Tuesday, February 2, 2010

I Didn't See It Coming....

Yesterday I was in an interesting position. Through a series of events, I found myself in the company of a family member (definitely not my Daddy) who felt comfortable enough to smoke a joint (marijuana) while talking with me. Truly I didn't think much of it as it was happening because my mind was in other places. I actually wanted to er on the side of caution and thought maybe I was misunderstanding the situation.

As is typical for me, when I got home in the evening the events of the day started to build in me. I called my brother and sister in law for needed advice. As I talked with them about it all, waves of reality and the gravity of the situation flooded through me. I felt silly, duped, didn't want to be labeled a goody good, slightly offended that this person didn't even ask me if I was OK with it, I worried about the safety of Daddy and me, I didn't want to be offensive or judgemental...and the list of thoughts goes on and on.
I know........how many times have I been accused of thinking too much. My pastor calls it analysis paralysis.

I went to the Internet and researched the time frame effects of this drug and what it all means. I even looked to make sure that Texas is not a marijuana legal state. Then I went to Daddy with my experience. He was very receptive to all I had to share and completely agreed that safety is a concern.

I slept pretty restless last night. Daddy had his chemo treatment yesterday and was wiped out. I wasn't sure if his deep sleep was treatment related or medication related so I stayed on the couch where I could hear him if he needed help with anything. The dogs made all kinds of sleepy doggy noises through the night and all wanted to sleep around and on me. Despite all of that, I had this needed conversation formulating in my head that volleyed for my attention as well.

This morning I called this person and had what I felt to be a gracious conversation. First I made sure that I didn't assume anything incorrectly. Then I said I had a request.....
"Being 30 years old, you are an adult and are free to make your own choices. I am not here to argue or debate with you nor will I judge you. What you do and how often you do it is your business. Involving me or Daddy makes it my business. My request is that on the days that you have volunteered to drive us around, it is important that you save your independent smoking choices for after you are finished with us."
He was very open and agreeable.....kind of like a V-8 juice commercial slap like wow you are right I should have thought of that.
Then I wrapped it up with gratitude and a thin layer of guilt.
"I so appreciate all that you have done in being available for Daddy. You have been here for Daddy since his diagnosis. It is a huge responsibility to think about his condition and his safety and I know you will be around here every day with your support and care even after I have gone back to my family."

I know some would say I was way to light but that is the way I felt guided to handle things for now.

Daddy is doing really good with this chemo session I think.
He had a 6 hour treatment yesterday and is now wearing a pump that is administering a low dose of chemo around the clock until Friday morning. The way I understand it, chemo blocks the cells from being able to reproduce. The treatment doesn't know the difference between a good cell and a bad cell though. Consequently because his cells can't reproduce right now, the energy he has at this moment has to last him all week. That is why I am so grateful for the 2 weeks that he had with no treatment so that he could build up a bit of storage. As long as I stay ahead with his medications he doesn't get very queasy and a low dose of morphine actually makes him perky and talkative for a fair window of time.

He is doing well enough in fact that the doctor has decided to have him do one more treatment in March. I talked with my family a couple of days ago about it all. As much as I miss my family, we have decided that it would be best for me to stay here until Daddy is finished with his therapy. There is too much of a change in him for me to leave him alone right now. (Gosh that reminds me: I have got to re-book my return ticket.)

My step-sister has been opening up more and more. She says that before I got here Daddy would barely take one whole can of nutrition formula in a day and didn't keep to a medicine schedule at all. He was always tired and nauseated and kept putting things off in hopes of feeling better "in a few minutes". She says he is a totally different man now. Most days he can now do 5 cans of nutrition and has bumped up his pump from 60 ml per hour to 90 ml per hour. I make his medications for him and write everything down to keep him on schedule. I haven't been pushy in anything. I think I can just pull the "Daddy card" and he won't deny me anything. Whatever works. I just know that he looks better to me than when I first got here and everyone that comes over remarks at the changes in him.
Thank you Father God!

I bought The Shack for Daddy the other day. He just finished reading today and absolutely loved it. He said "I know it is a work of fiction but I sure hope it is really real."
I need to question him further on what he meant by that.

So much more has been going on. A cousin stayed with Daddy while another cousin took me shopping downtown at El Mercado, lunch at Mi Tierra and then an authentic dinner with her Hispanic in-laws. It was a wonderful day. But as I say all of that....it is so very late and I am quite sleepy. I will have to remember to write it all down later.

Thank you Daddy God for being here, for constantly having your love and encouragement around. Thank you for your guidance and your grace and your strength. You are so amazing!

Thank you for your encouragement and for keeping us in your prayers.
Have a blessed and wonderful week!


  1. Dear Julie

    You handled an awkward situation with tact and a gentle assertiveness. So very well done.

    I'm pleased your being there is helping your dear Dad so much, and I'm feeling very privileged to read your thoughts. That you are there and quietly helping seems to be helping your Dad so much through the treatment and towards wellness.

    Sending much love and care to you both (and all the doglets),

    Michelle xxx (Zebbycat is snoring away zzzzz)

  2. Well done with your handling of that situation. Glad your daddy is doing better - enjoy the rest of your visit. Stay safe...

  3. Michelle....thank you. At first I really worried about what to say and then I remembered I am an adult. giggle giggle.

    I am so glad to be here with my dad. I miss my family like crazy but am so grateful for this time.

    Hi Zebby!

    Lailani....Thank you so much for your good thoughts. I pray all is well for you too.


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