If you’re looking for a great mommy juice er… I mean, Cabernet, Merlot, Shiraz, or Chardonnay, Rachel is your gal. Her wine column on Momtastic is awesome!
Rachel also has her own blog, Mommy Needs a Vacation and I am happy to have her (straight off a Hawaiian vacation) as my Letters For You guest today with a beautiful and heartfelt letter to her father.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010 was one of the longest days of my life. Not only did it involve a long plane flight, it involved the most worry I had endured in my life. You had been lying in an ICU hospital bed for ten days and were now on life support. Your body invaded with infection; MRSA infection, in your lungs, in your spine. We still did not know if it was in your heart. The flight was a long one.
I stepped off the airplane in Hawaii and was immediately overcome with the hot, sticky air. Yet, I was cold, with a shiver that I could not shake. On the way from the airport to the hospital, my younger brother John explained your condition to me in more detail. He told me about the machines, the beeps, and the tubes. I had experience visiting a loved one in the ICU before when Sadie was born, but I knew this time would be different.
As I made my way through the hospital, I tried to hold my head up, stay strong and most of all, keep my emotions at bay for Mom. I was there to see you and be by your side, but was also there to support her, be her sounding board, be a shoulder for her to cry on.
Once inside the ICU, the coolness, the sounds, and the smells were almost too much for me to withstand. I passed room after room of extremely sick people and wondered what you were going to look like. More importantly, I was worried that you would not know that I was there.
I worried that I was too late.
As I entered your ICU room, the sight of you took my breath away. Lying there, helpless with IV’s, tubes and the giant breathing tube down your throat. Even though John told me it was important to approach and talk to you normally, I still hesitated.
I worried that you would never know I was there.
I worried that you wouldn’t make it.
I worried that I wouldn’t be strong enough.
I approached your bed, took your swollen hand and squeezed it tightly. John opened your eyes and told you that I was there and just for a small moment, you focused on me. You then quickly slipped back into your slumber, but not before a single tear left your eye and ran down your cheek.
It was in that one tear that I knew I was not too late.
It was in that one tear that I felt the hope grow inside of me.
It was in that one tear that I knew you would be okay.
As I sat across the table from you just this past week while visiting you in Hawaii, I couldn’t help but think about the last time I had seen you there. This time was much different. I got to enjoy your company, hug you, drink fabulous wine with you and watch you be a grandfather to my children.
Thank you for being you. Thank you for fighting for your life. Thank you for being my dad.
I love you,