fathers

we see you

night after night, without fail

after a long day’s work, you are here in his room

you, who can barely boil water, learned to mix medications, and to prepare his tube feedings

you patiently remove shoes and socks from uncooperative feet, ready the hospital bed, and gently lift your youngest son from his wheelchair

you speak…talking to him about your day, his…about the farm, and music for the long night, as you undress your boy. it’s no easy task…were  he to stand, he’d be taller than you, now

gently, with a father’s strength, you stretch stiff muscles and straighten resistant joints…all the while speaking and comforting. this is your evening ritual

you manage the feeding tube with one hand, once unfamiliar, and now just another part of your day. you tell him what you are doing every step… medications, a meal…water. water. simple, yet sustaining. the most basic of needs

pillows are fluffed and strategically placed, the quilt drawn up and tucked in

you kiss your lingeringson, and he relaxes into sleep. he will open his eyes at 4am, when he hears your bootsteps approach on the wood floor

he waits for your good bye at 5 am, and listens as you quietly close the back door and begin your day again

this is not what you planned or envisioned, it just…is

you are a father, caring for his son with love and with grace, dedication and determination

you are amazing

©2018

 

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