Wow! I have probably lost some followers due to my cocoon experience. I have really had to just allow myself to be wrapped up safely with God. I am at this very peculiar stage where I need to write another book. I just have to write another book! It is filling every fiber of my being that God has words He wants me to share. Yet the enlightenment of which words or what the subject will be has not been revealed and as usual I am impatient to learn What God’s Will is for my life.
Do you ever get like that? Knowing a major Spiritual shift is about to happen and not knowing the direction it is supposed to take you in next? So I have been in this cocoon where I have wrapped myself up in Christian music, praise and worship songs mostly, but special hymns while I am at church. At my church we only lift our voices to God we have no musical instruments, That was a hard thing to get used to when I first began going to The Church Of Christ. I was raised Southern Baptist. But in this new church I did not know the songs that they were singing or how to follow the music and keep on key. So God told me be still and listen. Oh, did He have such an awesome gift to give me. I listened as the church sang hymns that were familiar to them. It sounded like Angels singing. Not because everyone’s voice had that perfect pitch and everyone was exactly on key but because you could hear pure adoration in their voices. There is one lady that could be an opera singer her voice is so strong and true. The hymns they sing have parts where the women sing and parts where the men sing and the wave of sweet female voices being joined with strong thunderous male voices, oh dear me I cannot describe how close to heaven I feel when my church begins to sing. They are not singing to show off their voices they are singing directly to God from their Hearts! I can follow the songs now and my voice is lifted among my fellow Christians in Pure Adoration for Father God, His son Jesus Christ, and The Holy Spirit! That is what I have cocooned myself in, music, praising God, thanking God, and worshiping God! Outside of the church I do listen to Today’s Christian music and it lifts me and fills me with the Spirit. I listen to a nationwide Christian music station that has different stations in different cities and states. I am lucky I have a station near me and the signal is excellent in my car. I also stream them live from their website while I am on the internet. (A good tip if you want to stay in an atmosphere of Christian Love and Safety while on the internet stream Christian music while you are socializing on social media.)
So I guess I have been in a stage of healing. It is a great stage to be in because you know at the outcome you will be transformed.
My Daddy passed away on October 8, 2011 and this time of year is extremely hard for me. He had all six of us children around him and Mama close by and somehow I was sitting on the side of the bed ending up being very close to him for some reason, that is just the position God had left open for me. And my left had was on my Daddy’s heart. I remember the Hospice Nurse said his blood pressure was 50. Just one number. And I knew he was going home to Heaven. My hand laid there on his chest and I felt him draw his last breath and two quick heartbeats and that was the end. Every year I am amazed how I still feel those sensations in my left hand.
So now you know what lead me to wrap myself in a cocoon of healing. I hope you understand that I did not mean to disappear from your lives. That was never my intention at all. I just simply had no words to share. The only words I had were songs I sang directly to My Savior. By doing that He was able to pour life back into my broken heart and I felt The Holy Spirit dwelling within me filling that hole my Daddy’s death had created. It has happened each year since his death.
Daddy was put in Hospice Care in August of 2011 and now every year around the beginning of September I start feeling the heartache stronger than usual. You see I am disabled so I did not have a job and someone needed to be with Daddy when Mama went back to work when school started in August. She was an elementary school teacher and had the summer off and spent every moment with him that she could, only leaving his side to buy groceries. But when it was time for her to go back to work I volunteered to come help take care of Daddy. My Daddy was a man of few words. When he spoke, we stopped to listen because once he became a Christian, then God used the experiences of his colorful past to give him wisdom to help us stay close to God in everyday life. So every morning me, Mama, and Daddy would get a cup of coffee and watch the sunrise. There was no talking. It was like we all tuned in to God’s welcoming of the day.
My Daddy had cancer and a tumor was growing rapidly inside his stomach. At first he could hold down light meals but that did not last long. He was battling cancer for the third time and this time it was an aggressive stomach cancer. At First he was only able to handle soup and liquid nutritional shakes, and of course his coffee , but the very last thing he was able to take in was popsicles. Banana popsicles .
