Sometimes I wonder how much I should put here on the blog. If I should go into the messy emotional things I go through, or just only post the blogs when all is well. I'm sure for marketing, it's bad to go into the messy emotional things, but I've always believed in keeping it real. Mom and I were having this debate recently, more so about her blog, and how people have encouraged her to write about the REAL mess our family is going through as we progressively see my dad get worse, from hospital and insurance drama, to the disappointment in long time friends or family who have yet to show concern, to everything in between. Mom decided to keep her blog positive, because she wants to show that she's having faith in spite of everything. She wants to be an encouragement to others who read her blog. She wants to prove that God is strong in our weakness.
But today was the kind of day where we were both a crying mess. We decided last minute to go and see a movie to distract us, but afterward we just sat in the parking lot crying about all our fears and anger and confusion and doubt and emptiness we feel as we slowly feel my dad slipping away more and more. His tumor continues to increase and each day he's in more and more pain as his body breaks down.
These tears though come after a beautiful day we shared together the day before as all three of us got in the car to travel to Tallahassee to attend the Florida State football game, the first for my dad this season. My dad barely had enough strength to go, but he has always been the biggest Seminole fan, and it was always one of his greatest joys in life, sitting on the 50 yard line, row 2 at each home game for the past decade. In college, I would drive all the way from University of Florida just to go to the Florida State games with him (I know, I know, I'm a Gator traitor!). I've never been a big football fan, but I would make the 2.5 hour drive just to hang out with my dad and pretend to be the son he never had for a few hours as we ragged the other team and shouted our "Ooo ooo o o oooohs" while doing the tomahawk chop.
But yesterday, it was just different. We drove 3 hours to the game, but only stayed until half time because he simply didn't have the energy to stay longer. I cherished every moment enjoying the experience with him again, but at the same time, it saddened my heart because I knew deep down it would be his last game. Mom confirmed it today when she said that he said last night that he knew it was too.
So today was kind of the aftermath of that sadness. That gut wrenching sinking feeling where a huge emptiness consumes my heart knowing I'm really losing one of the two people who mean the most to me in this world. The kind of feeling where the slightest thought of my dad fills my eyes with tears. The kind where, yes, I say I'm a Christian, but I don't have the strength to even pray or seek God's presence right now, because honestly a huge part of my heart is furious at Him for taking away my dad like this as I watch the strongest man I ever knew became so weak and fraile. I know he's not gone yet, but the whole thing has been kind of like ripping off a band-aid. It hurts less if you just rip it off, but if you rip it slowly, pulling one hair at a time, it hurts like &*!$! But then again, I had a friend who recently lost her dad to a heart attack, so I know neither way is less painful.
I felt numb when I first heard the news of his cancer, but now I simply feel broken. I continue to try to block the pain and move on with life and distract myself with work, but it's all more like a fake superglue trying to hold my life together when instead I feel like crawling under the covers and crying my eyes out like a little girl who wants to scream IT'S NOT FAIR!
I'm not writing all this for sympathy, and I don't mean to keep whining, but I'm just being real with all of you through the ups and downs of coping with this reality that has shaken up my world. I thank you for all your continued prayers standing in the gap where my faith is lacking right now. Oh, how so quickly we can go from being on the mountain to back in the valley... but I know that's what faith is all about as Ginny Owens sings in one of my all time favorite songs "If You Want Me To."