A Beautiful Family Day

Yesterday was a beautiful family day that we were able to spend together…and a sad, melancholy day…all at the same time.

My mom received a phone call on Friday morning that her sister-in-law (my Aunt Donice) hadn’t been feeling well and so she had gone to the hospital for a CAT scan on Thursday. When my aunt got back home that evening she started feeling worse so my Uncle Don called an ambulance for her to be taken to the hospital. By the time my mom received her phone call, my aunt had already been taken into emergency surgery and the family had been told that if the surgery didn’t fix the problems they were seeing, she would be given a 5% chance of survival. My mom’s extended family all live in Illinois and my mom is recovering from the knee surgery she just had on Tuesday, so she and my dad decided to sit tight and wait to hear further news.

We were all shocked to hear that after the doctors had checked my aunt during surgery they felt like there was nothing further they could do to help her and she was given almost no chance of surviving for any longer than the next day. During the surgery, they discovered that she had an aneurysm in her bowel and the dye from the CAT scan had caused the aneurysm to burst which in turn had completely destroyed her intestinal tract.

My aunt passed away yesterday morning. Even though we live far away from our aunts and uncles, I have a special place in my heart for each of them and my heart is hurting as I think of my uncle trying to make his way through this horrible moment in his life. My Aunt Donice and Uncle Don were survivors already…dealing with the pain of losing their youngest daughter when she was just a teenager and was struck down by a drunk driver. And then dealing with the pain of losing their oldest daughter to cancer not very long after they had just reconciled with her.

If any of you would feel called upon to send a prayer out for my Uncle Don, my mom and their two sisters (my Aunt Cindy and my Aunt Helen)…I know the peace that can come when others are lifting up my name in prayer. With my human understanding, it is hard for me to fathom how my uncle will be able to deal with this loss and continue on in this life….but I know that the peace that God gives does surpass our human understanding.

At the same time we received all of this sad news, we were also in the midst of celebrating a visit with my brother and his wife who had just driven in from New Jersey to spend a long weekend with our entire family. Big surprise here…we spent our day at the lake. In the midst of the sadness, it was wonderful to be surrounded by loved ones and to be able to enjoy our time together.

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After spending our day together with our entire family…Sweatiepy, the kids and I arrived home to this beautiful sight:
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“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Matt. 11:28