Friday, July 4, 2008

Saying Goodbye

Today was bittersweet. We traveled to Independence to play a concert for their very fitting fourth of July celebration and then to Manchester to play at the house of one of our own. We band nerds have to stick together. We're like a family...okay, more like a very dysfunctional family, but nonetheless, we stick together. About two years ago one of our members Rick, was diagnosed with colon cancer and started aggressive chemo treatments at the Mayo clinic. He is a long time band director, husband and father of three young kids. He went through months of radiation and chemo and they thought they had him in remission but found another inoperable tumor that was blocking critical organs needed for digestion. This past week, they called Hospice and gave him around three weeks to live. So today, we packed up our stands, chairs and instruments and plunked ourselves right down in his backyard and played an encore concert just for his family and neighbors. It was probably one of the hardest things I've had to do in a while. We kept the music fun and lively but it was hard to ignore the intense sadness that invaded the faces of the people in the crowd. Rick sat amongst his family and neighbors and listened to the music, barely able to speak and walk, but managing to crack a smile in appreciation. I bit my lip trying to fight back tears and couldn't help think of his wife and kids. His youngest, barely two, will only have vague memories of her father. I didn't know how to leave his house today, weather or not to say goodbye. I hate goodbyes, but who doesn't? I don't know about Rick's salvation, if he was walking with the Lord and saved by the Grace of God. Surely the most important thing of all. So if you think about it today or tomorrow, just lift up his family in your prayers.

What would you do different if the Dr told you three weeks was all you had left? Would you spend every waking hour with your kids? Would you travel to places you've only dreamed about? Would you call that person you've been holding a grudge against and apologize? They say we should live each day like it's our last, which...sometimes I believe is true....especially when toddler chases you with a butter knife :) It just makes me want to hold my kids closer, kiss Lonnie and tell him I love him more often than I should and not take advantage of the days God has given us here on earth.

Okay, enough with the sad..bring on the happy! Speaking of...Happy Independence Day!!! Baylor spent the day with Grandma Kris, Papa Steve, Bri and Kort....driving them insane instead of me!!! He was in heaved and truly wore them out. When I came to pick him up, they were all laying on the floor and couch and Baylor was running circles around them. Welcome to my world folks, I think he sneaks some of my coffee in the morning! Lonnie and Brody got to spend some quality time together...enough so that Lonnie actually made the comment about sticking with two kids because we each can give them one on one time. He had the dishes done, kid bathed and laundry upstairs and I didn't even ask!!!! Major props to the hubby.

Tomorrow is the shower (part one) for our family and then Sunday shower (part two) is for friends. Looking forward to seeing everyone. I even get to wear a dress.....!!! Holy buckets.

Go hug your kids. Kiss your spouse....and then eat some chocolate.

1 comment:

Jill said...

I almost started crying when I read this. I can only imagine how sad that must have been. A good reminder to enjoy each moment and to stop worrying about the small stuff.

I love your blog by the way...your stories about your boys crack me up!