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Tuesday, June 4, 2013

The Last Phone Call by Jackie from The Non-Martha Momma

A guest post by Jackie from The Non-Martha Momma

The Last Phone Call

I recently wrote on my blog about the last time I breast fed my daughter and how I didn't know it would be the last time. It got me thinking about other "lasts" that a person could be un-prepared for; the last time your child crawls before they opt for walking, the last time you see someone, the last time you hug someone, the last time you to speak to someone.

On September 3, 2009 I came home from work, excited to have the next several days off for our trip to New York. It would be the first time my husband and I would get to see our parents and friends since our wedding in July. As I did most days when arriving home from work, I picked up the phone to call my parents to discuss our weekend plans - a BBQ at my parents house, sushi dinner one night (something my Dad and I decided earlier in the week, knowing my Mom didn't like sushi), etc. I didn't expect my Mom to be home from work yet, but called knowing my Dad would be home. To my surprise he didn't answer. I left a message and I believe even said "are you there? Hello! Pick up....Ok, I'll try you back".

I sometimes wonder if my Dad heard my message. Was he in the living room un-able to get to or answer the phone, but able to hear me? Sadly I will never know because around the time I called my father had a heart attack, and while the ambulance did get him to the hospital in time, he died at the hospital.

My last call to him, and I was too late because he never picked up the phone. It made me think of the last time I did talk to him. I believe it was a day or so before. I was telling him that Steve (my husband) thought we had a water leak in our front yard. He told me to tell Steve to pour red food coloring down the drain; if the front yard turned red we had a leak (consequently when in NY for his funeral the water line burst and needed emergency repair). That was about the extent of our conversation. We didn't even end the call with an "I Love You", although "I Love You's" were not exchanged often between my father and I; not even on my wedding day did either of us say "I Love You", so not saying it when we got off the phone was normal. In fact, everything about the phone call was normal.

My wedding was the last time I saw my father, and that phone call about the water leak was the last time I hard my Dad's voice. He was not ill, and was in his early 50's, so there was no way of knowing/expecting that would be our last phone call; the last time we would ever speak. What would I have said if I knew it could be our last time speaking? I honestly don't know.

The call came around 6:00pm on September 3rd. It was my Mom calling from her cell, which I thought was odd. She sounded calm, but the minute she said "is Steve with you" I knew something was wrong. She said she had some bad news, and immediately I thought she was going to tell me that Whiskers, our 18 year old cat, had died or my very elderly Grandmother (my Dad's Mom) had passed away, so you can imagine the shock when she told me it was my Dad.

I never got to speak to my father that day. I like to think he heard my message on the machine. For a long time, and still sometimes it bothers me to know our last call wasn't anything special and about a water leak, but I guess that's the thing about a last phone call; unless the loved one is terminally ill, and any call could be the last; there's no way of knowing it would be the last phone call, the last time you ever speak....until it became the last phone call.

my Dad and I when I was a baby

Jackie blogs at The Non-Martha Momma. She is a new{ish} blogger who writes about being a SAHM, sharing the occasional recipe, craft, tip, and giveaway. She considers herself to be undomesticated (very Non-Martha like); doing her best to keep dust bunnies hidden, laundry fresh, ready to be worn straight out of the dryer, and {a semi-homemade} dinner on the table every night (but will never turn down a take out dinner....which happens at least once a week). She's learning her way through being a "homemaker" and Mom, and working through the bumps along the way.


  1. Oh, i was crying reading this and truly so sorry for the loss of your dad. My dad recently was sick and I have been nervous that something more is wrong, but can't even imagine having him just have a heart attack and be gone without warning. My heart goes out to you on this and thank you for sharing here about that experience.

  2. No words only tears and hugs. I am so sorry for your loss

  3. Thank you ladies! In Sept it will be 4 years since he has passed away, but I still miss him and think about him every day. It was certainly a shock we were unprepared for.
    ~Jackie, The Non-Martha Momma

  4. Wow girl you got me crying. Even though I only met your dad once he seemed like a great guy. I remember when you two danced at your wedding I told Dale I could see how much he loved you.
    Thank you for sharing this story!

  5. Wow girl you got me crying. Even though I only met your dad once he seemed like a great guy. I remember when you two danced at your wedding I told Dale I could see how much he loved you.
    Thank you for sharing this story!

  6. Such a wonderful heartfelt post. Thank you for sharing it.

  7. Wonderful post. My dad isn't big on saying I love you either, but I try to be sure and sneak it in at the end of our phone calls, just so he knows. I was at my mom's bedside when she died, but we never had that one last meaningful conversation, because everyone was too deep in denial. Make sure to say I love you every chance you get. Thanks for sharing! :)

  8. I could barely get through this post, it was a month ago yesterday when my sister called to tell me my dad was gone. the last time we spoke was we were still dealing with the death of my mom last October. He said he was fine, but I knew he wasn't. We were never big on the emotional stuff either but after mom's loss I did tell him I loved him. I'm sorry for your loss and to everyone else for your losses as well.


    Life with RA is a Pain

  9. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing your thoughts and words with us. Absolutely beautiful, Jackie.

  10. Brought tears to my eyes -- such a shock to lose someone when they are otherwise healthy.
    I don't exchange I love you's with my parents often, either. It's just not something that was done growing up. Sometimes I think about things like this happening and want to change that.

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