There are moments from this past weekend that are etched on my heart. My grandmother's words, "Bubba, is a very sick man," as we sat down to a quick lunch when I arrived on Friday. Standing at my grandfather's side as tubes and wires snaked from his still, sedated body to monitors and machines. The moments of sad eyes filled with unshed tears in the midst of subdued conversation. A few of us sitting in the hospital chapel to pray for strength, wisdom, and healing. The hope in my uncle's voice as he shared the doctor's finding an infection to treat....the list goes on... to a quiet moment before saying goodbye on Monday night, when I leaned in close and told my grandfather that he is the strongest man I know, and that I wasn't talking about his bones....but his heart. I told him I know that he doesn't feel good, that he doesn't feel like himself, but that we love him, and want the best for him. And most importantly I said, "You are the best grandpa. I love you." When I went to leave, I leaned in again and said, "I love you and I'll see you in July." I kissed him on the nose and left with a few unavoidable tears. I wish I knew how to sum up the past few days...even with hours of driving to think and process.... how does one unpack the heart's journey? How do I explain how sweet my grandfather's hoarse, raspy voice sounded after three days of complete silence? There are no words for how hard, how special, how painful, and how beautiful the past week has been.
And so for now, I choose to be thankful. Thankful that I was able to go home and be present in the moment. Thankful that there are compassionate nurses and wise doctors and that healing and medicine exist. Thankful for the prayers of several communities that lifted up the man I call Bubba. Thankful for the bond and love of a family that will sit in a waiting room and push ICU limits on visitors to the max. Thankful that my grandfather is slowly recovering and improving and is receiving great care. And thankful for a God who is moving in ways we cannot even see... Thankful.