Monday, May 22, 2006


My mother sent me a biographical sketch about my older brother who died when he was only 6 months old. She wrote it at my request and it fills in a void surrounding an event that was never discussed in our family. However, the thing that has been spinning in my brain since I read the story is that while my brother was undergoing brain surgery my mother was alone at the hospital while my father was at the Air Force base flying.

WTF? They'd known since shortly after his birth that the surgery was required. This was the early 60s so I'm sure that this was pretty sensitive surgery. I know several children that have successfully had this surgery in the last decade, but back then? It had to be pretty high risk. Was it really possible that he wasn't able to get leave while his infant son underwent serious surgery? My mother's comment was:
Misplaced priorities but we were young and didn’t have the maturity that we do now.
I'm not sure that that explains it.

I've been thinking a lot lately about my youth and my relationship with my father. Somehow this episode seems very typical of him. Maybe I'll explain in another entry, but for now I'm just confused. I'm speechless. I really can't even begin to imagine what would have kept me out of the waiting room at the hospital.


Joseph's Left One said...

Wow, that is really a telling quote, isn't it? I'm guessing that this "misplaced priority" was not an isolated incident.

Bull said...

No, I think it's part of a pattern that continues to this day.