22 hours ago
Tuesday, January 5, 2010
Thanks for being there for me, Dad
Today is my dad's 87th birthday—feel free to send him happy birthday karma. Here he is with eight-month-old Max.
The fact that my dad is 87 is awe-inspiring.
It also scares the heck out of me.
I don't call or visit him nearly as much as I should; explaining the reasons for that would require several cases of red wine and extensive psychotherapy. But one of them is surely this: I distance myself from my father now to mentally prepare myself for the day when he will be gone. I am inherently terrified of being left alone in this world without my parents. I will have Dave, of course, and my sister, but otherwise, the weight of raising a kid with special needs will lie solely on our shoulders. Dave's family has never been there for us in the selfless way that my parents have.
Raising a kid with special needs thrusts you into being a mature, über-responsible parent, one who has to deal with big concerns, big problems, big doctors, all the biggies. Yet I continue to take comfort in knowing my mother and father are there for me, and that I myself am still someone's child.
Posted by Ellen Seidman at 12:01 AM