Rest In Peace, Billy

It’s been an interesting couple of weeks. I have been trying to figure out what to write about and as I finally have it, it changed. My step-dad passed away this morning. It was not unexpected, he had been sick for a while. Last weekend when I was visiting him and mom, he told me he was ready to go, ready to move on, ready to die. He told me that he had done everything he could to prepare for this and make it as easy as possible on mom. I guess he was satisfied with his preparations, he left this life, on his terms I imagine. That’ how he lived, I’m guessing that’s how he died.

I have mixed emotions when it comes to death. I’m not insensitive to it, I just don’t get all wrapped up in it. In this case, he is in a much better place, so it doesn’t seem too bad to me at all. He lived a long, productive life and will be missed. I just don’t really have the emotions any more when it comes to people dying. I think this might be what my psychologist referred to in one of our recent sessions when he said I show signs of being dissociative. I do tend to detach myself from things. It doesn’t mean I don’t feel it, I think it just means that I don’t let it affect me. The hardest part will be helping my mom. But I’m in a good mindset now to help.

Five weeks ago, or so, I would not have been able to help. I was a wreck in my own mind, not well. I was trying to salvage any sanity I had left at the time. It was five weeks ago that my step-dad began his final journey to the end of his life. He had been in and out of the hospital for years, but this was to be his swan song. Once or twice the last few years it appeared that he might be the end of life, but he was stubborn. He would only leave on his terms. And five weeks ago it was apparent that he was going to die sooner rather than later. And five weeks ago I would have been worthless to my mom. I know it sounds weird, and maybe wrong, but this is much better timing than five weeks ago. I can actually be of assistance. I feel like a dick for saying that, but I know some of you will understand.

See, the thing is, if I know I’m not in a good place to be able to help I shouldn’t be there. If I can’t function, how am I supposed to help anyone else? I know it looks bad to some, those few that don’t understand. But I have become well enough now to be able to say ‘No’ if needed, if I need it for me, for my own mental health. It’s not selfish, it’s reality. I can honestly say that now, today, and for the foreseeable I am much better and can be there for others as needed. It’s all a process, and I’m making it through it. It took a long time for me learn this: I have to put myself first sometimes to be able to be there for others. I make no apologies for that anymore.

A quick obituary. Billy was born in West Virginia in 1935. Died in Alabama today. He was a veteran of the U.S. Army, serving four years in the 1950’s. He was very active in coaching and scouting baseball for many years. He was captain of the deep sea fishing boat Lady Tina and a respected member of the Destin fishing community. The last decade or so Billy spent his time in the collectibles business, frequenting auctions and finding treasures. He is survived by my mom. He is also survived by many other family members too numerous for me to mention here. Rest in Peace, Billy.

To the rest of you, Good day, God bless.


17 thoughts on “Rest In Peace, Billy

  1. I think this is really beautiful…and a wonderful Mother’s Day gift really. For you to be so in touch to say these things I think is more than most people can do. I’m sorry for the loss, but he sounds like he knew what he wanted…and being ill is just so awful. Being a paramedic, I always knew when people were just ready. I’m so glad you are doing well and can be there for Mom! 🙂

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  2. I am sorry for your loss. I don’t think there is any shame in recognizing when you are better available to care for others. There is much truth to be gained by understanding that we cannot save another until we have saved ourselves. Perhaps God and the universe knew this as well and prepared Billy for a time when you could be present for your mom. I am also glad that you are currently in a good place.

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  3. Sorry for your loss, Dave. But more sorry that you seem to feel the need to apologize for your feelings! You process things, the way you do, at your own pace. (This is something I’ve learned in therapy, myself. 😉 ) Cyber-hugs, fellow blogger. You sound very healthy, at least to me. And, again, I’m sorry for your loss. Peace.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I am the Mom and totally glad Dave was there for me. I will be in the “basket case” scenario for a while longer I am certain. But it is comforting to know you are only a phone call away, Dave. Thank you so much for steading a very unstable Mom. I love YOU!!

    Liked by 1 person

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