Go to the hospital to visit him, because of course we would have to get back on the road soon, since we left late (another story – etiquette of the road) and then sat on the porch for hours talking.
Get to the hospital – the architecture was beautiful (I’m a sucker for architecture), it looked better than a normal hospital.
Get to the room and before we could go in we had to put on a gown and gloves. I can not lie, I got really scared then. Not because I could get something, but because I was scared of what I might find in the room, since my aunt scared me with the “I don’t know what we may find when we get down here.” I never really faced death – except for my step-dad, which was sudden – a heart attack. My grandma died when I was really young and if I knew someone was dying, I would prepare myself for it – my uncle (my real one) is sick, and I have been trying to separate from him, so I will not feel the pain, but I can’t do it I love him too much to do it, he is constantly in my life, I will have to deal with it when it comes and I am scared.
Back to the story I do not want to talk about my Uncle any more.
See Uncle June is like my mom and Uncle he was able to work both sides. The men in the family never chose sides. They did not give a damn they just all hung together. Oh and let me say this, I am not using Christians as a bad term. I love them wholeheartedly, I am the person I am today because of them. My ethics, values and morals are all because of them. They were not the Bible thumping Christians that judge and say this or that person are not a Christian – TRUST, I was waiting for the hammer to drop, when I got pregnant with College Boy, but it never did. I know other friends who got pregnant and they had to stand in front of their church and ask for forgiveness and stuff, not I. They live their lives in a righteous way. Do they make mistakes? Sure. They are human. See this is why I told you I had problems with my sister always claiming to be Christians. As I told her, you do not have to tell nobody you are a Christian all the dang time. People can tell by the way you carry yourself and how you act. She got real pissy, but who cares I got tired of her telling me she was Saved, Sanctified and filled with the Holy Ghost – I can put something right here about that, but I am going to leave it alone.
Uncle June was cool. When we first moved to Virginia, we moved about a mile from his house, so I remember going over and visiting. I remember him as being a fast talker and the life of a party. I loved to be around him as a child he was a trip. He did not bite his tongue, he talk straight, except when he would tell me crazy stories. For instance, once when he was in jail (I have no clue when he was I guess I wasn’t born yet), but he was telling us how you can dispose of a body in jail by cutting a person up and then breaking up the bones in a pillow case by banging it on the toilet to break it up. After doing that you can flush it down the toilet. GET THE FUCK OUT OF HERE. Aren’t they going to notice the other person missing? Will the guard hear you making all that noise? Whatever dude. I know it was damn lies, but that was the type of dude he is/was he would have you dying laughing. Pure comedy. The last time I saw Uncle June was at my other Uncle (Butterfly brother) funeral. I also know he was using drugs (that is why his wife left him) and that is how he contracted AIDS.
So, I am dressed head to toe, can feel the tears coming and I just told myself you need to man up, its not about you, his wife, son, and grand-daughter is here let them have their time as well.
The door opens.
He is sitting in the bed and he has his food in front of him. He looks smaller, thinner then I can remember, but he looks the same. He started smiling and said, its so nice to have family care about you. Look at this.
My dumb ass god-mother Butterfly says Hi. How are you? You remember Urban don’t you?
Why this fool roll his eyes and say of course I know who that is, that’s Ma Dukes oldest girl.
I so wanted to slap Butterfly. Yes, I have not been around, but hell I did not know they were so tight. Plus, what if he did not remember me.
Everything was lovely after that. He was the same ole Uncle June, he ate his food, and the stuff he didn’t like he hid in other containers or threw in the trash, but he did eat a lot for us and then he said, Hell if they wanted me to eat this shit they would have put some flavor in here. He used some other flavored words, but that’s him. The nurse came in and laughed it up with him, because he is such a character, everyone loves him. He has been getting major headaches and when one came on, we did what my family does best and what I have not done in a long time with them. Pray together. It was a beautiful prayer. His wife led the prayer.
I felt really good leaving and glad that I came. I think what really made it good for me was the fact that he was still himself. Later, he asked who the hell turned the damn television off, and we were like well we came to see you, you need to spend time with us. He said, the hell with that I can look at ugly people any time. He then said, I can’t believe you asked me do I know who the Hell she is. The only thing she did is get darker. Damn girl you been in that damn sun with your red self. I just smiled and said Uncle June, I don’t know why she asked you that, I knew you would know who I was (if he wasn’t sick I would have said something about the color comment but whatever).
We left the room so him, and his ex-wife could spend some time together. Then we left and while we were leaving I noticed her walking by herself (minus her son and grandchild) crying. Now let me tell you, I know I am selfish emotionally sometimes, and I would run the opposite way when someone is crying because I do not know the exact words, but I went to her and I consoled her because she has always been so good to me. I thought it was beautiful to see them interact with each other the way they did. They are divorced and from what I hear he has a girlfriend that lives down there and I don’t know if she was told to stay away this day or what, but I just thought it was nice that two people who were no longer together could put their differences aside to be there for one another.
After leaving the hospital, we stop by the house and talk to everyone before we got back on the road. It was nice to hug family members that haven’t worked my nerves.
Once back on the road I thanked Butterfly and told her I am so happy she called me and I am glad that we had a chance to talk. She told me that she feels like once Uncle June is gone she will no longer have any connection with that side of the family. He was the glue for her. I found out that when she was younger she would go down to King George, VA (where that side lived), and would visit for the summer and that she loved it until she got older and didn’t want to go any more. That when she was old enough to drive he taught her and that she has been going to Rocky Mount for the past couple years to visit him. So, I understand why it was important for her and I am glad I went with her.
The ride home was HORRIBLE. The talk was cool, she wants to learn how to knit and I actually forgot that she sews. She was talking about different sewing machines and I was like um, when did you learn how to sew and she brought up the Spring concerts at church and them ugly, I mean beautiful dresses she made for me and my sister. So maybe, I might get that sewing machine after all.
I got home at 12:40 and my husband was in the living room waiting for me and I went and gave him a big hug. He asked me what was that for and I told him for loving me unconditionally and for being here. Of course he is a smart ass like me and said I need to go to NC every weekend if I was going to come home like that. Ya’ll don’t know I have been a handful for YEARS and he has always been there and has allowed me to be the strong/stubborn person that I am, if I had this blog years ago, you would be rooting for his ass to leave me.
There should be some rules of the road and we will be discussing THAT.