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Friday, May 30th, 2008

Yes, I will praise my Lord even though I miss my dad..even though I wanted my dad to come home...even though my heart is still breaking...My Lord knows best and my dad is no longer in pain and is sitting at the feet of his Savior whom he loved so much.

My family and I went to see my dad yesterday. On Friday evening he was transferred to a nursing home in NJ. He's in here for a short term for rehab. My mom met us by the door and said, "He's not doing good." We all proceeded to the room and he was just laying there moaning in pain. He saw my husband and grabbed onto his hand and just started to cry. My husband has been away for the past 2 weeks on Army business. My dad obviously does not remember the last time Phil came to see him in the hospital. The last time Phil saw him my dad was still on the ventitlator.

After we all said hello to him, he kept complaining of his pain. Then he said, "I'm dying." I said, "No, you're not." Then he wanted to get out of bed and we had to wait for awhile for the aides to come and assist him into his wheelchair. My Olivia pushed him into the front sitting room where there is a big window. He started to cry again while in there. I just hugged him and told him that everything was going to be okay. I then noticed that there was a big porch out front and asked him if he wanted to go out there. It was raining out but the porch would cover us.

We got out onto the porch and I sat next to him on one of the benches. We started talking about little things, like the fact that he hasn't been outside in 3 weeks. He actually started to "perk up." We spent the next 2 hours just going back and forth from the sitting room to the porch. At one point, he asked if he was staying here forever. I know my mother explained to him that this was just for rehab, but, my dad still gets confused at times. We explained again to him that he can come home as soon as he gets strong and can walk with a walker.

I read a scripture this morning on another blog that I like to read. It seemed to jump out of the page at me! (I've replaced the words "my" and "me" and added my father in parenthesis to make a point)

Psalm 116:1-6 (The Message)

I love God because he listened to me, listened as I begged for mercy.
He listened so intently as I laid out my case before him.
Death stared (my father) in the face, hell was hard on (my father's) heels.
Up against it, I didn’t know which way to turn;
then I called out to God for help:
”Please, God!” I cried out. ”Save (my father's) life!”
God is gracious—it is he who makes things right,
our most compassionate God. God takes the side of the helpless;
when (my father) was at the end of (his) rope, he saved(my father).

All I can say to this is AMEN!


A Miracle of God...

I know it's been a while since I've posted. My life has been so occupied with trying to keep up here at home, the kids, my husband being gone and, of course, my dad being in the hospital. He's still in ICU, almost three weeks now, although they are trying to move him up to an observation room sometime today.

I spent the day with him yesterday since my mom had to go back to NJ for a doctor's appointment she made months ago and to see her dentist. He looked so good. The nurses had just given him a bath and his hair was even washed. He was sitting up in bed trying to eat breakfast. He's only been receiving food for a day or two. And, it can only be soft, pureed food. He still cannot take any liquids. For the past few days he's been begging for water, "A nice glass of cold water with ice from the refrigerator, please." Unfortunately for my dad, he still chokes on water. They gave him some medication yesterday with a tiny amount of water and a few minutes later he started gagging and threw up. So, no water yet.

There's still confusion at times. He still can't remember the year or the current president. Nor, could he remember who he voted for in the last election, but knows it was a republican. But, when I questioned him about the times when I was little and we use to go and pick fruit in Jamaica, Queens, he knew right away whose house it was, "Apple's" was his response. And, yes, there was this wonderful couple in our church who had a beautiful home and they had a huge garden with plenty of fruit bushes. They would invite us over each year to pick whatever we wanted. I remember clearly sitting for the whole time with their blueberry bushes, eating more than I picked! And, so did my dad. He even remembered making my sister and I eat the brussel sprouts Sis. Apple fixed for dinner. Oh, how we hated them!

I commented to my dad that it's so wonderful that none of his limbs were broken, he said so clearly, "It's a miracle of God." That's what we've been saying from day one. A miracle. Where was God when my dad was falling down those stairs?? God was right with him protecting him from further harm. I truly believe with all my heart that if my Lord was not watching over my dad, he would have died. My dad has served the Lord all of his life. And, more importantly, the Lord has been faithful to him. We may not always see the Lord at first as we go through terrible times, but, when we begin to look back over the tragedies we realize that He has always been with us.

At the end of the day the blessings of this life are our family, friends and people who love us. Through this tragedy my family has realized how much we are loved. And, more importantly, how much my father is loved by so many people. At the end of the day, we don't know which day will be our last, but it's the impact we make for God that's important. What we do now will make a difference in eternity. My father's life is an example of that by the many cards and e-mails he's received from so many people telling him that they serve the Lord now because of his dedication to God.

May we all realize that this life we live now is not our final destiny. There is so much more waiting for us. But, the decision is ours to make. If my father were to have died, I have a blessed assurance that I will one day see him again. Not as he is here, but in a glorified, un-hurting body, worshiping our Savior.


This is the day...I will rejoice??

A few days ago some friends and I were discussing this song that we all know: This is the day, this is the day that the Lord has made, that the Lord has made. I will rejoice, I will rejoice and be glad in it. We got around to saying how "old fashioned" that song was. Well, let me tell you I have not been able to get that song out of my mind!

I looked up the verse in the Bible and it's in Psalms 118 and King David is telling us to Rejoice and be glad! The Lord has blessed us with another day!

You might be saying, how can I rejoice when my dad is still in such critical condition lying in ICU with a ventilator helping him breathe? I do find it hard. And, I'm really not running around rejoicing too much either! And, I do understand the severity of everything my dad is enduring. But, I do feel the Lord telling me to find something to be thankful for. Find something to rejoice in. Even though we're going through difficult times right now there are still things to rejoice in.

So, let's start, okay?? I will rejoice and be glad that my dad is not more seriously injured. I will rejoice that he's in a hospital that is taking such great care of him. I will rejoice that the nurses are so nice. I will rejoice that my dad squeezed my hand today when I told him I loved him. I will rejoice...I will rejoice with the knowledge that my God is able to do all things and that I serve an awesome and mighty God.

Enjoy the song!

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