Hi. I haven’t posted because I’ve been on the road for the last week. It was time to visit the family in California.
I imagine this sort of visit would have been much different if I had kids. As it was, I traveled alone, stayed with my father and went almost everywhere with him as my companion. The only difference between now and thirty years ago is that we’re both much older.
I left Dad home to have lunch with my stepdaughter. I really enjoyed that lunch. Now that we are both adults and her father is gone, it’s more of a “friend” relationship than any kind of mother-daughter thing. It’s two people with some shared history, memories of the same man, and a lot of affection for each other. We talked about school, work, money, men, food. . . She has two grown children and a granddaughter, but she’s single, and her kids are off on their own. It’s amazing to me that I have this smart, gorgeous woman in my life.
Unfortunately my father doesn’t feel any desire or obligation to connect with her anymore now that Fred is gone.
We visited my brother and his wife, who live about three hours away from Dad. Their daughter, my niece, came for a couple hours, but I spent more time with their dogs. With them, there is no awkwardness, just instant adoration.
Saying goodbye to my father just killed me. He’s very old, and I’m always afraid I won’t see him again.
If I had kids and grandkids, I imagine that would we would be one of those big groups going out to eat together, hanging out at one of their houses, talking, playing games, cooking, doing dishes, looking at old photos . . . Dad would be absorbed into this group.
Instead, we both travel solo. Last night, I got seated in the far corner of a restaurant where nobody else was eating alone. The jolly waitress called me “Hon.” I sipped chardonnay and read a book called “Going Solo.”
I should be home and reunited with my dog today. Talk to you soon.