Monday, November 19, 2007

Thanksgiving Woes

My dad has hurt his back. He has a pinched nerve and has been in constant pain since Tuesday of last week, 6 full days and counting. He had an MRI over the weekend and got the results today. He was given some harder/better drugs and is scheduled for surgery on the 30th. I have been very worried about him and have spoken with him or seen him every day.

We have all been planning to go to Richmond for Thanksgiving. The entire family always gets together for Thanksgiving and if you have been reading past posts, you know how much I have been looking forward to going! My dad will not be able to make it, he can't spend 3 minutes in one static position, let alone 3 hours in the car. My husband offered that we would also stay in town and celebrate the holiday with my dad and his wife.

Dad is waffling on this offer. While he does not want to be alone, lonely and without celebration on Thanksgiving, he knows that he is going to be sleeping and moving from the couch to the bed every 15 minutes to help change his position for maximum relief. He knows that he would not be good company. So we have decided to see if the drugs help him any by tomorrow, if he is still feeling really badly, we will go to Richmond and then have a Thanksgiving dinner with him after his surgery. If he is feeling slightly better, we will stay here and celebrate with him.

I am torn on all this. I don't want my dad to be alone (with only his wife) for the holiday that, for our family, is all about family. But, I have been looking forward to this trip for MONTHS! This will be the first Thanksgiving since I have been married and I will be able to see family that was not able to make it to the wedding. I look forward to seeing how big all the babies have gotten and catching up on the lives of my aunts, uncles, and cousins. I want to her all the gossip that I have missed out on.

I know that if we go, I will spend the whole time feeling guilty that dad is not only in extreme pain, but has no family to spend the holiday with. If we don't go, I will feel resentful and spend the whole time thinking about what the rest of the family must be doing. What I really want is for the drugs to help dad so much that he is able to make the trip. If that can't happen, I want dad to "force" me to go on the trip. How selfish is that? I want what I want and I want my poor, in pain dad to help me feel less bad about my selfishness. I feel like a really horrible person right now.

As I type this, I think that I have decided that I am not going to Richmond for this holiday. I would not have a good time, knowing that dad is alone. This way, I can do some major cooking and have a more intimate gathering, just the 4 of us. The food really is the real reason for the day right? There is another Thanksgiving next year and I did just see most of the family at the wedding. It will be fine - I am still a horrible, selfish person though! Doing the right thing, does not always erase something evil.


  1. Shoot. That's a tough call. i hope the medicine works and you can still go to richmond.

    don't feel guilty. this is just a crappy situation. you are not a bad person. it's no one's fault.

    i think that you will probably be upset no matter what decision you make, unfortunately! whatever happens, i hope you end up having a great holiday. :)

  2. I think you should go to Richmond and see your family. You and Smug-Hub can have another Thanksgiving on Friday or Saturday with your Dad and his wife. Or you could borrow a RV and your Dad could walk around on the trip to Richmond. Or give him really good painkillers and let him sleep on the drive over. Just a few random thoughts....

  3. Sweetie! That is a tough situation, but I know you--you will make the best of it whichever way you turn. I think Utenzi is right though...go to Richmond on Thanksgiving and do an intimate gathering with your dad over the weekend. It is a win-win situation!