Sunday, May 13, 2012

It's A Small World After All

At what point in your life does the world become small again?

When we are born, the world is a very small place. As we grow older, our world expands. Our daily lives move from just your home, to going to school, to vacations with your family, to trips on your own as you become an adult. Then there is the moment in time when your world starts to shrink. That moment occurs sometime after you become a senior citizen.

The change does not happen overnight. At first, it is only the big things which go by the wayside.  The exhausting foreign vacations are replaced by domestic trips by car. When those become too strenuous, an overnight trip to somewhere close by is the replacement. Eventually, even that becomes too difficult and a big day out entails going grocery shopping and perhaps a trip to Wal-Mart.

When my father retired around 25 years ago, my mother still had a few years until her retirement could kick in. As soon as it did, they began a 3 month cross-country adventure. My family was always big on road trips and my father was a master of planning them. In the years before GPS or the internet, this man would figure out before we left home, where we would be on a Sunday morning, so my mother would be able to drag us to Sunday mass.

In the years after their See-the-USA trip, they returned to their beloved New Orleans many times, as well as the place where we spent so many of our youthful summers...Florida.  Eventually New Orleans became too long of a drive and they spent more time in another favorite spot, Charleston SC.  Several years ago even that trip was too long.  Their last trips consisted of two nights every month in Atlantic City. Still, not a bad feat for a couple in their 80's.

Now the only trip planned for my dad is one in his wheelchair, as he is moved from his bed in the nursing home to his physical therapy session. Except for his brief daily outing to another room in the facility, his world consists of a bed, a chair and a tiny view of the world from the window. His world has once again become very small.

The one thing I hope, is while he sits in that chair or stares at the ceiling from his bed, that he remembers all those days, months and years when the world was as large as he wanted it to be. I hope he can still savor all those five-star meals he and my mother were lucky enough to enjoy. I hope he is still thinking about all those laughs my brother and I had, while he watched our world grow so much larger.

I just hope he can remember.

Love you Pops.


  1. emotions are on over drive this morning !

    Tears and Smiles xo

    "Let It Be"

  2. the joke was(the inheritance will be 4wellwarn tires).Just hurts to see the rapid deterioration of a very proud&good man.Love ya gipp

  3. Well had to grab a tissue for that one. So poignant the circle of life - so beautifully captured here. Your Dad has good company with those memories. xo g