Father’s Day

My sweet dad has cancer.

A horrible cancer, aggressive and disfiguring.

That’s kind of a graceless way to tell you all this, and I’m sorry. I have been trying to wrap my mind and heart around this reality for several weeks now. Mom and Dad don’t have a computer so they won’t be reading this– my sister occasionally prints a few posts out and brings them over, but obviously, not this one. I am hyper-sensitive to their right to privacy, but this situation is not a secret and I am weary of trying to ‘write around it.’ It has been the elephant in the virtual room every time I sit down to write this blog, wracking my brain to come up with something light, or funny or interesting. It follows me around, tapping me on the shoulder and reminding me of its reality whenever I start trying to make plans for my summer, or the week ahead, or the next… hour.

I’m really not trying to be all dramatic or create a ‘moment’ here. I mean, Daddy is 93 years old. He has had two heart attacks and stent surgery. The fact that he is mortal and won’t be with us for much longer is not a startling new concept to me. But the method of his passing, the actual cause of his death is not anything I have let myself spend a lot of time thinking about, except for an inward, involuntary “Oh dear God, NO!” reaction whenever I would hear a horror story about the agonizing, lingering death of someone’s friend or uncle or whatever. I guess I thought/hoped/prayed that maybe his heart would just continue to slow down until one morning, he simply wouldn’t wake up. Peacefully in his sleep. You know, the way every one of us wants to go.

And of course, this could still happen. But what looms large on the horizon is this diagnosis, this unthinkable diagnosis that puts a very different face on what we all want the end of Daddy’s life to look like. He and Mom are facing the news with their usual dignity and faith, but they are frightened, I can hear it in their voices when I call them. They are also more than a little confused with all of the medical jargon and the various specialists talking about possible options (very very few) and courses of treatment (even fewer). They are trying their best to keep life as normal as possible- one of the first things Mom said to me was, “We can’t treat him like he has one foot in the grave!” When I talk to them on the phone, our conversations are very much like they have always been; it isn’t until we are wrapping things up that I allow myself to oh-so-casually ask, “So, Daddy, how are you feeling?” “Fine!”, is his usual answer, which is true, I guess. The symptoms haven’t yet reached the point where they greatly affect his day-to-day, and last week’s MRI showed that the cancer hasn’t yet reached his brain. How much of their attitude is denial, and how much is hope? I have no idea, but you know what? I’m thinking a little denial is not a bad thing under these circumstances. I wish I had some.

My two sisters live in the same town, thank God. It is incredibly hard to be removed from this situation by time and distance, as my brothers Joel and Matt and I are. But I know it is even harder for the ones that are there. My sisters are on the front lines of all of this, they are driving mom and dad to the doctors and taking notes and patiently explaining the medical terms, and showing up with casseroles and encouragement. They are also the ones researching the disease on the internet, stumbling onto horrible pictures and calling me with shaking voices. I ache for them, and for my brother Jonny, who lives about 20 minutes away and comes over to mow the lawn, and work in the garden with Mom and fix things around the house. He is a good son and a good man. But it is Carolyn and Liz that are, and will be, bearing the brunt of the caregiving and my love and respect for them knows no bounds. They are the salt of the earth, my sisters– true Southern women, filled with grace, grit and guts.

Once again, this is where the rubber meets the road as far as faith is concerned. Either I believe all of those things I have been writing and talking about my entire life, or I don’t. Sadly, I have lived too long and seen too much to have the illusion that God is some kind of Celestial Santa Claus, doling out goodies according to our ‘naughty or nice’ list. I know that believing in God does not translate into a Get Out of Life Scot-Free Card. I have seen too many tragedies occur in the lives of faith-filled, innocent people to believe that bad things only happen to bad people. And frankly, I don’t understand that because trust me, in Tori’s World that’s exactly how it would work. Good people would never suffer uncomprehending loss, children would never get sick and die, wars, famine and man’s inhumanity to man would simply not exist, and my parents would effortlessly and painlessly slip into the next world where they would be greeted with a big ol’ angel parade, or something.

