Trust In The Lord

My father, who will be 89 years old, next month, is still very much the active head of our family. We are blessed to have him and thankful for God’s watchful eye on him.

Some 25 years ago dad was rushed to Winnipeg for what we were told would be a double bypass surgery. When we arrived at the Health Science Hospital they found he would need more but they did not have the space for him and they wanted us to take him back to Thunder Bay until they could schedule his surgery. My family would not accept taking him home because of the risk and refused to take him out of the hospital. Fortunately, there was a meeting scheduled of all heart specialist to review the cases on site and the head of the surgical team visited the family and advised if we would agree to move father to the St. Boniface Hospital he would perform the surgery. We did this; father had 5 by passes and was told if he followed doctor’s orders he would be good for about 10 years.

25 years later father was examined by a heart specialist in Thunder Bay and we were told he would need to have an Angiogram which could lead to an Angioplasty. In June of 2011 the procedure was done and father had 1 stint put in. The doctor showed me and 2 sisters the pictures of what was done and what he felt would still need to be done. The next day father was having difficulties and the second day he had another angiogram. This seemed to help but it was 10 days later when we were able to take him home. This was a major adjustment for all because he was come home on oxygen every night. When the homecare specialist began to visit his oxygen levels were assessed and we told he would have to be on the oxygen full time and once that happened, it is rare the patient ever come off it again. Father’s attitude, although he was not comfortable with the full time oxygen, was that he has had a wonderful life and he would be OK.

There were many conversations about fathers next surgery and the three of us could not all agree to have it go ahead. Father’s appointment with the heart specialist was set for the end of August so there was time before a decision had to be made. Without all of us together this would be very difficult for the family and I felt more often that the surgery would not happen. I prayed for the best decision for my father, I lifted him to the Lord. Although I often think there is more I can do than just give it to the Lord, especially because I felt strongly that dad should have the surgery, and I believed the Doctors would not suggest this procedure if they did not feel it would benefit father; but, all three of us girls had to agree and I knew only God could help with this.

Father progressed reasonable well until one morning in August I received a call at work, Dad was experiencing chest pains and my sisters were taking him into the hospital. Dad’s doctor was away, he would have to be seen by another specialist! Doctor’s visits, tests, assessments, and no room for father, just a bed in the cardiac care emergency followed for a few days. Then the decision was taken away from us………………….Father had to have the surgery. We were anxious, another doctor, another surgery, has there been enough time for fathers body to be ready for this – Only God knew for sure. And God had taken the decision of whether father should have surgery away from us girls.

Before the surgery could be preformed dad’s doctor arrived back to hospital duty and although he could not perform the surgery he was there with the new doctor, watching, discussing, assessing father, through the full surgery process.

Today, through the Grace of God, my father is not on oxygen, is actively planning the transfer of family fun day the family presents at Chippewa Park, is actively working to find ways for our church to grow, to reach out to the community, and actively the head of our family recording his recall of life from the time he met our mother so we will have stories to pass down.

We Thank God for the skilled surgeons and support staff who cared for our father.

St. Thomas Anglican Church