***I just realized that a major portion of this post was somehow deleted when it was published. This is a corrected/updated post...the way it was intended to be from the beginning...
My Mom is dying. I never thought I would have to say that out loud, but here it is. We just laid my father-in-law to rest, and suddenly, a whole new dose of reality hits me square in the head. My Mom is going to die...It is coming and there is nothing I can do about it. She has battled some very serious health issues over the last few years, and each one has weakened her physical body a little more. This time, it seems that she just doesn't have enough left to fight it back again. I don't know how to comprehend this...she's always been my rock and foundation. Now, I am faced with this fact. In the next few days, she will be gone. As I have been forced to deal with the gravity of this inevitable truth, I was blind-sided by a startling development in my own health struggles.
Two days ago, I was unceremoniously informed that I have a pretty serious liver disease. No warning...no preparation...no sugar coating....I went to what I believed was a "routine" doctor's visit for a periodic exam and preventive testing. What happened next will stay with me until my last breath. The FNP was reviewing some medical history before scheduling my test, walked into the room, sat down, and without warning, blurted out that I had this condition.
I don't know a lot about it...but I'm learning fast. I do know that it can't be cured and, eventually, if I don't make some extreme and major changes in my life...it is going to kill me. Let me say that again...it is going to kill me. That thought was not even REMOTELY on my mind 48 hours ago...now, it's just about the only thing I can think about.
You see...this is the same disease that will ultimately end my Mom's life. It seems so strange to be experiencing this right now...as she is fighting for her own life. I'm not sure that there is ANYTHING that could have prepared me for this...NO, I'm CERTAIN that nothing could have prepared me for this.
There must be moments in everyone's life when something unexpected happens. Sometimes these spontaneous moments are good...sometimes not so good. In the last few years, my life has had an incredible number of these "moments". There is nothing in the world you can do to prepare yourself for these spontaneous events...so when they come, it's either going to be joyous boost to your life, or it's going to be a "kick in the head". A couple days ago...I got kicked in the head REALLY HARD!
When I was a much younger man, I felt like there wasn't much that I couldn't handle. I can still hear my granddad saying something to me about me thinking that I was "...10 feet tall and bulletproof!" Boy, was I fooling myself. In the last few years, I have come to realize that there are some things that come up, no matter what you do, that force you to rely on others...family, friends, doctors, etc...Of course, there always someone who says "I DON'T NEED ANYONE"!
Yeah...RIGHT!!!I know NO ONE who goes through life without the help of others. You can't do it...no matter how smart or prepared you think you are. To tell you the truth...right now, I'm scared to death. I'm trying not to overreact or lose perspective of the situation, but it's not easy. I need help! I freely admit it!
My wife, the love of my life, has spent the last 48 hours trying to keep me grounded and focused. Unfortunately for her, she's been forced to be on the ground floor of most of these "kick in the head" moments of my life. She's my rock and my support structure...I'm sorry honey, new moment of reality!
So, now what? Good question...unfortunately I don't have an answer for that particular question. I will keep working on my health care...I will educate myself as much as possible about these challenges I face...and I will keep my faith of God and love of my family at the forefront of all that I do. I'm not in control of this situation any more that I'm in control of the weather. This is God's territory!
PEACE & LOVE
Husband, father, sinner saved by the Grace of God, old teacher, wood-worker, bad golfer, USM Golden Eagle (forever) and MSU Bulldog lover (It's a daughter thing)