But I don’t get to choose what life is going to bring,  just what I will do with it. I do get to choose how I will process my pain, what I will believe and what I will reject. And this much is clear:

I do not believe in a God that dangles healing and protection over our heads like a doggie biscuit, instructing us to jump a little higher, pray a little harder, be a little more perfect and He just might be moved to dole out a miracle or two. Or not. You never know, He’s tricky like that.

That is not my God.

My God is filled with such love for us that we can’t even begin to comprehend its depth and intensity. It is all-encompassing, not remotely dependent on how ‘deserving’ we are, or how closely we follow the rules. He is so much more interested in knowing us than keeping score. He is who He says He is, but He also remembers that we are basically mudpie people, made from dust and subject to being kind of a mess-making species until the day we return to it. He loves us anyway. And at the core of my belief system, my personal Apostle’s Creed if you will, is the unshakable knowledge that whatever shitstorm this life can bring (and it can bring some mighty ones, self-induced or not– sometimes I wonder if He’s ever second-guessed that whole ‘free will’ concept…) my God has promised me that I will not be alone in it. He will never leave me or forsake me, even if I shake my fist at Him in anger and frustration and beg Him to please make this world a little less scary and unpredictable and a little more like my imaginary, trouble-free Tori’s World. Especially for my Dad.

But He won’t leave Daddy alone in this either. I know that. I believe that. I have to.

So if you think of it, please send a prayer (up or out or in) to God this Father’s Day, and please mention Don. God will know who you’re talking about. (See: “eye on the sparrow”, “very hairs of your head are numbered” etc.) Please ask for travel mercies on this, his last journey. Ask for courage for those of us who love him so. And please ask that as we gather in Arkansas to celebrate him, this Father’s Day will be filled with all of the laughter and family and steak-grilling and card games and Homecoming videos and sitting around talking and fun that he can hold; because there’s nothing on this earth he enjoys more.

OH– and chocolates, too. Daddy just loves a good piece of chocolate.

Thanks, you guys.

35 Responses

  1. gracelynn

    Tori, honey, I am so sorry that you are having to face this chapter in your dad’s life like this. I will definitely pray hard for Don, for your mom, and for your entire family. I have dealt with the loss of two grandparents to that dreadful disease – cancer – and know the effects it takes, not only on the one carrying the disease, but on the family watching them. I am so thankful that you know that God is there for you and don’t you let the devil attack you and make you think otherwise. He is right there, carrying you through this journey. I love you honey and am praying hard!

  2. MeaganW

    This post brings tears to my eyes, Tori. Not only because it is a sad situation, but because I can completely identify with what you are going through. I lost my Mom when I was 20 years old, back in 2005. She was 54. She too had a horrible, aggressive, disfiguring cancer. Having walked through it, I wish I could have some great spiritual, moral, comforting advice for you. But, nearly 4 years later, I still do not have this kind of thing figured out yet. Even for Christians, death in and of itself is difficult. But when you have to see a person in prolonged suffering, you can’t help but shake your fist at God and beg and plead with Him to make sense of why He’s allowing this.

    The beauty of it for me is that God sees all of these “shitstorms” of life on the other side of there. He sees things that we cannot when we’re walking through it. And regardless of how frustrating and terrible it can be, we just have to cling onto to His garment and ride it out, whatever happens.

    Know that you are loved, Tori. Thank you for being transparent and honest enough to write about the reality of this situation. I do not think it is talked openly enough, and perhaps that is a part of why there is so much fear and uncertainty associated with it. I’m praying for you and your family.

  3. dijea

    This was beautifully written and your love for your parents is there for everyone to read. I have tears in my eyes just thinking about how you feel. I wish you the strength to get through this, and your father will be in my prayers everyday. I have always been shy about talking about my beliefs, but I know in my heart that if you ask him he will walk by your side and you aren’t alone.

