an aging parent and children
I had been at the hospital with my father all day, as he struggled to overcome symptoms of an acute illness. He didn’t need me there, not really, but I wanted to be there, to hold his hand, refill his mug with ice water, pat his shoulder, help him to his feet. I rang the bell to his floor, and a nurse let me in.
I brought my laptop with me, and Dad and I spent several lighthearted minutes surfing the Web for videos of various Bruce Springsteen shows we’d seen together. I was delighted when my father began to tap his foot under the covers and sing softly under his breath.
But I was due at my youngest child’s school, where I had volunteered to be the guest reader for his fourth-grade class. My five older children had all gone through this school, and I have been a guest reader there perhaps as many as 10 times in one year. Surely, over the course of the years, I have set some sort of guest-reading record. I love doing it.