February 26, 2010

an unhealthy man

I found out Thursday morning that my dad had a heart attack on Tuesday evening. I can't say that I was terribly surprised, as he's always been significantly overweight, he smokes like a chimney, eats whatever he wants and his general attitude is that he's invincible to the forces of nature and is always testing the theory. I had kind of assumed that he would end up living to be 120 or something, just to spite everyone who may have thought otherwise or ever told him to diet or quit smoking. And the heart attack didn't kill him, so maybe he still will.

I haven't had any contact with my dad for a long time. Going on thirteen years now. For a long time I didn't have a relationship with anyone on his side of my family, but for the last couple of years I've been in touch with his sister and her family, and I've seen my grandparents a couple of times as well. My Aunt Carolyn is the one who called to let me know. She left me a message Wednesday evening, and I checked the message the following morning. (I'm terrible at retrieving voicemail- be forewarned.) There are usually a couple of messages in there from my mom, sitting unchecked for days, and they're always novella-long, so I'm often uninspired to listen to them.

When I heard Carolyn's message, I was confused about how to react. I mean, it's my dad, and of course I don't wish him dead or anything, but I've also moved on from my life with him in it. I didn't really feel anything, which of course made me feel kind of guilty and heartless. It sounds so awful to say that I don't care that my dad had a heart attack, but I kind of don't really care... and before you say "whoa, that chick clearly needs therapy," let me tell you that I've had some, and that's how I've gotten to the point I'm at. I think it's actually kind of a good thing, as crazy as that sounds!

So anyway, I called my Aunt and she said that they got him to a hospital and went up through a vein in his leg to his heart and found a clot. They "roto-rooted" it out, as she put it, and he's recovering. He should be fine, and now that he has a fresh clean artery, I have no doubt that he'll be around for a long time more.

***

When I started writing this yesterday, it seemed a lot more important for me to get it out and off my chest. Today, it just seems trivial and I can't think of anything inspired to add. So, it is what it is. Estranged father avoids death; daughter carries on. The end.