    My parents are too reaching that point – my father has had two heart attacks, a quadruple bypass, diabetes and seems to be aging before my eyes. You, your sisters and your family will be in my prayers too.

  4. Phyllis R

    Tori, my heart and prayers are with you and your precious family. I will not go into depth of my experiences because at this point in time they aren’t important. Your posting so beautifully put how life is and how our God is there through every step of it. Your precious Daddy is in my prayers for all the things you ask and more.

    ((((((Tori and family)))))))

  5. Busymom

    Aw, man.

    I am so sorry.

    Ya know? Someone has got to be that percentage that does great, why not him? Your sisters really need to get off the Internet, though. I learned that a long time ago.

    He’s the same guy as he was yesterday and the day before. I don’t mean this lightly at all, and I struggle with it, but all you can do it take it one day at a time.

    I love that picture, and I hope Don as a fantastic Father’s Day.

    My thoughts and prayers are with him, you and your family.

  6. jonny

    Wow. I suspected something was up, but not this. So much comes to mind but at a loss as to what to actually write, share at the moment.

    There’s a new Pastor at one of the churches I help out at. We both attended a prayer meeting held every Thursday morning last Thursday. We ended up being the only ones there, so we just shared a lot for over an hour. It’s supposed to be only an hour long, though. Anyway, one thing I shared was how for most of my life I never got why Jesus wept. That is until a few months ago. At least it seemed to be some insight into it. When I was younger I asked a teacher or two about it, but couldn’t connect with their answer(s) at the time.

    Anyway, in short He cares, deeply. And even though He understands our being of little faith, comprehension, it doesn’t mean that it doesn’t get to Him at times. I pray that whatever fears, concerns, uglinesses of various sorts and varieties start bearing their nasty little heads, no one in Him strays too far from the fact that He cares deeply, knows what He’s doing, allowing, and is the only one to be trusted, depended on in any given situation.

    Also, as I’ve written earlier, dealing with, surviving is one thing, recovering another, and often the trickier, more time consuming of the two. My prayers will be going out for all involved in this situation for some time now. Thanks for sharing.

    Much love,


  7. rachelbaker

    ((Tori)) I have been praying for you, your Dad and the whole family ever since I heard the news. I will continue to do so.

    Congratulations on getting rid of that elephant, this blog must have been so hard to write. We love you.

  8. themema


    Make this a vacation for all of you. Leave the worry behind, and realize that NOTHING will change or happen right then at that moment, and give your DAD the gift he wants most. Normalcy. Pretend the Big C is not in the room. You can do this. Make it the unspoken Father’s Day gift that you give to him. Build the most wonderful memory of family together that you have ever had. Make if a Father’s Day that will cherish, and all the family will cherish. The purpose of life is to live until we die, not to die as we wait.

  9. themema

    What cancer cannot do

    Cancer is so limited.
    it cannot cripple love
    it cannot shatter hope
    it cannot corrode faith
    it cannot eat away peace
    it cannot destroy confidence
    it cannot kill friendship
    it cannot shut out memories
    it cannot silence courage
    it cannot invade the soul
    it cannot reduce eternal life
    it cannot quench the spirit

    Author: -unknown-

    …. I would have to add….Unless we allow it to.

  10. ruthiebear

    Tori, I will certainly pray for your Dad and your entire family as you have asked. I will not give you platitudes. I had a lot of questions about my faith and GOd when my dear Mom suffered so before her death. But God is big enough and loving enough to handle the hard questions. May His Presence be your safe place during this time.

