Steve Jobs and why I have to move home.
So, Steve Jobs is stepping down from being CEO of Apple. And frankly, it makes me want to weep…but not for the reasons you might think, despite being a solid Apple fan.
Steve Jobs has the same kind of cancer that my dad has. His is just more advanced…hence my sadness.
Have you seen how he looks now compared to how he looked just a few years ago? He looked like my dad a few years ago – healthy, kind of overweight, cheery. Now…he looks worn, too thin too fast, exhausted.
I don’t want to see Dad look like that. Ever.
My neurologist two days ago didn’t understand why we wanted to move close to my parents since Dad has so many years left (then again, this same guy didn’t know enough about carcinoid cancer…he said that he was sure there were carcinoid cancer survivors but was apparently unaware that it never goes into remission…ever). But…seeing Steve Jobs the way he looks now, hearing him resign, strengthens my resolve.
Will Dad seem healthy for a few or even several years? Probably. But then…his sickness will start taking over. And he doesn’t have the money that Steve has to fly to Switzerland to buy himself a new liver…the likelihood of them doing a liver transplant in a cancer patient when they don’t know where the source of the cancer is…not very high.
Do I want 5 years of making happy memories with my dad while he’s still healthy and can enjoy life? What about 8? What about 2?
I want as many years as I can have, damn it. He’s healthy now for the most part…and I want to share in that now. Yes, I will be there once he gets sick and I will take care of him as best as I can and make his last years as happy and fulfilling as I can. We all will. My brother already lives close enough to do that now…but I don’t.
I’m only 2 hours away…but that’s too far away. Especially when there’s an emergency. Like when he had his biopsy done…I was going to leave work early anyway to be with him…then I got a call from my mom. Her voice was calm, but shaking. “Your father is in the emergency room. He passed out on our way home from the biopsy. His heart rate is very low, and they don’t know what’s wrong.” I flew out of my office in a blind panic, jumped in the car with my husband…and didn’t get to see him for 4 hours (2 hours on the road, and 2 hours waiting at home before they could call and tell us if we could visit our not). If I’d lived close by, I could have met them there, like my brother and his wife did.
I do understand why people think that there’s not a rush for us to move close by. He’s not dying anytime soon, most likely. But…but I need to be close. And his excitement at the prospect of having his little girl living close (and my mom’s relief at the thought) make me positive that it’s the right thing to do, not to mention that whole “honor your father and mother” thing. But I don’t need a command from God to make me want to be there. I love my dad…I’ve always been Daddy’s Girl. I love my mom – she’s probably my best friend at this point. She needs me. I need them. I need Dad as long as he’ll be here…longer than he’ll be here. Our family has always been very close-knit. We’re all we’ve ever had. And in times of crisis, we’ve always come together. And I’m aching to do that now.