Each visit Hospice would add a new medicine or change the dosage of one or more medications trying to keep him comfortable. Four days out of all the time I spent with him stand out in my mind. One day when Mama came home from work we all had our coffee and my Daddy. as spry as a spring chicken, jumped up and playfully attacked Mama on the couch. It was such a happy moment and we were all laughing. I had my phone and used the camera and caught that wonderful moment for eternity. That was his last burst of energy. It was the last time Mama and Daddy communicated verbally. But I had caught that precious memory in a picture. Then my memory goes to the day the oxygen was delivered and he was hooked up to the machine which took away a lot of his mobility. That was a hard day for him. He was supposed to drink a nutritional shake and his beloved coffee, cream and sugar just like he liked it one heaping spoon of creamer and two flat spoons of sugar. But the cups that would have given him nutrition were placed beside him with hope, but he no longer could even drink those two favorites , but having the cups there beside him were just as a sign of hope and normalcy. He had drank coffee all the way up till bedtime for as long as I can remember. It was just what he drank other than ice cold water. The other important day I remember is when he could not hold anything down anymore. We were in the living room in the recliners and he always had the television on the western channel, mostly he slept, but would wake up and ask for coffee by habit and I would fix his cup and put it in his reach even though he was unable to drink anything anymore. He had dozed off and there was a was western on that I had watched many times growing up. I knew Dodge City very well. As my Daddy was sleeping everything but the television was quiet and a few hours later he woke up and immediately asked where’s John? I knew immediately in my heart he meant his brother, but I asked if he meant John my cousin and he said no my brother. He quickly said “He was just here and I was talking to him where did he go?” (My Uncle John died under tragic circumstances when I was little.) I know his brother came to him and was preparing him for the coming journey and I just frankly said “He is waiting for you in Heaven, Daddy”. The last day that was memorable he told me about his prognosis. He said do you know how I am going to die? Knowing to honor him by accepting the fact that he knew he was dying I said “No Daddy.” He said “I asked the Hospice nurse how this tumor would kill me and the nurse told me I will die of starvation. At the time I could not comprehend that thought, but just a few days later he was placed in the middle of his bed right where he had asked to be placed when he could not function any more. We called my eldest sister who lived 8 hours away and she raced down from the western part of Florida’s panhandle to where we were at in south central Florida. He had been sleeping since he was laid in the bed but when my sister finally arrived she spoke softly to him saying “Daddy I’m here.” And he woke up out of the fog of all the pain medicine and said ‘Oh I am so glad to see you!” and gave her a hug and the rest of us children waited to get a hug, as he hugged us he told us all “I love you” and then my Daddy went to sleep and never woke again. He lasted about 4 days in that sleeping state.
Then came the day that at 5:00 pm on October 8, 2011 where we were all surrounding him all having at least one hand touching him. And I felt his last breath and the last two quick beats of his heart. We called the funeral home and were waiting for the attendants when a storm blew in with pouring rain. As we waited we redressed my Daddy so he would be dressed in fresh clothing. Me, my Mama, and my younger sister went to do the task and while changing his clothes I saw the reality of the death he had suffered. He was emaciated. Just skin and bones. This was a giant man. He stood 6’2″ and weighed close to 250 pounds when he was diagnosed with the first cancer. Now we were lifting him as easily as if he was a small child.
That’s when the realization that though I could not have changed the circumstances, I had watched my Daddy slowly starve to death. Horror filled me. I was no longer able to be strong but I could not cry. I went to my room and got in the bed and under the covers and fought the voices in my mind that were accusing me of allowing him to die such a horrible death.
It has been three years but I still cannot reconcile the way he died. So this year during my disappearance from writing I cocooned my self in the majesty and healing of music that praised, worshiped, and gave adoration to God. And I heard a new song by Carrie Underwood called “Something in the Water” And I remember the complete transformation my Daddy went through when he asked Jesus for the gift of Salvation and was Baptized. Yes, when my giant Daddy went under the water He came up changed. There was definitely “something in the water” and that giant of a man and the vision of him coming back up from under the water soothes my soul. Because I know he will come visit me at the end of my time on Earth and prepare me to go home just like his brother John did for him.