  11. auburn60

    I’ve prayed for you and your dad ever since I found out about the diagnosis. I will include Carolyn and Liz and all your siblings in those prayers from now on.
    You and all those siblings are such a talented, gifted, wonderful legacy for him. Although I’ve never met him, I love the little pictures of him I have in my mind from your photos and stories: your parent’s anniversary, trying to ‘encircle’ their arms to drink a toast, his face when he surprised Janet at the L.R. concert, picture of you and your dad in the doorway…and that wonderful picture in front of the tree with the gold leaves. I can only imagine his wisdom and love for you and your family. I know you have many, many more little vignettes to carry in your heart.
    You know I’ll do anything I can to help. And I’m as close as a call or e-mail. And you know I am a fast driver. :)

  12. belinda

    You have all been in our prayers and will continue to be. I have been praying for your sweet Daddy and Momma every day since you told me about it. I have said many prayers for that peace for them that only God can give and i will continue to do so.

    I will say extra prayers for a very special Fathers Day for your entire family. One that will hold some very very dear memories for all of you. Hold on to each and every one of them. I am like you, I believe that God is a God of love and will be there for each and every one of you each and every day. We saw that happen in April when Troy’s Mother passes away. God was so real and was there with every one every minute of every day. We could not have made it without him and I know he is going to be there with his arms wrapped around each and every one of you during this time. HE is always so faithful! Praying for all of your family, those who are right there and those of you who live away. That you will feel God’s love, lean on him and he will be your rock to get you through this.

  13. twenty9eleven

    Tori, as you may remember, I just lost my mom three months ago today from cancer. I’ve known of your dad’s illness since one of your posts mentioned it a few months back. That’s when I “virtually” introduced myself to you here. I have been praying for your dad and your family. Your blog post beautifully sums up the dichotomy of human emotion and a supernatural faith.

    Have a special time this weekend. It will be strange in that you will consciously be recording memories in your heart knowing there just won’t be many opportunities like this left. Celebrate each moment. Each syllable. Each moment of laughter, and each tear.

    Continue to, as I call it, self-medicate with your writing. It’s a wonderful outlet to process all that is jumbled around inside. My prayers continue to be with you and your family. Thank God we don’t have to talk Him into what He doesn’t want to do. His love and mercy are sufficient to see us through anything.


  14. Pearl

    Paul admonished the Romans to “weep with them that weep”. My cyber hand is holding yours as we weep together. I have walked where you are walking (with my mom) and where your sisters are walking (with my dad). They are two sides of the same coin and they both feel just as helpless. But not hopeless. Because our God is who says He is we have hope. If we hold on to Him we can also have peace and comfort and the certainty that there will be a day when death no longer has a place in our world. Because God’s Perfect World will be better than Tori’s World or Pearl’s World. In His Perfect World death will be vanquished, a defeated enemy, and we will have no need to weep ever again.
    In the meantime my prayers are with you and your family as you walk through this. I pray that you will find joy in the midst of heartache. That your lights will shine brightly and that you will sing a song of victory when this trial is completed.

  15. Cynders

    Tori…I fell in love with you parents when I met them that year in Indianapolis — they are absolute dolls!

    I know how very close your family is, how much you all love each other, laugh together, play together, worship together, and have clung to each other as you’ve faced fearful days in the past as you’ve dealt with other health issues in each other’s lives.

    I know it will be hard to keep that elephant out of the room as you all gather together this weekend to enjoy your relationship with your earthly father this weekend — but your Heavenly Father will equip you with his sufficiency…and will give you a weekend that will forever be etched in your heart because of the way you have honoured your parents and have loved them so deeply.

    I am praying for you, and I know that these cannot be easy days for you. Thank God that your father knows THE Father, and is in HIS hands. He can’t be in any better hands.

    God bless you all.

