Hey ya'll I have been working on that book about my life over the last ten years. Don't know if it will ever sell but I am hoping people might get something out of it. I have listed the links to the previous couple of chapters I have posted here. Enjoy.
Chapter Four - When Angels Go On Duty
As I waited in the front lobby I chatted with Denise, the radio station’s receptionist, about the excitement of her recent wedding and honeymoon. She was thrilled about the rest of her life with her new soul mate. It was ironic how she reminded me of my mother and the love she had for my father years after divorcing him. A love that ringed in her voice as she demanded we all drive to Florida to be by his side at some Ocala hospital.
“John will see ya now Rog” Denise said as she put down the receiver to her phone.
“Thanks, and just keep lovin’ that guy of yours. Hopefully you’ll be better at it than mine did me.” I smirked as I thought about the final divorce papers I had just received that day from my wife laying on my desk.
I pushed the door open slowly and walked into John Piccirillo’s office, the radio station’s general manager. He was fumbling with some papers and mumbling to himself about having too many irons in the fire as I stood in front of his desk.
“What can I do for you, Skinny?” John asked with a slight frown on his face.
I shut the door, sighed, and said, “John, my mother just called…my father….,” I choked back a huge lump in my throat as the reality of my situation suddenly sunk in, “My father has had a heart attack…and the doctors think he’s going to die. My mother wants us to….to….ah….”
Before I could push the last of my sentence out through my emotions John got up from behind his desk and put his arms around me and said, “Whatever you need son. You know I have always thought of you like one of my own, go be with your family. Take as much time as you need.”
I started to cry and just hugged him as we stood there in silence until I could compose myself. I will always remember John Piccirillo with fondness for that very moment. He was a light in the darkness for me as I was still reeling from my recent divorce and now just a few months later my father lay dying over 800 miles away. It was an emotional overload and I could feel myself just falling apart inside.
That moment played in my mind as I sat at the foot of my father’s bed listening to the medical machinery moan a melody methodically as it filled his lungs with air and pushed drugs into his veins to keep him alive. I thought, “Damn it dad, why couldn’t you have been that supportive?”
When my wife decided to leave me out of the blue and take our kids I called my father for some advice and a few kind words. But what he said was, “I’ll send ya a check for a few thousand. That’s what you want anyway right? Cash? I told you not to marry that girl. This is the last time I’m going to clean up one of your mistakes. Get your life together.” I was appreciative of the money but I just wanted some words of encouragement that tomorrow would be a better day. Guess that was my dad way of giving me a “pep talk”.
My selfish thoughts of self-pity were interrupted when my mother walked into the room sipping on some coffee. “Hey honey, why don’t you go to your dad’s and get some rest," my attempts to hide my exhaustion must have been failing, "Your brother and I will sit with him. If he wakes up we’ll call you.” She said softly.
I looked up at the clock it was almost 10 at night. “Are you going to get any rest mom? You know if he wakes up the doctors will call us.”
“I know, but my Bob needs me. I stayed up with you when you were little while you suffered from those ear aches. I can do this.” Mom replied.
I was too tired to disagree but I was concerned for my mom. This marked day number four since she drove all night to get here from North East, Ohio. She had been cat napping in hospital chairs and downing coffee and cigarettes to keep herself stimulated and alert in hopes she would be the first light my father would see, if he ever opened his eyes. She would only leave the hospital to quickly swing by dads to eat and take a shower then she was right back by her ex-husbands side. I don’t think a team of horses could have drug her away from her Bob. She was always devoted to him even after all his years of bad choices and sins. Just like an angel she forgave and forgot all of my father’s trespasses and stood by his side as if his past acts had never happened. I struggle to this day to be more like her in that fashion.
I got up, kissed dad on his forehead and said, “You better get up dad. You only have about twelve hours before I sign the paperwork to cut off your life support. Don’t you put me in that spot you old…” I turned, gave mom a hug and headed to dad’s house for some much needed rest.
As I walked to the elevator I could hear my mom softly talking to my dad, "I'm here Bob. I haven't gone far. I'm right here. Come on now, you've been sleeping long enough, it's time to get up. Roger, Brian and Charlotte are all here to see you. They love you and you know I still and will always love you."
The next morning I was bruptly awoke to the sound of my father’s megaphone of a caller ID speaker box hollering out. I am sure he had bought the damn contraption from some infomercial that targeted the hearing impaired senior population of Florida. I was surprised he didn’t have two of them, one for each end of the house. Guess he hadn’t acted fast enough to cash in on the buy one get one free offer from the infomercial. The electronic voice echoed through the entire house slowly registering the words in my brain,
“Oh-Cal-Ah Gen-Er-Al Hos-Pit-Tahl”
I sat straight up and answered the phone thinking the worst had finally happened, “I'm here! Mom?”
“Get down here! Get down here now! I told you Bob just needed 24 hours. He woke up! He just woke up. My Bob woke up,” she cried over the phone “Did you hear me? My Bob woke up! Your father is alive!”