I haven't blogged in awhile, dear readers. I had hoped that by now you would have been regaled with stories of England - new friends I'd met along the way and old friends I'd gotten the chance to see again.
But such was not the case.
I was supposed to leave for the UK on June 13. On June 12, my father called to tell me he was going into the hospital to try some new medications they wanted to put him on. He didn't sound good... so I left immediately for Houston.
Dad seemed ok as I checked in on him. So, my plans were still in place.
The next morning was scary. Dad looked worse than I'd ever seen him. I was fearful of leaving, but dad and the rest of the family said I should leave, and the doctors and nurses weren't giving me any clues as to how urgent the need for me to stay was.
Well, I boarded the plane with misgivings, and cried most of the way to London. I knew as we were passing over NYC that I was going to have to return immediately. It's a good thing, too, because waiting for me in the UK were messages from my family urging me to return.
I spent exactly one hour in the duty free hall collecting souvenirs, but never left the airport until my flight home was called.
Dad was released home to hospice care. He looked really bad, and my heart sank as I watched him try to breathe and to just do what he had to to survive. But, miracle of miracles... he got better daily! I'm convinced that hospitals kill people.
I was able to come home to Austin feeling that dad was at least stable.
On July 11, I got a call at 5 am from my brother that dad wasn't breathing well. 30 minutes later I got the other call that dad had passed away.
The arrangements and funeral and such were all a blur.
Two weeks later on July 27th, one of my best friends passed away from cancer. Again, I was involved in the post-passing frenzy of plans, parties (she didn't want a memorial), and mourning.
In addition, my friend Brenda's husband, Mitch, passed away in June and two other best friends have moved/are moving very far away from Austin.
I've been trying to work up the passion for another trip - just to keep from going totally under, but thoughts of England are so tied with my dad's illness that it may take awhile. I've considered going other places, but nothing has spoken to me yet.
Anyway, didn't want you thinking I'd forgotten about you. It's just been a really tough summer.