  16. rockin robyn

    One of the things that ministers to me more than any preacher ever could, are me listening to and learning from the words to gospel music/Christian music. A wonderful song I’ve been paying attention to of late is a song the Booth Brothers sing called “Standing Tall”. I would like to dedicate this song to you, dear Tori, and your whole family. You’ve got a wonderful Christian based following here with this blog… Russ has a following that he brings the “good-news” to with his singing… You both just give and give and give – I bet more than you know! It’s time you become the receiver once and awhile and take in the blessings of love in prayer that will be poured onto you and your family in this time of need. As the song says “sometimes the faithful ones are called to bare a little more”…

    I’m sure your father’s wonderful life helped inspire so many to grow in faith and I pray that a beautiful story will be made visual of how strong his faith was and how strong your families faith will be, when he is taken from this life. People are watching… unsaved love ones are searching, watching and learning!

    All my love and prayers go out to you and your family Tori! I so wish I could do for you what you have done for me (with this blog or Russ does with his singing) I helplessly offer you at least that!

  17. baldwin

    Tori my heart goes out to you and your whole family. Having ‘lost’ my husband and four siblings to cancer, I can empathize with you and yet not truly know how you feel for we’re all different. Thank you for your blog, which must have been heartbreaking in itself to write. So many people told me that if I had enough faith Herbert, my husband would be healed. But God had prepared me for what was to come and he was healed when God took him home.
    I’m praying for you Tori and for all your family, especially today Father’s day

  18. jonny

    Man, I truly find it hard to believe that believers now-a-days could still think that way, or say things like that to you Baldwin. Breaks my heart reading that. Really sorry you had to have that thrown at you. I’ll pray for them.

  19. CarolynR

    All I know is “He is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think …. ” We don’t know how He will work or what he will do, but he is passionate about us. His love conquers all. My love and prayers are with you and your family Tori x

    Baldwin I too find it difficult when “christians” teach that faith is like a commodity, something that you can get on the open market! Faith in Hebrew means complete trust, and that is the best thing we can do.

  20. jonny

    Well, hooked up with a dear friend at church, after the mass, who’d been away three weeks. He let me know his father passed away a few days ago. There was some crying and hugging. Fortunatelty, all his children were able to be with him before he went. Two were vacationing in other countries, but were able to make it back in time. He went peacefully. He was expected to go sometime soon, but not this suddenly. Prayers for the family would be appreciated. Apparently it’s not easy for Finns to grieve.


  21. GRITSinNC

    Tori, you wrote that so beautifully. I love the picture of your Daddy and dog. What a handsome, sweet looking man. I hope you had a wonderful day today in spite of the elephant in the room. You’re blessed to have such a faith-based, loving and wonderful family. I’m not good with words at times like this so I’ll just say I’ll be praying for your daddy, you, and your family.

    Like someone else said, certain songs can help so much. I find that reading words with the tune in the back of my mind to some of the old hymns is a great form of worship. My favorite has become “Great is Thy Faithfulness”…it really touches my heart. I’ve had hard times in many ways, including financial and heartache, but as the song says …”morning by morning new mercies I see”, and “all I have needed Thy hand hath provided”…”strength for today and bright hope for tomorrow” – Great is Thy Faithfulness.

    Baldwin, I’m glad you were prepared and that comment didn’t upset you. I have two incurable chronic diseases and I’ve had someone recently telling me to pray for healing…that in faith, God would heal. Well, I have complete faith and I know God can do anything and sometimes He does heal people unexpectedly, but it’s certainly not likely in my case.
    CarolynR, I like the way you put it…some people treat faith like a commodity.

    God bless Tori and all of you.

  22. carsmith

    Good evening, Tori,
    This is Theresa and we are in Hot Springs. Carolyn just let me read your Blog about your Daddy. My heart just aches for you, but I do know that our Abba Father (Daddy) will hold you and yours close and walk you through this unknown territory. I love the photo of your Daddy, he could pose for the front of “Father’s Day” cards.
    I pray that God orders your steps in His Word. I pray this in Jesus’ precious Name.
    “Let’s pray always and never give up.” Luke 18:1
    Much love, Theresa

  23. BrownEyedGirl

    Tori, Please know that your Dad, Mom and all of your family are in my prayers.

    Hugs going out to you.

