Tuesday, October 26, 2004

One hospital visit won't stop the show

My father has recently finished a stay at the hospital after suffering from a heart attack while mowing the lawn. I know what you're thinking "oh poor you,you must be so worried about your father" well not so much. As a matter of fact, had I not been called by my brother letting me know about my father's hospital stay, I probably wouldn't have went to see him at all.

Why the bitterness? Why the total lack of concern on my part? Simple. My father hasn't spoken to me in about four or five months. He got remarried, got a new family and chose to only talk to my younger brother totally distancing himself from my sister and me.

I did feel somewhat obiligated to see him however. He is my father after all and I suppose I'd feel bad if he died and I didn't make peace with him.

So this is what went down.

Me and D. went to the hospital friday night around 8:00 since that was the last chance for visitng hours in ICU. We got there and the nurse told us that they were putting something in and we would have to wait. We went to the visiting room and waited.

During this time,I realized that we were sitting right by my dad's new wife and her daughters.They were talking up a storm and were quite loud.I wrote D. a note asking if I should introduce myself and he didn't have an answer. "I don't know what to do,but I know someone who would." He called his sister on his cell phone and I told her my plight. Of course, in my telling her, I completely forgot how much my voice carries. D. politely reminded me by coming out of the visiting room saying "they can hear you in there!"

Needless to say, mortified could not even begin to express how I was feeling.I had just completely badmouthed a person I didn't even know and I had still not met her face to face. I hid behind a snack machine and then tried to lower my voice some more. After the conversation with his sister was over,I came from behind the machine running right into with Dad's new daughter. I said "hi" to her which was greeted with a confused look.

Fast forwarding to about 20 minutes later, the people that they (dad's wife and kids) were talking to had left. It was silent for a minute. Now consider this, if you were one of two groups of black people in an area, wouldn't you assume that you're there to see the same person? Guess Dad's wife missed class that day.

"So, who are you here to see?"
"I'm here to see L.J, my father."
"Who?"
"I'm L.J.'s oldest daughter."
"Oh, you mean Jay."
"Okay?"

After a few minutes of introductions and small talk, we were able to see him. I can honestly say that he looked surprised to see me and D..The nurse came over and asked him who all of his visitors were. He beamed with pride as he introduced his(3?)daughters and his future son-in-law. Now although I was touched by this gesture, I was somewhat pissed that he would have lumped those girls into the same group as me.

I was his daughter first.Before these girls were even a twinkle in their momma's eye, I was here first.

Then they invited us to their home and dad let me know that "I'm still his daughter." What a big pile of bull!

I just don't get it. Why do these girls treat him like he's a great dad? Why do they give him kisses on his cheek? What has he done to desereve such love and devotion?


D. was joking around,asking me if seeing dad in the hospital changed my mind about letting him walk me down the aisle when we get married. I told him that it'd take a whole lot more than one nice hospital visit to change my mind about something like that.

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