My Dad Passed Away -- --way too soon.
Friday afternoons, evening & nights (ditto for Saturdays) are difficult. No. Not just difficult they are gut-wretching. For 6 weeks now. I look at the clock on Friday at 1:30p. ThatÂs when my sister called and said the paramedics just left the house, where am I? I need to leave my store NOW and come home "if you want to talk to Dad".
THAT WAS THE CALL. That was the call that sent my little sister & her DH running thru the Jacksonville airport to get on an emergency flight. The call to get Mom home from work, to get my DH & nephew to walk off their jobs(they work together) and out their doors together to race home. And the call to my brother, who was doing an open-heart surgery, to use every psychological strength and professional stamina he had in him to finish his business, run out of the OR and race the 70 mil. Trip home to try to save Dad. It was the call that choked our oldest brother in his place of business (and, ironically, DadÂs place of retirement the week before) and sent him flying down the highway.
No!!! It just couldnÂt be true. Dad was diagnosed with Pulmonary Fibrosis 4 months ago. He was 69. Yes, we knew he was on oxygen, but heÂs moving aroundÂwe ate KFC at home together the night before! How could he have collapsed?
Hospice came to the house. For 44 hours, all 16 of us loved on Dad. We were able to communicate (he was WRITING lifeÂs instructions to us). We loved on him, kissed him, washed him with cool cloths, massaged his shoulders, prayed on/with/to him. In the later hours, we read scripture (Dad, the patriarch, had a very close relationship with God.). We sang his favorite hymns. My DH told Dad to "go ahead and go, Ken. It's the only way you're going to get them to quit the singing" We know we made him laugh (we could see that little smile under all the oxygen paraphernalia). That was exactly 2 hours before he breathing stopped forever.
AT 5:30am Sunday morning, we said our last goodbyes. It was such a sweet, sweet 20 minutes. We said the LordÂs Prayer:Â.for Thine is the Kingdom, the Power, the Glory Forever. Amen." He drew his last breath and Dad SOARED out of that room. We all saw it, we felt it. Dad had found favour with God in his life and God blessed Dad and our family. We were in GodÂs presence when he took DadÂs hand and led him home.
It was the most awesome, horrible, blessed, sweet, horrifying thing thatÂs ever happened to any of us. Ever. I canÂt believe heÂs gone. I just can hardly believe it. He was only 69. His retirement dinner was one week prior. ShouldnÂt he have had 2-3 years??? Why didnÂt he share how sick he was with us (especially his Dr. & and 2 nurses children!) Oh, they knew he was sick, but not the 2 years before he was forced to show his hand and go to a doctor.
I canÂt get over those 44 hours. I canÂt believe heÂs gone. It was too fast and we got cheated out of 15 years or so, of his life. I can hardly get out of bed in the mornings. ItÂs been six weeks and I relive that Fri/Sat over & over & over. I watch the clock those 44 hours EVERY week and relive every moment (so does my Mom. My sisters & brothers don't do that nearly so much). IÂm sorry this is so long. The good thing is that me & my 4 siblings (and THEIR kids) have grown very, very close because of this amazing experience. I'll miss Dad forever & ever. I'm tired of crying. I have so many questions. And regrets. And heartaches about him, as I was the middle child Thank you for letting me share. Kelley