  24. elginkid

    Tori, I read your post as I completed my 19th Father’s Day without my dad. Please know you and your entire family are in my prayers.

    My mom lived with us the last 5 years of her life until she passed at age 88 with pancreatic cancer in April 2008. As her primary caregiver, I truly appreciate how you recognize the efforts of your siblngs in your post. I am sure it is difficult being long distance from your parents, but being the onsite or local caregiver has a whole different set of issues. Please continue to support and love your siblings.

    I made a post on my blog about hospice and how it helped us provide a wonderful and peaceful passage for my mom from this life to her eternal home. Here’s the url, if you’re interested. http://ed-adams.blogspot.com/2009/05/hospice-done-well-is-beautiful.html

    I have made and continue to make various posts about the last 3 months of my mom’s life with us.

    I pray for God’s love and peace in your life during this difficult time.


  25. jonny

    I’ll keep your upcoming posts in prayer Ed. Thanks for sharing.

  26. LindaB

    Tori, I love that picture of your dad! I suppose ninty years of living has a tendency to leave evidence of your character etched on your face………and your dad’s face says that he is a gentle, kind, loving, quick to laugh and slow to anger “young” man! A true family man and one who finds incredible joy in his wife and children……and his God. There’s a twinkle in his eye that says he’s very intelligent too…..kind of like you! His family is going to be a wonderful comfort to him in his last days! And after the shock of this diagnosis is past, he will be a wonderful comfort to you. At the end, God will whisper incredible Heavenly secrets in his ear that will make his leaving this world easier for him……while your faith will make it easier for you, seeing the evidence of God’s grace in your dad. Not that it’s going to be all rosy and churchy—-these human bodies are frail and troublesome and messy business. But God is hopelessly in love with our souls and can’t seem to leave us alone…….or resist the urge to pleasantly surprise us with joy in our most dire moments. He’s just that way! You’ll see.

    I’m praying for your dad’s quiet and peaceful passing…….in God’s good time! He may outlive many of us! And he may still go in his sleep, as he does in Tori’s world. And I’m praying for calm and constant faith for his sweet and devoted children and wife. Live every day to the fullest…..let go of things that don’t really matter in the big scheme of things. And make your gatherings as normal as possible—–while my dad was dying in the hospital, he requested many times for my sister and I to come and just laugh and banter like we used to do—-that gave him joy, even in his dying. So everytime you all gather at Mom and Dad’s, eat well and often, play raucous games of cards, and enjoy the day out loud! That will be a rich and invaluable gift to him. And it will comfort him to know he was the foundation, along with your mom, of this happy and engaging brood!

    And know we pray for you often and earnestly……like God said to do. We are humbled that you would ask us! And we love you and your family!

  27. missycouncil

    Tori, please know that prayers are already being prayed. I know we just became acquainted at Family Fest, but I feel like I’ve known you for years. Being raised as a “Baptist PK,” I have seen families, mine included, go through the “cancer battle.” Definitely a tough road, but God always makes the path not so bumpy, even on the worse days. You are a very strong woman, and you will get through this, as will your the rest of your family. You have a strong foundation of faith, and wow, does that make a difference!!! I love you and your family!

  28. Barbara M. Lloyd

    Oh my, I feel all of those things that everyone else has already said. This kind of thing is no stranger to me…but I have known and have leaned on the knowledge that my loved ones were going Home. I can only imagine the terrible pain if this were not so.

    But, Tori, I just came from reading that a lady read your blog and then simply got in her car and drove a long way to be in time to go to church with her dad and mom on Father’s Day morning. She was inspired by your blog….and here’s what her dad said as she was going out the door to return home: “This is the best Fathers’ Day I’ve ever had.”

  29. MostlySunny

    We’ve gone through this twice. The last time, my son said “I hate this journey because I don’t like how it’s gonna end up.”

    Just know we are all with you in spirit as you walk this road. Cherish every moment…You are loved!

