Friday, December 31, 2010

Christmas Blessings

Christmas has come and gone, a new year waits just over the next sundown and I'm going over the last days, weeks and months in my foggy depths.  All I can see was good; it was very, very good. 

My parents are here visiting for two weeks, more than one of which has become memories.  Great memories, the kind that can live on when they fly back to New York.

We only planned a couple of things (other than the big birthday celebration last weekend) intentionally keeping it low key for everyone.  When they arrived at the airport it was amazing to see them.  I was incredibly grateful to grab them and hug them, not before my kids ran to be scooped up by the same arms that have held me at every age, however.  As soon as we arrived at home this song popped into my head and hasn't left.

It was a mildly warm July day, I stood outside, phone sandwiched between my ear and shoulder pacing around our patio table.  I watched my kids playing, shrieking and running as I listened to his voice, the words seemed far away.  They were almost unbelievable, I thought the tests would come back normal, but they didn't.  Indeed, my dad had prostate cancer.

I don't think I fully came to grips with it for awhile, maybe not until I saw him in flesh again last week.  He had cancer.   The rest of the summer was filled with phone calls updating on test results, scans and procedures.  Jokes about being injected with radioactive something or other the day of the bone scan and how I should look on the horizon to see if I could see him glowing from 2000 miles away.

The Dr's were positive and more importantly my Dad was positive too.  Certain that they could remove it and he would be cured.  My mom, I could tell even from afar, was an amazing assistant to him, supporting him. Even though she needed to have her own biopsy and lump removal in the middle of all of his tests, which, praise God, was cancer free. 

One day in early fall, my dad had his cancer removed.  My brother was there to be with my Mom and my kids kept me distracted.  I prayed.  It was what I could do; I was unable to get back there to hold his hand one more time or sing of God's faithfulness.  I prayed and sang with my children.  For the surgeons to work carefully and correctly, that God would let me have my dad for a bit longer.  That we still had more words to say to one another, that my kids needed more memories.  I prayed for comfort for all of us, whatever His will would be.

The process of healing began and the praises rang out towards the heavens and many weeks later one last phone call about one last test, the cancer is completely gone!  Hallelujah!  So I can sit now, between my dad and husband, crocheting on the couch and listen to them playfully taking jabs at one another and hear his footsteps on my floor.  I found myself this Christmas, kneeling humbly at the foot of the manger whispering to the only innocent babe, thank you, thank you for one more Christmas.
He's always been faithful to me. 


Beth said...

I remember when my Dad came over and told us he had prostate cancer. I felt like the floor was falling and I couldn't breathe. He was my Superman. How could this be happening? I remember after he left, I collapsed on the floor and sobbed for what seemed days. Then a peace blanketed me and I knew the Holy Spirit was descending upon me with comfort. My Dad would be ok. And he was.

My Dad is nearly 6 years cancer free. I rejoice with you too my friend. As each year passes and your Dad is cancer free, I will do the happy dance with you! :)

Geo. said...

Butterfly Mama,
As an old gardener who looks forward to lab reports with typical trepidation, I empathize with your dad, you and family. Thanks for pic showing where that perfect smile comes from. I'm moved by writing that both recalls my own past and replenishes my hopes for others. Nicely done, and happy new year to you all!

Butterfly Mama said...

Beth, that is SO awesome!!!!

Yes, happy new year to you too!

Stephanie said...

Happy New Year! What a wonderful time for you and your family!

Aunt Mimi said...

Thanks Heidi! That was good for a few tears. What a great family photo. Thanks for sharing your story. God is good! Happy New Year.

Love, Aunt Mimi

Wendy said...

Thanks for sharing this, Heidi! God is so good!