It’s been forever & a day that I’ve posted. The past month has been a blur. I’m still in North Carolina, but after some serious ups & downs my dad is doing fantastic! Those of you reading along in our Newsletter know that he had a minor stroke almost three weeks ago. While that was one of the scariest days of my life, it got him the care he needed to recover. Now we are finished with the antibiotic infusions and just doing follow-up care. Every week is getting easier and the time is drawing near that I return home.

I am so going to miss being here. My sister, me, my parents, have gotten into a little routine caring for each other and making space for four, when before there were only two. It has all gone surprisingly well and smooth. I think the big scare my dad gave us all has a lot to do with it. The little things we’d normally quibble over are no longer important. Instead there is a lot of love and gentleness. It’s peaceful. I think we are all recovering, along with my dad. Not just from my dad’s illness, but this entire past year of fear and pandemic.

My dad was seriously ill for two months. He spent a great deal of that time in bed. He has lost muscle tone and energy. Besides recovering from the stroke, he also has to recover from all that downtime. He started very slowly, very carefully, just walking laps around the living room and kitchen. In the hospital post-stroke, he had physical therapists push him a little and getting him to do a little more.

Now we are taking daily trips to the local lake and walking his favorite paths. He can’t quite walk around the lake, not yet, but he’s up to a mile a day. He walks to his favorite bench, about half a mile, and rests while Manon (my sister) & I walk the full length of the lake. We meet up with him, and walk that last half mile back to the car. These last two times he’s even driven! He’s getting back to normal.

Manon leaves next week. It’s time for her to go back to her dogs, cats, chickens, ducks and goats! And husband. My guess is he’s very ready to get some help with their little menagerie. That means we have a week to just enjoy our parents and each other. One last week of bonding and celebrating the little wins. One last week of laughs, hugs and happiness. We are in a joyful mood. Our big scare is ending on a happy note and I couldn’t be more grateful.

My dad. Sitting on his favorite bench, at his favorite lake.

Early mornings the water is calm, the clouds reflect beautifully.

Besides turtles there is so much wildlife, including geese!

Can you find the turtle?

There are a bazillion turtles. My dad loves turtles. I never knew.

On the other side of the lake is either a playground, a golf course, or a swamp. This is the swamp.