We had dinner with my dad, his wife Cheryl and my brother Scott and his wife Patty. It was an interesting meal. I think that I may understand why my dads wife is the one who always talks to me on the phone. I may be wrong but it really seemed that she was working hard to keep my dad looking good. My dad didn't recognize my brother, I don't know if he would have recognized me if Cheryl hadn't greeted me first. She was wispering into his ear a lot of seemed to keep him going along socially. My dad spike very few words to me and most of my connversation was with his wife. She asked the questions and showed me pictures of their granddaughter (almost a year old and I didn't know anything about her).
I didn't get many pictures because they took off right after we ate. I got a few pictures when we were waiting to be seated. Sarah and Benjamin didn't get any pictures with him.
My gut tells me that he has some level of dementia. At one point my dad went to the restroom and I asked Cheryl how he was doing. She told me great. I sat back and thought that it is a shame that she can't talk to me. That she has worked so may years at pushing us away so that "their" kids would be front and center. What they have both missed out on. Relationships with us and their grandchildren. Their grandchild is almost one, their great grandchild will soon be two. What a beautiful child they are missing out on. Cheryl missed the boat. She thought that there wasn't enough room for love for all the children. She thought that having more kids around lessened the love for each child. She has it all wrong. Love does not have limits. Love has no boundaries. You can love deeply one child or 11 children. What a great opportunity they have missed out on.
Michelle was fascinated by my dad but sadly I don't think he said one word to her. She remembers having a grandfather before she came into care.
I wish that my children had an opportunity to have a relationship with a grandfather but that just isn't going to happen. There was a time that I was mad about how my dad rejected us for his wife and new family. This trip was good for me in that I see that I no longer have that anger at my dad or Cheryl. I guess that time has helped. What do I feel? Acceptance, sadness, awareness that my dads time is short and I will not be a part of that journey.