Stories of caring for elderly parents at the end of their lives while trying to maintain a life of your own.

The Truth is Not as Easy as it Sounds

“No! I want it the right way,” my then-six-year-old daughter Michelle screamed. “How do babies get inside a mommy’s tummy? And don’t tell me anymore God stories.”

Now we all know God plays a major role in the birth of any child. After all, it’s a pure miracle. But my inquisitive daughter wanted the facts and only the facts.

“Honey,” I slowly began. “Remember how mommy always says if I don’t have the answer I’ll have to get back to you? Well, this is one of […]

In the Moment

My dad was never one to gush over his four children, especially not in the way my mother did. Ever the purveyor of descriptive language, there was not a day that went by that she didn’t tell us how special we were. From the tips of our little button noses to our clubfeet, in her eyes, we were perfection. For dad, his admiration came in subtle, quiet expressions – a look in his eye, a smile of pride, a nod or a wink.

Recently, in one […]

The Boy with the Shovel

Consider the use of a shovel: digging, excavating, lifting, and moving bulky items. A shovel is a common tool found in everyone’s garage, but no one knows its importance more than my father.

In a conversation with my daddy several months before he passed away, I watched as he allowed his mind to float back softly in time to 1920 when he was a wee lad of four. Life in San Francisco was simple and poor. Toys were of the make-shift kind, and the mind […]

The World is about Karma

In my profession as a Realtor, I’m constantly shocked over the feelings buyers have about a death in the family home. In most cases, it’s an absolute deal breaker.

When my dad moved in with me, I realized that this might easily be a possibility when it was his turn to go home. At 95, he could pass away any day, any hour, any minute. I knew I needed to prepare my children.

At first, their reaction was typical – “how creepy.” Could they ever sleep […]

Remembering in the Present

My dad was never one to gush over his four children, especially not in the way my mother did. Ever the purveyor of descriptive language, there was not a day that went by that mom didn’t tell us how special we were. From the tips of our little button noses to our clubfeet, in her eyes, we were perfection. For dad, his admiration came in subtle, quiet expressions – a look in his eye, a smile of pride, a nod or a wink.

Recently, in […]

Stories of a Life Past

“Thank God the war came along,” my dad said one evening in September 2011, as I tucked him into bed.

While no one wants a war to be the answer to any difficult situation, I found this comment hysterical, especially coming from a man who devoted his life to his nations as a Captain in the Naval Reserves. In that instant, I realized there were so many things I’d yet to learn about my dad.

In my childhood, I always thought my dad must have been […]