But, I don't want to lose my father. Not yet. I'm not ready to be "orphaned", and despite the fact that I'm grown and have adult kids of my own, I don't yet feel old. You're never ready to let your parents go. Sometimes I still want to call my dad and ask for his advice, let him reassure me that everything is going to be okay, and remember what it was like to be a child when there was no memory of pain, grief, or aging, and someone else carried all the responsibilities.
shows us, our hero clearly seemed to think that moving into the Tiny Train House was supposed to magically kill Jim or some such nonsense. The odd thing is that she's not the only person who associated change with Jim Richards' death. While John and the others had made their peace with his passing, the only other person to worry about his no longer being there was, of course, April. As her letter from October 2006 relates:
I can't stop thinking about him. They have him sedated so he sleeps all the time. What if he wakes up but can't talk, or he's not really there anymore? Can he hear us talking to him? When he looks at us, he sees us, but what does he know? What if he's in pain and can't tell us? Is he having nightmares? What if he wakes up alone in the middle of the night? I know they are doing everything they can for him, but I'm scared. We don't know what he'll be able to do, or how well he'll be able to think, and nobody can tell us yet. The brain is so complicated. They can guess. They know where the stroke "hit" but they can't say exactly what has been destroyed.
April was terrified that the grandfather she knew would either be a vegetable or, worse, perfectly lucid but trapped in a malfunctioning shell of a body. Given that John and Elly think that she's kinda stupid, she didn't get talked to as such but more talked DOWN to about the whole thing.
Plop the Housening on top of that and you've pretty much got why she was sort of freaked out. Not only was she just supposed to drift where ever adults wanted her to, she couldn't even get her Grandpa to tell her it would be all right. This, as I said before, is where his not being able to speak had the worst side effect. If he could speak, he could have told his granddaughter something her idiot parents never saw fit to explain. Were she to be told that a house is just a box that a home is put in, she'd have been a lot happier.