Friday, July 31, 2009

Home and the Heart

Joe Montana was dead serious about wanting to come for a visit to Florida, and though I was slightly apprehensive, I was pretty excited about the idea. He was looking at flights, I was thinking about available weekends and we were talking almost every day. Then things with my dad started to take a turn for the worse, and I asked Joe to put the FL trip on the backburner. I knew that I’d be seeing him much sooner than I had expected and for the worst possible reason.

The Mother called me on Saturday July 11 and told me that I needed to book a ticket home ASAP, because she didn’t think my dad had a lot of time left. I booked a ticket for the following morning and proceeded to do a combination of tidying my house, running last-minute errands and trying not to panic. A few hours later, The Mother called with the News. It was the last thing I expected to hear. It was the last thing I wanted to hear.

I don’t want to get into the next week too much. There was family, memorial arrangements, obituaries and boundless kindness from friends, neighbors and the community. It was hard. It was more than hard. Every day crept by.

During most of the first week that I was home, I didn’t see Joe Montana. But I was communicating with him often, mostly via text. He wasn’t pushy, he wasn’t insensitive, he wasn’t smothering. He just wanted me to know that he was there if I needed anything. I’m not usually open to support from much of anyone, much less from a man that I don’t know all that well. But as the week wore on, I found myself more and more comforted by his presence and I realized that I really wanted to see him.

That Thursday night, before my dad’s memorial on Saturday, we invited a slew of friends and relatives that had come into town out for a night of drinks and remembrances. I invited River and her husband and of course, I invited Joe Montana. I don’t think that I can adequately describe what it felt like to see Joe when he arrived; he put his arms around me and it felt safer, more comforting, more of a relief than anything else had up to that point.

Lyrics of the Day

"We strangers know each other now, as part of the whole design. Oh, hold me like a baby that will not fall asleep. Curl me up inside you and let me hear you through the heat." Suzanne Vega Gypsy

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