Saturday, November 21, 2015

My Dad is a Fighter!

Life can change in an instant. 
Thursday I was talking to my dad and he was joking about me being the best neighborhood watch because I noticed a window on one of their vehicles that looked like it was down so I called to make sure that somebody hadn't broken it.  He thanked me for looking out for him.  I asked him what he had going on for the day.  Who would have ever thought that two days later he would have a stroke. I am grateful that my mom was home this morning and heard him fall and called 911.  I am grateful that Memorial Hospital gave him the medication to slow the stroke.  I am grateful they called Mayo Clinic and got him transferred.  I am grateful for my family. By the time we all got there, they already had a cat scan done and had him prepped for surgery. Before beginning the surgery and talking with my mom the doctor said that he had been around long enough to know that he wasn't the one in charge and would pray before surgery. It was a long five hours, waiting for a word from the doctor about how he was doing.  The blockage was worse than they had anticipated.  He has a long road ahead of him, but I've seen my dad fight back from the grips of mental illness, and being one who struggles, and knowing how hard that is to battle, yet my dad has....I know he can get through this.  I love my dad and its hard to see him like he is right now, but I am grateful that he is still with us.  Sometimes life feels so fleeting.  When tough stuff like this happens, there is always something good to come from it.  The outpouring of support for me and my family was eye opening.  Gave me hope that there are still people in the world who care.  Catching glimpses of my son comforting his grandma was also sweet to see.  I want my boys to know the importance of being there for others. I am grateful for the people who showed up today.  There was really nothing anybody could do aside from pray....and be there.  This world we live in seems to think that we have to "do" for people when they are going through difficulties and challenges but sometimes I think you just need to 'be' for those who are there.  I saw that today, and felt the love of those who were there - some in person, some via text messages, some via facebook messages, some via phone calls.  Those who have reached out to me to show their love and support really mean a lot to me.  The doctor did seem a little surprised when he came into the waiting room after the surgery and saw so many people there for my dad. I will say we did take up the majority of the space in the waiting room.  Before we left, we were able to go see my dad, and honestly that is when it hit me the hardest.  In my minds eye I wanted to think he would go through surgery and be up and talking tonight.  I know that was unrealistic, seeing him just sorta opened the flood gates for me.  He did open his eye and squeeze my hand when I told him I would be sure to pick up his lotto ticket that he usually gets every Saturday. I've been pretty upset since seeing him, I know he is a fighter, I know he will push through because that is what he does. I've been listening to messages he had left me, and for some odd reason - I save some peoples messages...  But it's hard, and I'm sad and I'm scared and I'm worried.  As we were leaving my sister came out as I was talking to my brother and gave me a hug and the next thing I knew we were embraced in a 'sibling hug' among the four of us as we stood outside the doors of the ICU Waiting Room, and you know that is exactly what dad would have wanted.  He always told us, and showed us with his actions, that no matter what you have to be there for your family. As my mom said, "He is sleeping comfortably, we are praying faithfully and we are believing wholeheartedly that he will heal."   I love my dad so much, and my heart feels so heavy tonight.

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