Today is the 1st anniversary of my stepfather's death. It's not really affecting me as I don't normally pay attention to death anniversaries. But my mother, who moved in with us (which is also the time we moved here to Arizona), naturally is feeling a bit down. So we are going out for drinks when she gets off work. Drowning your sorrows - woohoo!
He was a psychiatrist and incredibly intelligent. He was 25 years older than my mother so she knew it was quite likely that he would die before she did. But it was a bit of a shock because it happened fairly quickly. He was diagnosed with lung cancer, which had metasticized from his kidney, last July. He died less than a month later in hospice. I flew out here for a couple weeks when he was admitted into the hospice inpatient unit. We didn't quite realize that it would be over soon - but he deteriorated rapidly and I thank god that I was able to be here for her and him...see him once last time.
Sh*t....now I'm crying. What bothers me more than his dying...we WEREN'T THERE WHEN HE DIED. We had been doing the bedside vigil for a few days, but my mom and I were getting stressed so we decreased the amount of time we visited. It bothers me so much, I feel so guilty. I never asked if he died alone because I didn't want to know.
It's funny, we weren't very close. I hadn't actually seen him in a few years, just talked on the phone occasionally. When he and my mom met I was 15. We didn't get along very well (I was a tough teenager to deal with sometimes). We got a little closer when I got older (and more mature).
He had done amazing things in his life - he really led a full and exciting life. He backpacked through the uncharted areas of the Cascade Mountains, liked sailing, gourmet chef, was a pilot in the Royal Canadian Airforce. Amazing man. He was 86 when he died.