I’m out of words. I can no longer express the sadness that has found our family this month. Sunday evening my father-in-law passed away. He has been battling prostate cancer for six years. It finally spread beyond his lymph nodes and his bones. The tumors spread to his liver and also surrounded his lungs.
I really have no words…
We are finding comfort in all the small things.
We spent all day Sunday with him at the hospital. We watched him breathe for hours until his breath became more shallow and more spaced out. He passed away 45 minutes after his sister finally arrived at the hospital. He passed away with his wife and his sister by his side.
My father-in-law is a sailor. He grew up on a sailboat, and his eyes glisten when he talks about his Catalina. High tide was an important time in the day for him because it allowed him to get home. When the tide was high, he could sail up river to his house. (When it was low, he’d get stuck drinking margaritas waiting for the tide to change.) John passed away at the peak of high tide. His final breath was the moment the waters were the highest. High tide took him home.
My father-in-law loved Jimmy Buffett. Before he passed, my mother-in-law mentioned that she didn’t even know what his favorite song was by Jimmy Buffett. He woke up, opened his eyes, and said Come Monday. He passed away on Sunday. Come Monday, everything was alright for him.
In one of his last conversations with my mother-in-law, he told her he already got his miracle. He was diagnosed six years ago. In his six year battle, he watch Christian and I fall in love. He attended our wedding. He welcomed all four of his grandchildren into this world. He got to see his sons become husbands and fathers. He squeezed an extra six years out of life.
When my aunt passed away, everything felt raw and exposed. Now that my father-in-law has passed away, everything feels numb. I thinking being here and going through the journey with him has made it easier to understand. I think watching him transition through the final stages of his life makes knowing he has found peace more comforting to everyone in our household.
Tomorrow is John’s funeral. The days after will be the hardest. Planning has given everyone a purpose. Living life without him hasn’t happened yet. Family dinners, holidays, Cole’s school events, Chet’s milestones, it is in these moments when I think the sadness will hit me the hardest. I still expect to hear I’ll sit next to what’s her name as we sit down to eat (that’s what he has always called me). I still expect him to be home 3 miles down the road.