Monday, March 24, 2008

Progress Report

First off allow me to apologize for not keeping you all up to date. I can't believe it's been almost a week since my last post. To be honest, I attempted to blog several times but found myself at a loss for words. Right now I am sitting in a Panera Bread in Augusta, Ga killing time before I have to go pick up my dad from the doctor's office.

As you may or may not know, I left my house around 11 am on Saturday and drove to Chapel Hill, NC to stay with my friends Rodg & Ang. Rodger was kind and brave enough to volunteer to watch the boys while Ang and I got in some girl time. Major props to Rodg. Ang and I headed to downtown Chapel Hill where we sat in a small cafe/bar, had a few beers, and shed several tears. It was just the medicine my soul (and hers) needed. We talked a lot about my dad and this job thing with Neil, and her struggle settling into Chapel Hill and making friends, and even though it had been a while since our last girl time, it was as if we saw each other everyday. This is the type of friendship that surpasses proximity. I might not know what happens on a day to day basis, but that doesn't affect the connection.

I drove into Augusta on Sunday. The fact that it was Easter Sunday rarely registered to me. It was actually kind of nice. There were no Easter baskets filled with candy or eggs hiding behind the bushes, and I didn't even go to church. But that was okay with me. God was ministering to my soul all day long. From conversations with good friends to sporatic moments in the car, I feel at a place of intimacy with God. And it's been a while since I could say that with confidence. He's is sustaining me with grace and peace, and believe me, I need it.

After I dropped the boys off with Nana and Papa, I went straight to dads. When I arrived, Sherry (step-mom) and Alex (half sister) were gone and Dad was alone. Laying in his bed, only his head and neck poking out from under the covers, laid a very weak, anorexic looking man, a man beaten and battered by a relentless disease. My fears were realized in a dad is dying. He didn't look as bad as I expected after hearing my sister describe his state of being, but as he lifted his arm to eat a piece of orange, I could literally see his two arm bones and a little bit of skin. That was muscle, no fat; just skin and bones. Death is not something I have a lot of experience with...okay, not really any, and being that it is a consuming fear of mine, I literally had to plant my feet on the ground to keep myself from pivoting on one foot and escaping out the front door. I want to remember my dad as he was before the cancer...strong, stubborn, arrogant, and a little bit of a gut hanging over his pants. I'm not sure how I'll handle all of this, but I can look around and see how God has provided and prepared me for this very situation. My in-laws live in the same town, providing me with free, excellent childcare. My friend Pat lives here as well giving me an escape route. His dad died from cancer about three weeks we can relate. There are several old college friends here in Augusta that I haven't seen in 8 years, but are more than willing to hang out or hold my hand if I need it. God is our great provider, and I see that now. It's going to be difficult, probably the hardest thing I have done thus far in my life, facing my darkest fears head on, and I am so thankful that I am not alone.

Thank you all for your prayers and support. I need them and I feel them. Please feel free to stay in touch while I am gone. It's nice to know that people are thinking about you. And if you know anyone that needs some Pampered Chef, I could use a few orders to help pay for this trip. I might be gone a week, two weeks or a's just so unknown right now. I continue to covet your prayers and support, and if I'm gone beyond this week, I would really appreciate if a few of you were willing to take Neil in and make sure he gets fed. He's in Massachusetts this week, but he's coming back this weekend.

In the grace that sustains me,


Colleen said...

Hilary- please let me know if there's anything I can do for you, besides the obvious which is pray. I can make a dinner or something for neil...let me know! *hugs*

Becca said...

I read it

Clare said...

So I made neil dinner tonight but it looks so yummy I kinda want to keep it myself ;-) J/K hopefully he likes it and I'll give you the recipie - it was very easy and cheap

Becca said...

Clare that is so sweet of you.
What great friends Hillary has!!!
Sending you a big hug from Hillary's sister down in Ga.
I will take that recipe, with 3 kids cheap and easy is my middle name.