Vandalia Leader

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Scary times lead to counting blessings

Posted on Wednesday, March 29, 2017 at 12:49 pm

I’ve never been one of those people who have said they wish the current year would just end already.
You know you’ve heard those people before…You may have already talked to someone in March who have had some tragedy hit their family or an illness has lingered and they might have expressed their hopes for a new year to start already.
Well, I’m not there, but for the first time ever, the thought crossed my mind this week when I received a concerning call last Tuesday.
It’s been a rough start for our family in 2017…
In the last four weeks, my step-mom passed and then came last Tuesday.
My step-sister called me that morning as I was going to press to let me know my father has been rushed to the hospital by ambulance.
Apparently, he had been sitting at the kitchen table when she went to bed. When she woke up early in the morning, he was still sitting there.
For about seven hours, my father sat at the table, and to this day, doesn’t remember those seven hours at all.
So I booked a flight to Maryland for Wednesday and arrived at his hospital room, where I would stay through early Sunday morning.
For the first time I could remember, my aging father, who will be 75 in November, needed assistance to do everything.
While still fighting bronchial sickness, he needed the help of oxygen, help to get up, and had a need for a walker.
He eventually was diagnosed with blood clots in his lungs. His doctor thinks they may have developed from the countless hours he sat by my step-mom’s bedside at the nursing home and hospital.
While the thoughts crossed my mind about this crazy year when connecting flights from St. Louis to Detroit to Maryland, I’ve also had a lot of time to count my blessings when sitting in the hospital room with my dad.
I’m thankful my dad is still here. And though 900+ miles separate us, I’ve been with my dad now three times in just one month.
We’ve spent countless hours talking, playing rummy, and just enjoying each other’s company.
As an only child who lives so far away, I am so thankful God paved a way for me to fly out to be by his side at a time in life where he needed it the most.
While I wish circumstances could have been a little different, I am forever grateful to have this time with him.
Many of our readers have prayed for my dad this past week and have reached out to my family here in this area and through Social Media.
Please know those prayers and thoughts were felt.
My dad is not one to care too much about Facebook.
But he enjoyed seeing the many prayers and thoughts expressed on my posts about him and his health. He was a little taken back by the fact that so many people cared to take even a few seconds to pray for him during this scary time.
My dad is still not out of  the woods yet, though he is set to go home before this paper publishes.
Our prayer is for these blood clots to be dissolved through his treatments and that all goes well with the blood thinner he’s taking. Prayers are also needed for his strength as he tries to get back to walking like he once did.
Yes, 2017 has not started the way our family could ever imagine it would have. But through the many challenges, there have been many blessings through God’s provisions along with caring concerns and prayers shared by so many people our family is connected with.