Hi, there, Dear Reader. It’s afternoon in Lithia, Florida, on Tuesday, July 12, 2022. It is a torrid summer day in the Tampa Bay area. As I write this, the temperature is 90°F (32°C) under cloudy skies. With humidity at 63% and the wind blowing from the south-southwest at 11 MPH (17 KM/H), the heat index is 100°F (38°C). Today’s forecast calls for mostly sunny skies and a high of 94°F (34°C). Tonight, we can expect mostly clear skies. The low will be 76°F (24°C).
This part of the month – July 12 to July 19 – is usually the hardest part of the year for me, since I tend to be reminded – in ways large and small – that this was my mom’s last week alive in 2015.
Seven years ago, Mom returned home after a short stay at the Kendall Regional Hospital in Miami. She had suffered cardiac issues related to her failing health after having been bedridden for five years. On July 12, 2015, Mom was in relatively good spirits – for someone with severe cognitive impairment – and, as I wrote that day on Facebook, “she has hospice care arranged.”
I knew then that my mom was going to die in the then-not-so-distant future. I had come to terms with that in the months before, seeing as to how her health was deteriorating, both physically and mentally. I suspected then, and I suspect it now, that she hung on a little longer because she could not bear to leave me, her favorite of her two grown children.
I am still trying to come to grips with how I felt at the time because I was at war not only with my half-sister over things that were going on at the time and things that were going to happen once Mom was gone, but with my own heart and mind as well.
I don’t want to devote a lot of time and space to this specific issue, so I’ll give you a list of the major emotions that I felt during the week of July 12-19, 2015:
- Anger (mostly at my half-sister, but also over the indignities Mom had endured over the past five years since her back surgery)
- Anxiety (I was going to be a homeowner soon, if not de jure but de facto, plus I was not sure if I wanted to have a relationship with my half-sister after Mom was gone)
- Confusion (On the one hand, I didn’t want to lose my mom, but on the other hand, her quality of life was shitty, and her memory and ability to recognize people was fading)
- Exhaustion (physical and emotional)
Anyway, as I write this, I have my Internet-connected smart TV set tuned in to the January 6 Committee hearings. I can’t say I have been listening to – or watching – the hearings the way I should have, but I decided to check in on them because today the topic was the connection between far-right groups like the Oath Keepers and The Proud Boys and former President Donald Trump.
I suspect that none of my Trump-supporting friends and acquaintances are watching the hearings, or if they do watch, they’re probably saying that the hearings are “a political witch hunt’ or a “kangaroo court” – two descriptions used by Trump in his angry “truths” over on Truth Social.
I caught the hearings late, but I did get to see two former pro-Trump witnesses who testified that they participated in the January 6 insurrection due to their loyalty. Not loyalty to the Constitution of the United States, not loyalty to the United States. But loyalty to one man. And that man is Donald Trump.
One of the witnesses – a guy who lost his job and suffered other consequences because of his participation in the January 6 Capitol attack – said that he fears that if Donald Trump is re-elected, things will get worse, not better. Trump will end American democracy as we know it. He also said he regrets his participation in the Stop the Steal riot and that he does not believe Trump’s “Big Lie” about the 2020 elections.
Before I close, I would like to recommend a new book by my long-time Epinions friend and fellow blogger, Thomas Wikman: The Life and Times of Le Bronco von der Löwenhöhle: Stories and Tips from Thirteen Years with a Leonberger. Thomas published this loving tribute to his beloved dog, Bronco, earlier this month, and I figured that since I just ordered my own copy, I would encourage you, Dear Reader, to go to Amazon.com or other places where you might buy books online and get one, too.
And, with that, Dear Reader, I’ll sign off. Until next time, stay safe, stay healthy, and I’ll catch you on the sunny side of things.