Thursday, December 21, 2017

How do you make it through two traumas in a week?

December started with a fun Christmas celebration with our Bible study group.

Life quickly changed.

Very early on December 3rd, Ed had to go to the emergency room. He had surgery to remove his gallbladder the next morning. We knew that some people had gallbladder surgery as an out patient. So, we were thinking he would go home by afternoon.

Didn't happen. The doctor explained that it was "messy," not a typical removal. He had scar tissue, infection, inflammation, and gallstones. He stayed in the hospital until the 6th.

On the morning of December 9th, my sister called me to say that our dad passed away. He was 87, lived alone, near my sister in Tulsa, but had many health issues.

Ed's recovery has been slow. He went home with a drain tube that didn't come out until the 19th. He was not able to attend the service for my dad.

We talk about what do we want others to say about us when we die - what do I want as defining elements of my life, do I live my life so that others would recognize those things in me?

I had to write the obituary for our pastor to share at the graveside service for my dad. Then my sister and I both shared some personal things. What do I say about my dad? 

My dad had many strong, positive qualities. He also had some challenging attributes.

As I wrestled with how to summarize the father that I knew, I also thought about my own life. What will my children say about me when I am gone? Will my grandchildren have good times that they remember? Will I have friends and family members who will weep when I am gone?

All are questions that deserve some time to ponder for each of us.

The other question is "How do you make it through so much in such a short amount of time - especially at a busy time of the year?"

I made it through because I have HOPE. Hope has a name, His name is Jesus Christ. His Presence sustains me and gives me strength. I made it through because of a multitude of friends and family who have prayed for me and for Ed and for my family.

It hasn't been the Christmas that I expected, but I will never forget it. There have been many times of sadness but many opportunities for joy and comfort as well.

I have sincere gratitude and love for those prayers and comfort.

I pray that your time during this season with your family and friends will be one of rejoicing.

With love, Donna Edwards