Shine a Light
2011 was a year of hard lessons and hard-won victories. I learned more about my self, my strengths and my limitations, than I ever thought to comprehend. I stared death in the face, and he blinked. I came to understand the pure power of prayer and the warmth of friendship and love. I learned humility from the selfless generosity of our friends and the anonymous kindness of strangers. Perhaps most importantly, I learned to live in the precious present, one day at a time, and to appreciate the wondrous gift of life.
One of the toughest lessons to absorb teaches that it can be infinitely more difficult to be the caregiver than to be the patient. I was raised to be stolidly and obstinately independent. Experiencing others' ministrations, even though totally unable to manage it on my own, was difficult. Watching the patience and care given both by Marian and by professional nurses taught me the meaning of "awesome."
Finally, I learned that each bad break or set-back carries the seeds of victory within. I learned that life is all about change and that I should not lament when change becomes challenge, but seek the seeds of victory and tend that garden until it flourishes.
Like Bob Cratchit in the vision of the death of Tiny Tim...despite the illness, the pain, the uncertainty, and the cost, I am a happy man...I am alive.
My son-in-law Chris Davis, was hospitalized on the day after Christmas. Surgery yesterday revealed that he has a glioma. We do not yet know the prognosis, but we are once again raising voices to Heaven in prayer for him and his family. I sent Chris a quote from Mother Teresa which has helped me keep perspective all year: "I know God will not give me anything I can't handle. I just wish that He didn't trust me so much."
Please pray for Chris and for his family.
If all goes well, we will travel back to Rochester at the end of February or beginning of March to begin my inoculations...just like those given to newborns...as my immune system hopefully begins to establish itself.
God bless all of you who prayed for us and sent us your good thoughts.
Happy New Year!