Grandpa Dick’s Battle

My Dad’s 21-month battle with brain cancer took a sudden turn for the worse this week and I’m making arrangements to fly home.  We found out last week that his treatment is no longer effective and the cancer is spreading fast so my folks met with home hospice in preparation for when they reached the need for hospice care.  An unexpected fall on Sunday evening led to hemorrhaging of the tumor and paralysis of his left side.  Although the ER doctors doubted he would survive the night,  Dad stabilized by Monday morning and was alert…joking with my nieces and nephews when they came to see him.  It has taken us a few days to work out the details on our end but I’m freed up to go home on Friday and stay through next Tuesday.  Fortunately, the big kids are scheduled to fly to Alabama to visit some of Rolf’s family on Friday and thanks to Rolf and a handful of nurse friends, Rudy’s care will be covered here at home!  Rudy had his monthly cardiology appointment yesterday and his heart status has not changed…he remains stable which was confirmation for my heart that I can leave. 

Of course my prayers are for Dad’s comfort and peace…I’d love to make it in time to hug him and sing for him in person but he began experiencing pain today, as expected in this process, and is now sedated on pain medication.  Although they talked on Monday about sending Dad home with hospice care, the plan now is to keep him at the hospital in Lawrence.  I’m comforted by the fact that my brothers are with my Mom and Dad…by the sweet phone conversations I’ve had with my Dad this week…and so deeply grateful for the family trip we were able to make to Kansas over spring break!!  God has been very gracious to us and His peace fills my heart.  Please pray for that peace to blanket my Dad;  for my Mom, brothers & sister-in-law as they walk these hours/days with my Dad and for my precious family as we’re spread all over this next week.  In times like these I just want to gather all my chicks and circle the wagons and instead I’m sending my big kids to the other coast and leaving my little halfheart behind for 5 days…

I’ve been reminded all week of Philippians 4:4-7…verses we shared at Rudy’s dedication and of deep comfort for me the last 21 months.  Here’s a paraphrase:

“Delight yourself in the Lord, yes, and find your joy in Him.

Be known for your gentleness and never forget the nearness of our God.

And don’t worry – whatever is going to come.

Just tell God every detail and the peace of God that no one understands will come to you.

No, don’t worry.  Just tell Him every detail and His peace will come to you.”

Dad and brother Steve on Father's Day 6-19-10
A big smile for Grandpa Dick...sent via IPhone in a snap! Technology can be amazing!

27 thoughts on “Grandpa Dick’s Battle

  1. My heart goes out to you. The Psalm reading for today promises that the Lord will not abandon those who belong to Him. My prayers go up for all of you!

  2. Glad to know how to specifically pray. And glad that it’s working out to go there this week. Love to you!

  3. Oh my, Trish. Tears fill me as I read this bittersweet post. I pray with you for a peaceful passing for your dear dad, for safe travel for your big (little!) kids, for event-free time for Rudy and Rolf in your absence – and, of course, for your sweet heart which has had to carry so very much in these months since you discovered both Rudy’s problems and your dad’s. I have found that ancient prayer of the church combined with concentration on my own breath in and out to be so centering/calming/comforting during the turmoil of our own lives these last few weeks: “Lord Jesus Christ (breath in), Son of God (breath out), have mercy on me (breath in), a sinner.” (breath out). You can shorten it to, “Lord, have mercy,” too. Helps when the heebie jeebies disrupt sleep, when you fly on a difficult journey, when you need to be reminded of the Lord’s nearness – nearer than the very air you breathe. Much love from all who care about you goes with you, dear friend. May God’s love enfold you every minute of these days of watching and waiting. It’s a sacred errand you take – and sing your heart out from here – your dad hears it, believe me. Love and prayers!

  4. Hoping for a pain free relief from the burdens of this world for your father. My father had hospice and it was a great relief for our family to have their assistance with all the tiny details that we were so stressed we could not think of or deal with!

  5. Trish,

    Just wanted to send you a Big Hug and let you know we will be praying much for you and your family during these days! Praise the Lord for the comfort that He is coming again and that we will all go to see our loved ones gone or going on before us! Love you my friend, Jeannine & Tom

  6. Trish, looking forward to your arrival tomorrow with all the peace and joy that accompanies you wherever you go! Love you!!

