What a difference a day makes! Yesterday we gathered at the hospital once more because my dad had to have another procedure. His blood pressure had dropped and heart rate increased, indicating infection. A scan revealed gall stones and they decided to remove the stones and clean the ducts laparoscopically. I saw Dad last night and the nurse was unable to say when he would receive the trachea tube we were expecting.
This morning, he'd improved so much that they removed the breathing tube altogether and he is breathing on his own entirely. No trachea tube! I think we all consider this somewhat of a miracle as we were all expecting him to need the tracheostomy and this was definitely unexpected! And wonderful.
I called to check on him this afternoon and rather than give me to the nurse for the update the receptionist said, "He wants to talk to you." My dad knew I was on the phone and asked to talk to me! I was so happy and stunned and excited that I just said, "Huh?" I talked to him for about 5 minutes and was so happy to hear his voice that I almost couldn't stand it. After talking to Dad, I immediately called my sister and ordered her to call too. She too was giddy with excitement and relief. What a gift to get to hear his voice and feel positive and hopeful for the first time in two weeks. The only explanation is that the hundreds and hundreds of prayers from Dad's family and friends have been answered. Huge networks of people including several churches and friends of friends have been praying for his recovery and today those prayers were answered. How grateful we all are!
It is really strange to see my father in such a vulnerable state. My dad, 6'3", retired police officer with 35 years experience. Larger than life. To see him in these circumstances feels impossible. I don't know how to comfort him because that has never been my job. It feels so foreign to try to reassure him, or soothe him. And what a strange place in my life to be. To have my daughter fast asleep in her bed and my father asleep at the hospital. I feel like I'm in the middle of two realities. A daughter and a mother. My role as a daughter is so different now. I don't know what I even mean.