So FAST!

I can hardly believe that it’s Monday already.  This has been a fantastic trip!. I had not realized just how MUCH I have missed my in-laws, and the Low Country.  The weather has been very accommodating, The company has been excellent.  The walks on the beach have been the BEST. Meals are SO good… I think I have gained weight again!..

I’m  taking a “blog break” while Joey went to pick up her mom.  Al is at the VA for a doctor appointment.

Evan and Scott are playing video games. John is taking a nap –  as are Johnny and Mariette

Nice and peaceful.

I will start packing up tonight.  We have a 1000 flight out of Charleston, which means we need to leave here around 0630.  We are all going out for supper tonight (ALL of us) so that we don’t have to cook and clean kitchen.

Se ya back in Texas!

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and AWAY we GO!

In about 11 hours, I will be leaving, with my wife and youngest son, for a week long vacation at Pawley’s Island, SC.  We are going to visit my father-in-law, and mother-in-law, and will be visited there by a brother-in-law and my nephew and his wife.  This is my first trip since surgery (not including the trip back home from Indy, post op).  I am SO EXCITED!.., but a little nervous, as well.

1st, is the issue of germy air on the plane.  I will wear a triple filtration mask while on board.

2nd, I am concerned about anything going wrong medically while I am there, (though my doctors told me today that I am OK to travel, and they are only a cell phone call away…24/7).

3rd, I don’t want to cause of any problems for my family, so I have to be STRONG.

Other than that… I can hardly wait to get there.  It’s been almost 3 years since I have seen Joey’s family, and I miss them a lot.

So with God’s will and protection, we will be at Al’s house by 4pm Tuesday afternoon, and enjoy beach living in “shabby elegance” – unique to Pawley’s Island and the Carolina Low Country – with plenty of time to read, watch movies, walk on the beach, and catch up on visiting.

Yes, Life is STILL worth living!

Later….

1 year ago…

… I was just waking up about this time. I remember my sister standing over my bed an looking down at me with a smile.  I KNOW what an angel smile looks like. Then shortly after, my brother and my wife and son arrived.  I was in and out of consciousness, on the ventilator, J-line placed in my neck, NG tube in my nose, restrained with wooly soft handcuffs, pain medicine running continuously, and a completely open belly (really, they didn’t close me up till a few days after surgery). I was not good company, I’m sure. But yet, there you all were… sitting with me constantly, making sure I was hydrated, rubbing my feet with lotion, swabbing my forehead and face with a cool damp cloth.

It’s been a long hard road from there to now.  But I HAVE SURVIVED the first year!  I AM alive! I, again. thank the following for support and help:

First of all, I thank God for taking care of me and my family. I thank him for guiding the hands and minds of my medical teams. I pray that he continues to unfold his plan for me, because I know I’m not in charge of anything here.

Secondly, I thank my wife and kids, and my siblings and their families (and especially my mother) for all of the prayers and cards and visits and for being my family.  I also thank my church family who, in the form of small groups, have helped us through some very trying emotional and financial times. They have showered us all with love and help and meals.  Thank you and bless you.

Thirdly, I thank all of my friends for their continued support. And I give a big shout out to Matt and Hoanh, and Al and Nancy, for taking me in while I waited for my liver.  I could not have made it through without your selflessness and your love, and I will never forget your kindness. You are family. Thank you all.

What’s next? Well, no more surgeries, I hope.  I just want to live my days doing whatever God leads me to do.  I want to continue to marvel at nature. I want to continue to love my wife, my family, my friends and my pets.  I want to work again, as soon as I am cleared medically.  I want to experience MORE.

Always remember: “Life’s worth living.” (quote from M.S. “Coon” Derden. Thanks Malky)