  7. You don’t know me but I’ve been following Rudy’s story since before he was born. I’m a friend of Marlin and Grace and worked as a nurse at the camp in PV.
    Dear sister, I know what you are going through with your dad. I spent all of last week helping my aunt with her husband’s hospice care. He too had brain cancer. Cancer is an ugly, mean monster, as you well know. But in the end, if a cure is not to be found, our loved one’s still WIN! They always win! The cancer is destroyed and our loved one’s live on in heaven awaiting our reunion. Cancer can’t do that. The cancer may rob your father of his earthly body, but it can’t keep a good man down!

    Blessings and prayers to you and your family during this difficult time.

  8. Praying for your travels and for your dad peace and comfort. Had the opportunity to meet and hug your dad and mom earlier this summer when they were at Covenant Chapel with Steve and Michelle.

  9. Trish, I’m so glad that the Lord gave you His words to hang onto, and that’s all we have as we hang on with our very lives…I’m glad that the Lord has freed you up to be there with your father at this sacred time. Godspeed xxoo

  10. Dear Sweet Trish-am praying! Knowing that God will give you the peace and strength you need to get through the difficult days ahead.

  11. I wish I was there to give you a hug.You can count on me praying for you and for your family..Love you…XXOO

  12. God is watching carefully over your Dad, Trish. The angels will carry him to paradise where he’ll be whole and completely happy! Praying for each of you during this hard time!! God bless, safe trip, love Jane and Joe

  13. Trish, I’m so sorry, I’ll be praying all goes well with the kids while you’re gone…and that everyone is okay.
    Prayers be with your daddy too.

    Much love,

  14. Praying for your sweet dad, and the whole family in this trying time. Safe travels and peace of mind for you and Rolf while you are away. Blesing on your sweet kids. Our Love, Prayers, hugs and kisses as always.

  15. So sad to find this post as I did my regular “check-in” on Rudy tonight. My mouth mutters, “Cancer sucks!” (What is it your family says…Vacuums?) My heart sinks in sadness for you and your whole family. And, my soul holds tightly with you to the promise of an eternity wonderous beyond anything we can imagine and grace abundant for seasons of loss. I’ll carry you all extra-close this weekend, remembering you often to Jesus. –Michelle

  16. Trish,
    I have been watching Rudy’s journey for awhile. You are in our family’s prayers. I know what it is like to have to choose between a little halfheart and a family member dying from cancer out of state. My brother lost his battle with cancer 4 days after our son’s Glenn. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with you during this time.

  17. Trish, I am praying for God’s peace and comfort for you and your family. May Jesus hold you in His arms.

  18. Dead Trish,
    I’m sorry to read about your Dad’s Condition. Wish we Could Be a Little closer to help out a Bit and spend Some Time with your Great Kids! We’ll Be thinking a Lot about you & your Family!
    Take Care (and please don’t forget your own “Needs”),
    Yours Astrid & Wolfgang

    P.S.: Rudy Looks Great 🙂

  19. oh Trish! Our prayers are with you! It’s so hard to lose a loved one. Praying for peace and God’s best timing for everything going on. Love you!

  20. How blessed we are to have had our parents this long. God has been good to us and now He wants your father home to be with Him. How much it hurts your heart, you are strong and will live in the fantastic memories you have of him with your entire family. Rudy will grow and know endless stories of a wonderful grandpa he was able to meet and hug and laugh with. I wish you peace and blessings during this trying time for the entire family. How wonderful the big kids can make happy new memories in Alabama and Rudy can have quality daddy-time at home.

  21. Trish,
    My heart goes out to you as you work to get all the pieces to fall into place so you can go to be with your dad. Already God’s hand is evident in all the ways things have come together for you so you can make this trip. Prayers are with you and your children as they are separated from Mom and Dad, and I pray that God will fill each one of the Geyling family with peace during this time. Your dad is ready and not afraid. Imagine his joy waking up in the arms of our Lord!!! Wow!

  22. Oh Trish, I send you all my love, hugs and so many prayers to you and your family during this time. Wow, it really has been a week of difficulty as you know, Kathy Christopher’s husband passed away too. We had a touching memorial at C. A. yesterday with tears, laughter and just remembering Bud. I have to say that God has sustained you in ways that I cannot even imagine. Your dad got to meet adorable Rudy and experience God’s amazing miracle. For now, again, I just lift you up in prayers and many hugs.

    Love you!!!

  23. Dear Trish. My heart is with you as you were able to be at your father’s side as he entered into heaven. I am so happy you were able to be with him. Many prayers and hugs to you and your family. With love, Lorette

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