This is my Dad at about two years old. I love the little beret. He loved to get his picture taken, but I'm not so sure he was thrilled in this picture!
Thank you for the comments that have been left recently. They mean so much to me. Things have been quite hectic around here, as expected. Daddy had a stroke on January 9th and was in ICU for three days. The fourth day we were told he would never return to the quality of life he had prior to the accident. The head of neurology said he would have to be on a ventilator and feeding tube for the rest of his life. We all knew that Daddy was not happy being paralyzed on the left side from an accident he had ten years ago. How would he feel if he ever came out of his coma and was relying on life support and could never go home again? So many decisions to be made. We had talked about all of this the third night he was in the hospital. He had not been conscious once. Friday we made the decision. My sister had been able to come up so all three of us, with input from Daddy's sister and my husband, made the decision together. So difficult for someones life to be put into your hands. Friday we were ready for the worst. I really didn't want him to leave us then because it was the 13th - stupid superstitions, I guess. R didn't want him to leave us on Valentine's Day. He must have sensed that. We were told repeatedly to let Daddy go. How difficult it is to let the rock in your life go. He was just helping me get through RLs Dad's death. He was just praying for me and giving me scriptures to comfort me through the whole ordeal. He was just talking to RL on the phone and telling him that he would be there for him. He would help him. They would do things together so he would still have a father figure. He couldn't leave us! And yet somehow I had to tell him it was okay. I think my sister was probably the strongest of the three of us and she was able to let him go before Mom and I. Finally, with every ragged breath he took, I let him go. Our family, Mom excluded, went to her house to sleep that night. We woke up to the ringing phone at 5:30 a.m. It was time and we had to get there as soon as possible. We did. We held hands, we touched him, we kissed him, we released him, we prayed, we hummed and then sang. The sun came up and it was beautiful. I don't think I have seen a sun rise that beautiful in years. Then he was gone. It was 7:35 on Sunday morning. How could I mourn when he was whole again? When he was walking without his cane. When he was flying without a pilot's license or any restrictions? RL and I left the room to tell the kids. When we got back to the room, Daddy's face had changed. He had a little smirk on his face. If you know anything about Daddy, you know a smirk means he is up to something and I know in my heart what he was up to. He was back with his Mom and Dad, his brothers and his sisters. His youngest sister is still with us and I am so grateful for that. She has the peace that Daddy had and was able to help through the hard parts of that week.
Now the hospital stay is behind us and it's time to get busy. Mom's best friend has been with her since the Saturday before Daddy died. She's helped her get organized and find all the legal papers. What a blessing she has been. We will be leaving for Florida next week for a memorial service. Daddy's friends are there and we know they all want to say good-bye.
I hope one day knitting will once again be my biggest concern. I could hardly pick up the needles while I was at the hospital. Right now a dish cloth is on the needles and seems to be the deepest project I can concentrate on.
Please pray for my Mom most of all. She is starting a new life that she's not accustomed to. She's been a care giver for the past 15 years - first with her parents and then with Daddy. She needs to rest and find out what she wants to do for the first time in years. Please pray for my sister and me that we will find the right words to say to Mom when she needs comforting. And please pray for my family. Losing two grandfathers/fathers in less than a month is a little tough on anybody, but especially the kids. Thank you.