Gonna recommend you to the spirit in the sky
That's where you're gonna go when you die
When you die and they lay you to rest
You're gonna go to the place that's the best
No. 333 on Rolling Stone's 500 Greatest Songs of All Time
My mother and father for their church picture just a few years ago. You can see the beginning of my father's illness in his face and in the way he is standing.
My Dad had a really bad day on Thursday. I think some new medicine we gave him to help him sleep better had the residual effect of making him more depressed during the day. You have to watch your patient's medicine all the time for side effects.
Anyway, something was troubling him that day. He cried and said his life was all but over and we should all forget about him. I tried to talk him out of it, but that didn't work and I couldn't bear it for long, so I had to just hold his hand for a while, and then I had to leave.
The next day, Friday, after we laid off the sleeping medicine, he was feeling brighter. That afternoon the family's long-time pastor came by for a visit. I had been there in the morning, and I was doing paperwork for the family trust in the afternoon, so I didn't see him. He comes by about once a month, a wonderful thing for him to do since he is now retired and almost as old as my father. He was my pastor when I was confirmed into the Lutheran church lo those many years ago.
Today, my Dad told me a funny story. He said they had been having a "tie up" or a "clog" in their lines (they did not have this, but I listened on) and that our Pastor H told my Dad they should pray about it. And my Dad said they did pray about it and ... the clog went away! "It was amazing," my Dad said. "I'll bet the Plumber's Union would have been mad if they knew." We laughed together.
His brain was speaking to me metaphorically I think. He knows there is something wrong with him and I think he and the pastor prayed that he might be better, and barring that, that he might have the strength to endure it. Suddenly my Dad felt better: the pastorial Drain-o had done its job and my Dad transformed his problem into a plumbing issue, something an engineer like my Dad could understand.
And he was much happier today and we were singing again. Always a really good sign.
The Pastor might be surprised if he knew the plumbing story my Dad is telling. But maybe he would tell me that a Higher Plumber had actually done all the work.