Just keep it real with me

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, June 8, 2016

When one of your parents suffers from a chronic illness, every slight fever spike and ache or pain must be taken seriously, which also equates to numerous trips to the emergency room.
Such is the case with my father, who suffers from kidney failure.
Monday morning as I was getting ready for work, he called and told me he was experiencing chest pains and needed to go to the hospital. Once we got there, the wait was minimal and my parents and I sat down with one of the nurses, who turned out to be the first of many staff members who made our experience more bearable.
When the nurse heard my dad recite his medical history, he said, “Boy, is this what I have to look forward to in a few years?”
We all laughed and in that moment felt at ease, even through we still didn’t know what was causing my dad’s pain.
I don’t know about anyone else, but I certainly appreciate a good sense of sarcastic humor versus some over-the-top joyful person telling my family, “Everything’s going to be all right,” in some singsong voice.
I can’t fault them for their positivity, but in reality, they don’t know if everything will be all right.
Every nurse and doctor we encountered yesterday not only took my dad’s condition seriously, but also interjected their own brand of humor into the situation. Never once did I hear someone chirping in my ear their “view into the future.”
While I still hope and pray for the best in situations, I prefer to ground my thoughts in some sort of reality, preparing myself for the worst while still hoping for the best outcome.
At the moment I’m writing this, doctors are still unsure about what is causing my dad’s pain. They admitted him to the hospital for further testing. I was relieved to hear this because that means they won’t give up on treating him.
Some days I long for the naiveté of my youth, before the realities of being an adult hit. But for the most part, I don’t.
My trials and tribulations have made me what I am. I was 23-years-old when the world I knew was literally washed away. I grew up fast and learned to appreciate the important things in this life.
I may not be the most chipper bird on the wire, but it doesn’t mean I don’t care or am unhappy all the time. I am determined, hardworking, sarcastic and brave. I love my family and friends fiercely and would do anything for them.
“Even a happy life cannot be without a measure of darkness, and the word happy would lose its meaning if it were not balanced by sadness. It is far better to take things as they come along with patience and equanimity.” –– Carl Jung.

Sign up for our daily email newsletter

Get the latest news sent to your inbox