I was at work yesterday when I got the call. "Come home. Now. He's really bad."
I've not mentioned it here before, but my father has cancer. It's one of the reasons I've been back to Michigan so much recently. It's actually why I bought the airplane--so that I could get back more, and quicker if need be.
It took me five minutes to tell work that I was leaving and wrap up what I was working on. Then it was a fast drive home to grab a bag and pick up Murphy, with a call to the airport FBO to fuel my plane and have it ready for immediate departure.
I'd been watching the weather for days, contemplating a trip up here this week-end anyway. But the weather was looking marginal at best, and my father'd sounded so good when we talked on the phone on Thursday. He was up and moving around and we'd discussed going out to do something when I got there. I'd already decided to postpone my trip until the following week-end because the weather was looking dodgy, but then I got the call and I knew that it wasn't being made lightly.
The flight was somewthing else, to be sure. I won't go into detail but I broke just about every rule of VFR operation in my haste to get home in time. My ride was waiting for me at the airport on the other end and just a few minutes after landing, I was on my way to my father's place.When I got here, I saw that he'd been moved to a hospital bed in the living room by the hospice staff, not a good sign, because you just knew that it was meant to be temporary. I couldn't believe that he'd gotten so bad so quickly since my last visit up here just a few weeks ago. But he was awake, and he recognized me and smiled as he said my name. That alone made the whole stupid, risky trip worth it. He knew I was here for him.
Now just a few hours later, he doesn't recognize me or anyone else. He alternates between a drug-induced rest and periods of agitation where he just wants to get out of bed. He doesn't appear to recognize me any more. But he did when I got here and I have to think that deep down, he still knows I'm here.
Posting's going to be sparse for a while as I deal with this. And your prayers will be appreciated.
Cancer's a motherfucker.