Sunday, May 15, 2011


I knew someone who used to talk about rollercoasters in terms of stress. When it is really bad it is sort of like this: you are stuck in a rollercoaster park. All of the coasters are unlabeled. You must choose one. So, you get the stress of the choosing, the stress while you wait in line, and then the stress during the ride, and then you get to do it all again. Of course, everyone likes and dislikes different coasters. Give me the smooth ones with lots of up and down and tight curves. The wooden coasters and the ones that go upside down are the ones that alternately make me feel like I need a chiropractic readjustment or just downright sick to my stomach.

Yeah, this post is about my dad. I spoke to him just about a week ago and he was doing well. In fact, he was doing about the same as when he was initially diagnosed. He was still getting up daily and his pain meds hadn't increased at all. In other words, his routine was pretty much the same as right after his initial diagnosis. On Thursday of this past week all of that changed. Bam. No longer did he feel capable of getting out of bed, and he isn't able to eat or drink much of anything. That has affected his ability to speak. His need for pain meds also changed. He went from doing very well to looking like he has a life expectancy of about two weeks.

There are no words to truly express how shocked I am. He was using an alternative treatment that I think might have worked had he found it six months to a year ago. However, I was beginning to hope that it was going to work ~ even now ~ since he wasn't getting worse. You see, I was beginning to disbelieve the original diagnosis. I thought my dad was going to be the person to beat stage 4 cancer.

And then today arrived. My brother called and told me how bad it was and that my dad was not going to beat stage 4 cancer. My dad possibly would not live to see the month of June. Wow.

Hope is the best and the worst thing in the world.

I had to go lie down because it gave me in instant migraine. I know I jumped right in line for the roller coaster. I remember the people in my dream, but I don't know any of them. I just remember my parting shot at all of them being, before I woke up, "I don't have time for your crap and your drama. My dad is dying of cancer." I was literally crying when I came out of that sleep.

I pondered the what to do for a while. Talking on the phone is never good. He can't understand me and now it hurts him to talk. I considered going back up there, but I don't want to remember him like this. That decision was reinforced when I did talk to him today. It greatly upset him when I cried on the phone. He wants me to be okay with his dying. And I will be... eventually. But, I am not sure that it will be in less than a month. I don't want to make his passing worse. This cannot be all about me.

So, I suggested to my brother that I write my dad an email every day and he read it to him. I have decided that it is unimportant if dad remembers our history or not. I remember it. I want him to feel the love in it. And if it jogs his memory, that is wonderful. If it doesn't, than I will be remembering for both of us. It is the last gift I can give him before he goes.

I am thinking that I will post them here. You can read them or not. I will call them Letters To Dad and then give them a subtitle. If that is your thing, read away. If not, come back when it is over. Either way, I understand.

image found at


  1. I will be honored to read your letters (emails) to your dad. Truly honored. And I will be thinking of you and praying.

  2. Great, you are going to post letters and totally make me cry my eyes out! I think it's great though!

    Really though, I'm sooooooo sorry. It's just such a sucky time and no one can do anything to make you feel better. Hugs to you!!!

  3. hugs. I am sorry. Do what you feel you should. I will be praying for you all daily.

  4. I think this is a wonderful way to deal with your feelings a way to communicate with your dad. I'm so sorry you are going through this! I know nothing I say will make it better, but know you are not alone. Even though we've never met, we're "virtually" connnected. Much love and light sent your way.

  5. What a loving gift to your Dad and later to yourself- when you have the strength and solace to read them again one day.
    Robin, we will all be thinking of you and wishing you well during this time. Be gentle with yourself.

  6. This is a wonderful thought and way to give tribute to your dad. Wishing you the best Robin.


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