Friday, December 14, 2012
Alright, so I promised more honesty would be heading your way.
Well, buckle up, here it comes.
This week I finished off my last week of school. It was my final time taking classes on campus. The next two semesters will be spent in elementary schools. So I worked out in the gym for the last time. Walked through all those familiar hallways for the last time. Rode the light rail for the last time (well, for the purpose of going and coming to school - I'll be utilizing my free pass in the months to come). And man it made me happy. I feel like I am closing the door on an area of my life that wasn't filled with much joy.
Three years ago, after my first semester of college, dad was diagnosed with cancer. Dang. Three years! I can't believe it has been that long. But at the same time, it feels like a life time ago.
When I think back over my years at that college - the time spent on that campus - it all feels heavy. Dark and heavy. I don't really remember many fun times (although I know there were some). I actually don't remember much from it. All of it seems like a blur. A dark, heavy blur.
But, there are a few things that will be in my memory forever:
Finding out the tumor was cancerous. Getting told it spread to his lungs. Trying to decipher the doctor language of the fax that came in, then sitting there on the floor with the words "mass" and "cranium" repeating over and over in my head. Crying on the roof late at night. Sleeping in the ICU waiting room. Speeding to the hospital when his lung collapsed (followed by getting pulled over...). Holding him as he seizures and thinking, "God, are you gonna let him die in my arms?"
Goodness, so much has happened. SO much has changed. I mean, how did it go from having my dad - with everything completely normal - to this? How did we get to this point? From walking to barely able to stand. From having deep conversations about life's problems to barely able to answer a yes or no question. From being the big, strong, comforting dad to being weak, small, and needing comfort. From him being consumed with my life to me being consumed with his.
Alright, so I don't tell you all this to make you sad and to feel bad for me. Truly, that is not the reason I'm writing this. Mostly, I just need to say this - for my own benefit. I need to get it all out, think through it, process it, and just....get through it.
I was thinking about what has really encouraged me over the years and I realized this: it's your stories. There have been a few people who have shared their stories of similar hurt in their lives. Let me tell you, that made all the difference to me. All I wanted to know is that someone else was or is feeling the same way I was. I wanted to know I wasn't insane for feeling the ways I was feeling. So really, this is just me putting it all out there for people who need to hear this. I don't know what that really means or what that looks like. But, my hope is that it will help someone....anyone. I really believe God gave us each other to "share our burdens" with and I am finally realizing that is exactly what I need.
"Grieving is good. You've gotta get it out. It's normal. It's expected. And it's no wrong."
Has anyone ever said that?! I don't know. If they have, I've never heard it. But there you have it. I said it and I hope that helps.
Things are really rough right now with dad and we could all (my whole family) use lots 'o prayers. So, many thanks and love to you all, and to all a good night.