Last week my dad had a little health scare. He is fine now but he had to spend a night in the hospital due to a heart condition. Anyone who knows me or my dad knows we worry about his heart, all the time. It’s interesting dealing with something like this so far away. I live in L.A. and my family lives in the Bay Area. I first found out via text message from my little sister “Don’t know if mum told you. Dad’s in the hospital, I don’t know much else. Mum is with him.” Text messages went back and forth that night and the next morning but Sarah (my sis) still had no news. Of course everything turned out fine. My mom called later that afternoon with a tone of “I know Sarah told you already and you must be worrying…which was something I was only trying to avoid by not tell you” – a tacit I’m not sure I agree with mom…but I know you do what you think is best.
That twelve-hour period was a worrying one. All I knew was that my dad was in the hospital. News of the shootings in Arizona only compounded my wired mood for the day. Those shooting hit a little too close to home as well. The people shot were people doing the same job that I do – it was all just a little troublesome of a day. And days like that lead to reflection. My dad is the person who takes the most pride in the fact that I want to go into public service. He is a very proud American and impressed upon all his children that public service is a noble profession. I can’t imagine what my life would have been like without him and I can’t image what it would be like if he where to suddenly leave.
With all this going on I had a vivid memory running through my head, the prayer my dad would say with us every night before we went asleep and the little handshake that came after.
God Bless Mommy
God Bless Daddy
God Bless James and little Sarah
God Bless Grandma in America
God Bless Nana and Popa and Great Nana
God Bless all my Aunties and Uncles
and all my cousins and friends
and most of all dear God, Bless me, Rebecca Faith Barrett
and keep me safe through the night
After dad would stick out his index finger to meet mine and he would say “Beeeeeeee good.” Our little handshake I found out later comes from the movie E.T.