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My father died last night. My sister, C., called me late last night to tell me. She and I had actually talked earlier for the last couple of evenings about what sort of arrangements would have to be made, as we knew he probably wouldn't live much longer. But we thought it would be longer than this. He got to the point where he could no longer get out of bed. His wife said he had completely stopped eating. He no longer opened his eyes and rarely spoke. Before last night, I had been talking myself into and talking myself out of visiting him again in the VA hospital this week. But I guess I don't have to worry about that now, do I?

I made the mistake of going to work, this morning. I didn't really want anyone there to know what was going on, as I just wanted to keep up my normal routine and stay busy. But I sent my boss a email (I didn't want to discusss it face-to-face) explaining what was going on and that I might have to take a couple days off to tend to family stuff. And the next thing I know, our HR lady and another co-worker were talking to me about it, telling me I should take time off. I lost my composure for a bit and agreed to take the rest of the week off. I returned to the mailroom to get my stuff. Another co-worker came down and hugged me and talked with me and offered to give me a ride home. She was so sweet, but I just wanted to walk for a while and took my normal route back to the subway. Now I dread going back to work next week, fearing that everyone in the office knows about this and will bring it up when they see me. They mean well, I know.

I called my mother after I got home and poured my first drink. I wasn't sure if she had heard the news, but sister S. called her, this morning. I am glad. My mother can be so awesome: she wants documentation, such as a death certificiate, so that she can receive her share of my father's social security benefits. Her argument is that she and my father were married for more than thirty years and that his current wife will get little if anything still being in the workforce and having been married to my father for less than ten years. I really don't want to get involved in any of the money shit but agreed to help her get the proper documentation when I am able.

My angel R. just called and offered to fly out from Utah and attend the funeral with me. But I don't think I'm going to the funeral. I suppose I'll attend any informal family gathering afterward--but, no, I can't stomach morbid christian funerals. My father is gone--I don't want to stare at and cry over the body that made him miserable in his last days on Earth.

I just want all this behind me.

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