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Dear Dad,

I can’t believe three years have passed. Three years since I stood at your bedside, not believing what I was seeing. Melanoma had blown up your brilliant mind in an instant and left behind a broken shell. One day you were here. The next day you were gone.

Dad

As I helped plan your memorial I rescheduled an appointment with my internist to take a look at some swollen lymph nodes in my leg. It wouldn’t have changed anything.

You lived your entire life in the church of science rather than the church of God. I pray that as your spirit left us, He, knowing your helpful hand offered to so many, extended His own. I hope you took it.

Three years of grief, pain, battle, misery, disbelief, broken heartedness, education, growth, love, miracles, blessings, surprises, faith, and living. Mom carries on for her kids and grandkids, like moms are supposed to do. She is so strong when we need her. I don’t know how she does it.

Tony has grown and thrived even without your tall shadow standing nearby. The willing helpfulness he exudes is the biggest tribute to you of all of us.

The four grandchildren are healthy and have all shot up like weeds. After one week of eighth grade “health and family education” with pictures, we suddenly have a future priest on our hands. The girls are growing up way too fast and full of so much potential. So far only our #2 is the one having regular checkups with the dermatologist however she was recently given a one year pass. She has our same skin Dad, the same as you, Tony, and I.

I wish the little man had more memories of you. He is still Mr. Adventurous like Alan and he’s turning out to be pretty smart too.

We are thankful for the knowledge that although we travel a rough road, we are in God’s hands.

I’m not clear on the exact day I am supposed to celebrate my ”cancer-versary”, I was diagnosed stage 3C about three weeks after you died, it’s all so tied together like our brown eyes and dimpled chins. I am grateful you never knew. It is a heavy burden to think you’ve passed something deadly on to your children.

We are now one day into year four. Year Four.

I am doing great Dad. And I can barely believe it.

Today the radiation oncologist had all good news – the SRS worked on my tiny little brain tumors! I am allowed back behind the wheel “officially” (ok, I admit, I have cheated a little these last couple of weeks) and he doesn’t need to see me for four months.

Last week I was given a four-week pass from oncology because the Zelboraf/Ipi is working and my liver enzymes are all normal for the first time in a long time. Four weeks!! Next week I make the rounds for check ups in cardiology and dermatology. My stomach is still a little dodgy but there doesn’t seem to be an ulcer or anything else to be overly concerned about. I started acupuncture and I like it.

I am thankful for every day and I am hopeful. We are blessed.

You are still dearly missed.

Rest in Peace,

Amy

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