That’s my dad in the wheelchair on the day he was released from the hospital a few days ago.
He was the glue that held our family together but on August 20th everything changed for all of us.
My dad went in for a “routine” test, which discovered a birth defect in his heart and he came out with 2 huge scars as a result of open heart, double bypass surgery (he is only 48 years young!)
Prior to this life changing event, my dad took care of his family. You see, my mom and brother are both disabled and my dad did everything he could for them, including take them to work, school and appointments, since neither of them can drive.
Now my mom has taken an unpaid leave of absence from work so she can help care for my brother and our home/farm. Plus, I am going back to school now, for the last year of my program at Fanshawe.
My dad has applied for short term disability from work and he is anxiously waiting to hear back. I know he is worried because even if approved, he will only get a portion of his usual pay.
To add to the whole situation my dad is staying with his retired parents, over 5 hours away, for his recovery, because he can get better care there than at home.
Despite the many programs available, with various home nursing and rehabilitation services, there are many things that are not fully covered due to limitations in his benefits plan. Also, since he won’t be able to drive for 2-3 months and isn’t close to any of his doctors, the travel expenses involved in getting him to all of his upcoming appointments will all be out of pocket.
The fact is we are very thankful that he is alive and blessed that he received such good care. One of the bright lights in this experience is the symbolism behind his surgery. Immediately after he was moved to the ICU, the surgeon sent us an email, with a diagram of the bypass. It forms the letter “L”.
So here is the question, what does “L” signify?
L for Life
L for Love
L for Lisa (mom’s name)
Or maybe the surgeon signed his work, since his last name starts with L. No matter what you believe, I think L represents another option: all of the above.
This is really hard for my dad since he is usually the one who helps and cares for others, but all of a sudden, he is the one who needs the support.
He is too proud to ask for help. But I’m asking. Please help my dad and my family during this difficult time.
Please help him get home to his family, both human and furry.
(love you dad)
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