  30. Chubs

    Tori, You will be in my thoughts and prayers. I know the pain and hurt that you must be feeling. The God we serve is bigger than this and will see you through it. I so appreciate you keeping things real. Your family is such a great encouragement to me as I am SURE you are to others. The number of encouraging comments speaks a ton. Hey, we got your back.

    I lost my mother to cancer when I was 29 years old. She was 54. To this day there are days where I still shake my fist at God and question why he would do that to me. My mother fought cancer from her very early 30’s until she went to her heavenly home. This past father’s day was tough for me. The thought of my mom never knowing my kids and never getting to see me be a father hurts ever so deeply. She missed my first child by just over a month. If I had all day, I could tell you how I truly believe that my mom put in a favor for me when she walked through the gates of heaven. God brought us joy after the storm in a little bundle that was 10 days old. My son is now five. We struggle with infertility and just after adoption got pregnant with my daughter and then almost two years later, through foster care, God brought us our youngest son (now adopted).

    My point here is that God will take care of you. God knows the deepest desires of your heart. I truly believe that God brings joy after the storms. God has shown me countless times that he knows what he is doing. I do believe in the Bible it says to trust in the Lord with all of your heart, soul, body, and mind.

    Like I said before, we ALL got your back. We will be praying for you and I know God will wrap his loving arms and hold you, care for you, comfort you, give you grace and peace through this.

  31. Forgiven54

    Hey Tori. I am a fan of Russ’s and read your blog thro a link. My heart goes out to you during this time. I know it’s hard, but God will see you through. I will be praying that your Dad has an easy time as God will allow and that you and your family keep your faith strong and close. It’s the most important thing that you have right now. I have had to endure deaths of close family members since I was 11 yrs old. It doesnt’ get easier, but you can endure with God by your side. He will literally be right there for you all. Yes, literally. God Bless you and yours. Jean

  32. tori

    I love each and every one of you. I hold you in my heart. You have comforted me, and contributed to the tears that I am currently wiping off of my keypad, because seriously, if I like, short-circuit this computer and can’t write to you and read your replies, it will NOT be pretty.

    Thank you, so much.

  33. swerchon


    I am having a hard time expressing my emotions to you. I feel your pain and feel that my words will fall short to comfort you during this trying time.

    I know that you and your family love our Lord that is extremely comforting and I stress that you all lean heavily on Him – He is holding out His Hand to you – Grab it and don’t let go.

    I know that you have received several responses from all these lovely friends – please know that I am here as well and I will continue to pray for you and your family. Please know that we all Love you and your family and we are here for you….

  34. Rick Mills

    If I may encourage you with some words that I have found to help me in the past, and still do today. May they be yours as well, today and tomorrow. ;-)

    When peace cannot be found
    and sleep won’t visit me tonight
    a restless mind that I can’t tame
    how off the floor I call Your name
    sign of silence and the tears begin to fall

    I Cry and You’re the one who hears me calling
    I fall so easily but You’re there to catch me
    say the words that heal me
    I’m safe when I’m with You
    You touch my eyes and I can see

    Oh the comfort that You bring
    when nothing else can reach inside
    sympathetic friends are all around
    their soothing words fall to the ground
    in silence I feel You here with me

    I Cry…

  35. Robin

    Beautifully expressed, a lovely reflection of God’s transforming work in your heart and mind–how else could you have shared this wisdom in the face of pain so effectually?

    I was moved, caught off guard; probably in part because of my own father’s grievous end of life (not disfiguring, but his mind left his body and he didn’t seem to know that…a very sad role reversal of father and daughters/sons for 14 months :( ). You’ve managed to point to the goodness and graciousness of God in the face of heart ache…and I’m with you–I’d rather live in Tori World, but since that’s not possible, I’ll have to choose how I respond to this one.

    You’re a lovely testimony to the God who Knows You Best…and an encouragement to all who stumble across this post. xo

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