May has become, for me, a month of ambivalence. May brings with it the end of the school year and the hope of summer -- which certainly can not be discounted when one lives in Illinois. There are other things, however.
My father's birthday is in the first week of the month. He would have been 91 this year. It is hard to believe that he has been gone for over ten years. Fortunately many memories remain vivid in my mind. I've shared several of these memories in my blog over the past nine years. Among the most vivid is the moment when the family gathered around my father's hospital bed as his life support system was turned off. At that point he only had what appeared to be random brain wave activity. Thankfully, he passed away immediately.
In two days, we will remember my father-in-law, who passed away 16 years ago on May 21. Again, it was a very difficult time as my father-in-law was barely surviving on blood transfusions and called the family together to say farewell and watch over him as he passed away. After all the family that could showed up at his home in northern Wisconsin, he stopped receiving blood transfusions. We took turns staying with him as we watched his body slowly and orderly shut down over the course of a day. He passed away peacefully in the early morning hours.
Today marked the final time that I would drive one of my kids to high school. My youngest daughter, Erin, has her final day tomorrow. At the end of the afternoon tomorrow, I will officially be out of the high school business. Never fear, however, as all three kids will be in college next school year and I will likely be driving Erin to school four days a week at the local community college where I work.
The next week and a half of work should not be too bad, and then it will be off to Las Vegas at the end of the month. Aside from my already generous vacation time, I am being forced to take additional time off -- some "use them or lose them" days. Other trips planned for June and July include a trip to Phoenix (and possibly a short jaunt to Reno to visit Tony Bigcharles) and a trip in the van with the family to Memphis and New Orleans.
And yes, before it is said in the comments section: "first world problems."
I hope you are having a great May!