Monday, November 23, 2009

Good News / Bad News

What a series of incredibly bad news and good news I've had in the past 48 hours.

Bad News: It started last week. My Dad was diagnosed with stage 3 colon cancer. He'd had surgery to remove the tumor. There have been a lot of complications and on Saturday afternoon they felt more emergency surgery was necessary. They told us we needed to be prepared to say 'goodbye.'

Good News: Several friends offered me frequent flyer miles to help get me and my two sons to Sacramento to see my Dad. This generosity is so heart-warming that I can't begin to say how grateful I am. And even though it was Thanksgiving week, we were able to get on direct flights to Sacramento leaving early Sunday morning.

Bad News: The 6:52am RTD SkyRide bus to the airport never showed up! After waiting for 35 minutes, we decide we'd better drive.

Good News: We make it to the Wally parking lot by the airport in record time! Since I always take the bus, I hadn't been aware of this relatively low-cost parking option so close to the airport.

Bad News: The Wally shuttle takes an incredibly long time to pick everyone up. When we get to the airport, it's just past the cutoff time for getting a boarding pass. A very inflexible woman with a heavy accent tells me I'm going to have to pay $150/ticket to get later tickets that go through Vegas and LA and arrive in Sacramento at 7:30pm. I am uncharacteristically aggressive, insisting that she let me on the 9:15am flight. She doesn't budge.

Good News: I plead my case to an agent at the ticket counter. She tells me she doesn't think I can make it, but gives me boarding passes that will get us through security. We run through the airport. I duck under ropes, cutting to the front of the security line. A security lady tells me I can't do that. Having watched several Nicolas Cage movies lately, I sport a "Just try and stop me" attitude.

Bad News: I suppose acting like a crazy person caused some suspicions to airport security. They pull me aside and tell me they are going to inspect my bags. As they are slowly digging through my stuff, confiscating toothpaste and a prescription skin cream, I suffer from a total meltdown, head in hands, and sob like an inconsolable baby. Scotty pats my back and tells me it will be OK.

Good News: I recover my composure and carry on with the marathon-speed race through the airport to the gate, arriving one minute before departure time.

Bad News: They still don't let us on the plane.

Good News: They get us on another direct flight leaving two hours later at no additional cost. Considering it is Thanksgiving week, this is miraculous.

Good News: We make it to the hospital. Dad is happy to see us. Everyone says he's looking better. They may even be able to fix this latest complication without surgery. Mom is incredibly relieved, ready to celebrate Thanksgiving.

Bad News: My Mom wakes me up at 11:30pm. She's crying. They're taking Dad in for emergency surgery after all. Sobbing, she tells me of the final conversation they had...things he tried to remember to tell her, wanting to make sure she'd be OK, telling her a final, "I Love You."

Good News: I'm here with Mom. I crawl into her big bed with her and she calms down. We watch TV, doze, and pray as we wait for a phone call from the hospital. The last surgery took 11 hours. This one could take as long.

6am Still waiting and praying that the next phone call we receive will be good news.


  1. Good news: Dad made it through the surgery. Still not out of the woods, but we're hopeful.

  2. This is Yvette, posting for Rebecca. Thank you, Rebecca for all the support during my father's illness.


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