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Tuesday, August 28, 2007

GOODBYES - AND OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF 

GOODBYES – AND OTHER IMPORTANT STUFF

I have put aside almost everything to do with politics, Congress, stocks and market issues, foreign policy, the environment and virtually anything else that seems to trip the collective triggers of Conservatives, Liberals, Libertarians, Socialists, Communists, Traditionalists, Progressives, Religious and Secularists; at least for the last week or so. I found it very easy to do, because I had some really important things that required my attention.

I had two goodbyes that demanded my attention. One goodbye was to my youngest son. He came home on a very short leave from the Air Force, before leaving for his next assignment, half a world away. We will not see him for at least 12 months, and possibly longer. I have written about him before, in previous posts, and will not repeat my feelings about his service. Suffice to say that my pride in him is in constant struggle with my concerns for his safety. I guess that puts me in company with millions of others who have family in the military.

The other goodbye was to my oldest and dearest friend. In High School, we were ushers at the same suburban Chicago movie theatre. We stood up for each other at our respective marriages, and served as Godfather to each others daughters. Like many of our generation, he came home from Vietnam with physical and emotional issues that were never completely resolved, and contributed to his premature death at 61. I shall miss his friendship, and pray he now has the peace that eluded him for the last few years of his life.

My oldest grandson is beginning his college years, and my youngest grandson has begun 1st grade. My middle grandson continues to grow and mature, and is beginning to test his talents and interests. I am so proud of all of them, and eagerly wait for the weekly updates they provide on how school is going, and what other activities have triggered their participation.

My youngest daughter received a clear blood test for her leukemia the day before her brother left for his next duty station. That made four clear tests in a row. Too early to use the “R” word yet, but a hopeful sign that maybe they got it all this time.

As you can see, I was dealing with really important stuff that has immediate impact on my family. Maybe we need a week like this once in a while, to remind us of what is really important. I just don’t want any more goodbyes for awhile. I hate goodbyes.


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