Re: [MOL] Story [02893] Medicine On Line

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Re: [MOL] Story

Dear PJ:  That story made me cry my eyes out!  Thank you so much for sending
it!!! Love you, Kathy
-----Original Message-----
From: PSerritell@AOL.COM <PSerritell@AOL.COM>
To: <>
Cc: Rbrady2468@AOL.COM <Rbrady2468@AOL.COM>; Hamptons Online E-Mail
<>; Leelake998@AOL.COM <Leelake998@AOL.COM>; <>
Date: Monday, February 22, 1999 4:42 PM
Subject: [MOL] Story

>Sam's Way:::::
>One day my 4 yr old son, Sam, told me that he'd seen his baby-sitter crying
>because she'd broken up with her boyfriend "She was sad" he said "I've
>been sad" Sam added. "Not ever"
>It was true Sam's life was happy in large part because of his relationship
>with my father.  As Sam told everyone, Pa Hood was more than a grandfather
>him they were buddies.
>There's a scene in the Movie Anne of Green Gables in which Anne wishes
>for a bosom friend. Watching that one day, Sam sat up and declared, "That's
>and Pa bosom friends forever and ever."
>My father described their relationship the same way. When I went out of
>one night a week to teach, it was Pa in his red pickup truck who'd meet Sam
>school and take him back to his house.  There they'd play pirates and
>and Robin Hood.
>They even dressed alike; pocket T-shirts, baseball caps and jeans.  They
>special restrauants they frequented, playgrounds where they were regulars,
>toy stores where Pa allowed Sam to race up and down the aisles on motorized
>Sam had even memorized my father's phone number and called him every
>and night , "Pa," he would ask, clutching the phone, "can I call you ten
>hundred more times?". Pa always said yes and answered the phone every time
>with equal delight.
>Then my father became ill. In the months he was hospitalized for lung
>I worried about how Sam would react to Pa's condition: the needle bruises,
>oxygen tubes, his weakened state. When I explained to Sam that seeing Pa so
>sick might scare him, he was surprises. "He could never scare me." Sam
>Later I watched adults approach my father's hospital bed with trepidation,
>unsure of what to say or do. But Sam knew exactly what was right; hugs and
>jokes, as always.
>"Are you coming home soon," he'd ask.
>"I'm trying." Pa would tell him.
>When my dad died, everything changed for me and Sam. Not wanting to
>the questions to and feelings my father's death raised, I kept my
>sadness at bay. When well-meaning people asked how I was doing, I'd give
>a short answer and swiftly change the subject.
>Sam was different, however. For him, wondering aloud was the best way to
>"So," he'd say, settling in his car seat, "Pa's in space, right?", Or,
>pointing at a stained-glass window in church, he'd ask, "Is one of those
>angels Pa?".
>"Where's heaven?" Sam asked right after my father died.
>"No one knows exactly." I said
>"Lots of people think it's in the sky."
>"No," Sam said shaking his head, "it's very far away. Near Cambodia."
>"When you die," he asked on another afternoon, "you disappear, right? And
>you faint, you only disappear a little Right?"
>I thought his questions were good.  The part I had trouble with was what he
>always did afterward: he'd look me right in the eye with more hope that I
>could stand and wait for my approval or correction or wisdom.  But in this
>matter my fear and ignorance were so large that I'd grow dumb in the face
>his innocence.
>Remembering Sam's approach to my father's illness, I began to watch his
>approach to grief.  At night he'd press his face against his bedroom window
>and cry, calling out into the darkness, "Pa, I love you! Sweet dreams!".
>as his tears stopped, he'd climb into bed, somehow satisfied, and sleep.  I
>however, would wander the house all night, not knowing how to mourn.
>One day in the supermarket parking lot, I saw a red truck like my father's.
>For an instant I forgot he had died. My heart leapt as I thought, Dad's
>Then I remembered and succumbed to an onslaught of tears.  Sam climbed onto
>lap jammed himself between me and the steering wheel.
>"You miss Pa, don't you?" he asked I managed to nod.
>"You have to believe he's with us, Mommy," he said. "you have to believe
>Too young to attach to a particular ideology. Sam was simply dealing with
>grief and loss by believing that death does not really separate us from
>we love.  I couldn't show him heaven on a map or explain the course a soul
>might travel.  But he'd found his own way to cope.
>Recently while I was cooking dinner, Sam sat by himself at the kitchen
>quietly coloring in the Spider Man coloring book. "I love you too," he said
>I laughed and said "You only say 'I love you "after someone says 'I love
>I know" Sam said "Pa just said, "I love you Sam," and I said, "I love you
>too." He then kept coloring.
>"Pa just talked to you?" I asked
>"Oh, Mommy," Sam said, "he tells me he loves me every day. He tells you
>You're just not listening."
>Again, I have begun to take Sam's lead. I have begun to listen.
>By Ann Hood from Parenting
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