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November 18, 2005


Chris Owen

A fitting reminder of how parents come in all shapes and sizes.
it seems the more feisty they are, the more diificult to show love but still know love!

Career Break Guru

I was interested in what you said about comments on your blog. I have just started writing mine and it's interesting to see who comments and what they say. I post quite a variety of stuff and I guess some appeals and some doesn't. It's here if you want to take a look: http://careerbreak.blogspot.com


Jory, reading this made me cry...and even laugh. Although my father is not cut entirely of the same cloth, I do know what it's like to be a daughter who never hears the compliments directly...only third-hand after the fact. This is an incredible tribute to your Dad. Surely he must be smiling at you from wherever he is, thinking: you did good.

Koan Bremner

When I die (which I will, invincible and immortal though I sometimes feel) I hope that someone will write something even a fraction as moving (and loving) about me as you have just written about your father, Jory.

He's still alive, while you remember him, write about him, and talk to him - alive in your heart. I sense that you already know this.


Oh, Jory, what a wonderful piece.

patti digh

thanks for your honesty - about the process of dying, even quickly... about the anxiety and awkwardness, the cruelty of the process, the unknowing and the gone. thanks for taking the road.

Gonçalo Moura

I came to your blog after reading your "More Space" essay... And the first post I read is this. Which ressonates with some similar situations that I've been through in the past.

Well, just let me say that this text is honest. Not sincere, honest. So honest that it feels like a punch to the gut...

Wish you only the best, and that you get through this difficult time the best you can...

Bob Patterson

Jory, I am a friend of your Moms. My thoughts and prayers have been with your family. You are a wonderful writer, and have great skill in bringing the reader to your world. I look forward to meeting you at some point in the future.

Jen McClure

Jory - This post is so beautiful and moving. It must have been difficult and yet felt liberating to write it. Just wanted you to know your writing really touched me. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as you go through this time together.

Steve Sherlock

My father is still with us but my mother left almost as suddenly many years ago. You wrote of many of the same things that occured then. This is a good reminder that for all our differences, male/feamle, our individual preferences for religion or politics, in life we are more alike than not. Death just makes this more obvious.

Jory, thanks for sharing this.

Yvonne DiVita

I am speechless. I am overwhelmed wishing I could hold you and your Mom ... and cry with you and laugh with you, and just feel all the feelings that being a daughter, a Mom, a wife, and a woman, bring to the surface at times like these.

Your Dad was a character, Jory. This immortalizes him - but I think you have more to say. Will be watching for it...

Britt Bravo

This is a beautiful piece. I am going to send it to a friend who lost her father not that long ago.

Lisa Stone


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth

Then took the other as just as fair
And having perhaps the better claim
Because it was grassy and wanted wear
Though as for that, the passing there
Had worn them really about the same

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet, knowing how way leads onto way
I doubted if I should ever come back

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence
Two roads diverged in a wood
And I took the one less traveled by
And that has made all the difference

Robert Frost

Thinking of you - L



As usual, a wonderful story. Pity it was under such sad circumstances. My condolences to you and Joy.


Yes, you are the boss, girl. I'm glad you realize that now. As someone who will soon join your Dad in the ranks of the unliving I wish you a long life and a prosperous one. I hope you always chase your dreams....


Well done, Lady! Thanks for sharing these stories......


Mary Cary

Your writing is an amazing gift. I've been thinking about your family so often these past few days. And, I knew checking out your blog was probably the best way to find out how Joyful handled—and continues to handle—it all. Please give her a hug for me, and have her do the same right back to you.


Jory - thinking of you and your family and appreciate you letting us in to share some of your special and heartfelt experiences take good care...

De Novo

A tremendous ode to your father as well as an excellent commentary on the relationship.

Warm wishes to you and your family.


You and your mom are always making me cry. Sorry for your loss, I feel your pain. I sent this piece to my sisters who chose not to speak with my dad anymore. Maybe they can see that other dads are as quirky as mine (he’s only my dad now). You and your family have been very courageous. Great comments from your readers: I agree with and echo their sympathy and compliments.


From the tiny snippet you shared, two things are obvious: that your dad was a fine writer, and that he had a profound depth of feeling for his family.

How wonderful that you get to carry on this great work, but in your own, completely different way.

I am so sorry for your loss, but somehow I feel like as long as you are around and writing, he is here, too.

Thank you for your shining example of grace under duress.

Cousin Nicole

Brilliant. You have the perfect balance of words to explicate the ironic, unbalanced DJ family. We are unique. I am overwhelmed at the way your words have come to life in what is my “Uncle Joel”, your father. This is moving and I can imagine the hysteria which erupted in the funeral home, due to the distasteful jokes which no one can get enough of; even in the most serious of times the DJ clan comes through in tradition of making light of a situation. When reading, the part that struck me deep down,

“I think being comatose for his last few days was convenient for Dad. He wouldn't have to entertain the people who kept coming to visit him. He could be alone with his thoughts. And then, at night, after they left, he could die. He wouldn't be a spectacle any more.”

This is a prefect portrayal of Uncle Joel, he was the show all of his life, and yes, my dad has some great stories about growing up with Joel as a big brother, but I do not think that the show genre he was presented with at the end was his preference. I think that you are an amazing writer, I laughed, I cried at the great story that is The DesJardins Family.


Jory, I read this post the night you posted it and have returned to it several times since -- it is truly wonderful on so many levels.

First, it's just beautifully written, with the right details and views from a distance...really telling the story of you and your dad without editorializing or lapsing into chronology. It's an honest tribute without the sugar coating.

Also, it forces me to think about my relationship with my own prickly, scared, distant dad. Not in a "oh, I'd better quickly patch things up before it's too late" kind of way, but in a more reflective acceptance of how we deal with each other as grown-ups.

And finally, you got me pondering my role in the lives of my two young daughters. It's not like I don't think about the importance of my relationship with them all the time anyway, but your writing helps me internalize my responsibility to be a great dad, a real dad, the dad they need.

Sour Duck

I enjoyed reading the parts of your father you shared. Thank you.



My deepest condolences for your loss. Thank you for sharing this piece, it made me cry. A big hug.

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