I'm like an egg ready to crack. I didn't realize that until today. During GIFT, just the slightest innuendo about my dad's health, sprung tears to my eyes and I got choked up. I've been able to push it aside while I work, and while we are home together as a family, but our topic of discussion today brought him to the forefront for me. And it was hard to keep a brave face.
B and I visited my dad yesterday. He came home from the hospital again on Monday, so we checked in on him. He looked good. I was relieved. He looked far better than he did at Christmas, and it made his last hospital stay a little less scary for me. And then, he wrote 5 words (remember, he has no voice box, he can't talk, writing is our communication) that changed things for me. Not that my dad is Nostradamus, and I am certain he isn't moonlighting as God these days, but just his resolution to these 5 words was heart wrenching. It rendered me speechless, and I knew that if I even tried to muster any words, I would turn into a puddle. So I sat. And looked into my dad's face. I watched him watch me, and I suddenly saw what I hadn't wanted to see before. A man who has no control over what is happening to him. A man who has resolved himself to trust in the Lord, and who has given his life to Him. A man who has lost significant weight. Someone who has in just a matter of a year gone from strong, active, nimble and able, to...well.... not. He isn't the same. I didn't want to see that before. I had no choice yesterday.
Jodie, what were those 5 words? Yea, it pains me to write them, but here they are.
There will be an end
Certainly we don't know when that end will be. Could my dad have 30 more years in front of him? Not likely. Could he have 30 more months? That would be awesome. Will he have 30 more days? Lord help me, I hope so.
And then. We went to see him again today. And folks, he looked worse. 24 hours later, people. That's it. I mean, if Brian looked as though he were in pain every other day, I would be concerned. My dad looks weak and frail everyday, so when he is in visible pain every other time I see him.... The security I felt in seeing him yesterday GONE. Instantly. I couldn't say that to him, I had to put that brave face back on but, it seems like it is one step forward, 2 steps back.
I am praying that I am not watching my dad die. I am praying that after these appointments some miracle doctor is going to walk in the door and inject a miracle drug into my miracle father and he will live on. Healthy. We've seen miracles before right? I would settle for a realistic chance at healthy survival with chemo treatments. Yep, that is selfishly in my prayers.
On my way home from the gym last night I prayed in a way that I hadn't before. I prayed that God would help my dad use whatever information he is given to make a decision that is prayerful and right---that I've done. But what I hadn't done before, is ask for acceptance of if it. I saw in my dad's eyes his pain. Not just physical pain. The pain that this is causing his daughters, that hurts him I know. And I realize that this will not be an easy decision, no matter what direction he goes in. Chemo? No chemo? Not easy. The last thing he needs is for me or my sisters to impose our opinions and selfish desires on him. So I am praying for the ability to not inflict anymore pain on him when we meet with the oncologists. I pray to not be selfish in my interactions with him, and I pray that he knows that I support whatever decision he makes, and that if he maintains his decision that chemo isn't an option...then I pray to understand that. We still have 2 weeks before we'll have all our questions answered. 2 more weeks. Jeez.
And then of course, dear Lisa brought in a video to our discussion tonight that just brings me back to God. She is good like that. I am grateful for my days at Willow Creek Junior High. The days that brought me Lisa as a friend. I am grateful for t-ping Justin Jacobsen's house during her bday party all those years ago. I cherish this women, and all she stands for. She is amazing. If you feel so inclined to watch the video...please do!
I'll work on photos again tomorrow. We've got Chi-town, Christmas, Cookies, concerts, productions, parties...wow. I'm working on it!