Wednesday, December 10, 2008

My Dad and the light switch cover


This light switch cover may not look Christmasy, but read on and you will see it's Christmas meaning.
1995 was not a good mental health year for me. Shortly before Thanksgiving that year, I went into a severe depression. It started around the first of October and by the week before Thanksgiving I was not doing well. Without going into great detail, I felt that the whole world, including my precious 12 year old daughter, would be better off without me. Some good friends found me in a hotel that I have yet to remember driving to and took me to the hospital. My dad signed my commitment papers into a local psychiatric unit where I was diagnosed with major depression. Not a fun time.
I got out of the hospital 2 days before Thanksgiving and it took awhile before the medication fully started to work. I got up each day, went to work and came home and sat in my favorite blue chair. I didn't feel much like doing anything but stitching. No TV, no holiday fun, nothing. I wasn't sleeping much then either.
I started working on this light switch cover for my dad and mom for Christmas. They had bought a new home and I thought it would be pretty. I finished it Christmas Eve.
Now my daddy loved Christmas. He loved decorating (not too much, just the right amount). He loved buying stuff he knew we would like (again, not too overboard, just the perfect little something). That year we went to his house for Christmas Eve.
My medication was working well. I felt like my old self, but not quite as energetic.
Daddy had snacks laid out and was happier than I had seen him. He kept things quiet, but fun. We told Christmas stories about past Christmases and about funny things that had happened. All very low key, but really memorable.
We opened presents and Daddy opened my light switch present. I showed him how to put it on the wall. He had tears in his eyes and said it was beautiful. It made my heart sing. Then he said the MOST AWFUL THING TO ME.
He said, I want one for the living room, one for all three bedrooms and another in the dining room. Oh my, that is a lot of stitching.
But the day after Christmas I rushed out to JoAnn's for their after Christmas sale. I stocked up on light switch covers and patterns. I planned to do one for his birthday in April, then Mother's day, Mom's birthday, their anniversary and then Father's Day. I was so excited at how much joy it would give my dad.
Daddy died that following March, suddenly. I never got to do another light switch cover for him. But I have the first one with me in my house (my Mom is disabled and lives with me). I still smile when I think of how happy that little piece of cross stitch made my Daddy.

20 comments:

GoldenAngelsWorks said...

That is an absolutely wonderful Christmas memory.

Nancy said...

A bittersweet memory, thanks for sharing.

Penny said...

That was absolutly beautiful. Thank you for sharing.

kaghos said...

A memory of a good Christmas is a
everlasting one, and the bad one's you wish they would go away.

yes that is a very touching memory,
always keep that close to your heart.

Carolyn NC said...

What a precious memory & story - very moving! It's the little things that count sometimes, isn't it?

crossstitchbibs said...

What a beautiful memory to have - my dad passed away 10 years ago when my youngest daughter was 6 weeks old. I sure do miss him.

Thanks for sharing your memories.

Rene la Frog said...

You needed to put a warning label on that one...get tissues before reading. What a beautiful memory. Proves just what I said that gifts from the heart are the best ones.

Sadie said...

I so need to put a box of tissues by the computer! That was a really moving story Donna. It sounds like your dad was a great guy. And yes, it certainly does look christmassy when i look at it now! Thank you for sharing that.

sales said...

What a nice if bittersweet memory.
HEidi-ILCS

Annie said...

What a wonderful story! Thank you for sharing.

Threads and thoughts said...

Thank you for sharing this precious Christmas memory. It was so touching

Barb said...

Great Christmas memory. The light switch is so pretty

Carrie said...

Rene's Kleenex warning wasn't high enough...LOL What a wonderful menory to have of your dad, and what a great thing for your friends to do to help you through your rough time. We are never truly alone....never.

Hugs

Meari said...

What a great memory, Donna.

J Rae said...

Thanks for sharing your very touching story.

Cindy F. said...

Oh Donna...my eyes just burst into tears. What a wonderful father he was. What a beautiful gift you made:)
I just went through the same with a family member this week.

craftingaplenty said...

What a beautiful and heart felt christmas memory. Thank you for sharing. I also would put the light cover where i could see it.

Shelleen said...

what a great memory and it brought tears to my eyes

Ashrei said...

"We're making memories", my mom has always said. Thanks for sharing yours with us. I love it.

Debbie said...

Memories are so precious to all of us. Thank you for sharing one of yours.