Saturday, March 12, 2016

In the Blink of an Eye....

It's amazing how fast things change. My dad was a strong, hard working man. He went to his brother's new home to help him sew grass. Later that evening he began to cough a lot, and coughed up blood. He thought it was most likely just irritation from the grass seed, but it concerned him enough to go to the ER. He found out he had a large mass in his lungs. Ultimately, it turned out to be fast moving cancer and he died 9 months later. Fast forward nearly 17 years. My step dad has always been strong and handy. He's the go to guy when something needs fixed. Anything. A lawn mower, car, sink, dishwasher, golf cart, whatever...he's one of those types. He came up here the Friday before Thanksgiving. He was fine. He joked and played with my son, worked on some project I had, and they went home. That night he got up sick. We all thought it was a stomach virus, or perhaps a side effect to a recent med change he had that day. No one else got sick, and he got worse. Much worse. A couple months went by, and several trips to the ER and various doctors, lots and lots of falls and stumbling and confusion. He was finally referred to a neurologist who did an EEG and an angiogram. Those tests confirmed he was having strokes, and his blood vessels in his brain-from top to bottom-are full of plaque. They say there's nothing they can do. The doctors all agreed that there would be no warning. He'd be here one second, and the next he'd be gone. And it would progress quickly. Again...no warning. Today he had a very, very bad day. He fell early on, then again this evening. A really bad fall. He was taken to the ER via ambulance, and the ambulance had to pull over to work on him and call in extra help just 10 minutes from the hospital. Scans reveal more strokes. Please, tell those you love what they mean to you, and realize we are never promised a tomorrow.

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