March 24, 2021
Today, I got to see my dad! It has been a long time. He lives in California and is really good at visiting us a couple times a year, usually in October and March. That all changed when Covid hit. Thankfully, we made a trip there in the summer of 2019. My dad then made his annual visit in October. He was planning to come back in March of 2020, but we all know how that went! He cancelled that trip and rescheduled for last summer. His thoughts were the same as ours, “All of this will be better by summer.” Well, it wasn’t! He postponed again, hoping to make it home this last fall, and again he had to cancel.
I could tell he was getting frustrated and lonely. Like many others, he lives alone. Thankfully in California, the weather was better than it is here in Illinois. When places were open, he went golfing once a week with friends. He would sit outside at the local Mexican restaurant, drinking a beer with friends and helping the owners make it through the tough days. I was glad he had people around, but he was still lonely and a bit stir crazy. I am sure we can all relate!
A couple of weeks ago, he got his second vaccination and felt safe to fly to Chicago. I could hear the excitement in his voice. My sisters and I are also fully vaccinated due to the fact that we are educators or work in the heath field, so we were excited he was coming.
While this trip may look different, it will be great for all of us. Usually we try to get together every night he is here, to do big family dinners. Cousins will play, the adults catch up, and my dad just sits back and soaks it all in. We decided that there wouldn’t be as many nightly gatherings, but we would all make it work. Today, my dad sat at my house while my kids were remote learning. It helped him to feel needed, gave my kids time with their grandpa, and saved me from juggling. I grabbed dinner for all of us from our favorite pizza place and we ate dinner together.
I dropped my dad off at my sister’s house, where he will stay for the next 3 weeks. It is days like this that I wish he lived closer. I am sure he feels the same way. It is days like this that make me realize just how important family is! It is days like this when I realize how much I have missed his hugs!
I am so thankful for days like this!