange a single cross word the entire time we were together (except for one night when he kicked me out of the hospital room because he was so worried that I would be going back to the hotel too late....he made me call him as soon as I was safely in the room! Once a protective father, always a protective father! Even then, there were no cross words. He just ordered me to go, and I did.)
I heard stories I'd heard before, and new stories as well. Stories of him hitchhiking all over the South in the 1960s and 1970s, and all of the adventures he had. Stories of his first white Christmas. Little tidbits of his life. So fascinating.
Anyhow, I'm exhausted--but I'm staying up too late just enjoying the fact that our little family is "just us" again. Plus, I am trying to wrap my head around Valentine's Day--all I have is that I'll make heart-shaped pancakes in the morning! (Tuesdays are a very busy day for us--we're gone all afternoon for lessons.) Back before the surgical storm hit, I did purchase some special Valentine candy at Target, so I'll leave those out for my children tomorrow. This evening I began the process of "post-guest-tidying" which is mostly stripping beds, reclaiming little corners of the house, and washing towels, but it will take a few days to get the house back to normal.
I was very grateful to spend so much quantity and quality time with my father. It was my privilege to look after him during this time. I don't think we had spent so much time together like that in many years! Sometimes life hands you lemons but you do get lemonade.
And I'm still sleeping in every day!