If the Spirit Moves You

Let me groove you.

It’s been well over a month since my last posting. I’ve thought many times over the last several weeks, I need to make a rigtales post about this….

To summarize all those stories, I’ve been busy. As hell.  I’ve been taking exams on a weekly basis. I study daily until I can’t see straight anymore. I’ve played and practiced my violin and am supposed to play a song at an open mic night with Lynn tomorrow. I practice daily. I spend time with my new friends and classmates, learning about their expertise and exchanging stories and laughter. I’m dressing up in a lab coat and running around with children trying to excite them about science. I do this several times a week and couldn’t be happier with all that I’m learning through school, work, friends and hobbies.

Just before Halloween weekend, I found out my father would need by-pass surgery. After attempting to postpone, he opted to have the surgery done immediately. I went home to Texas. I RAN home to Texas. Within 10 minutes of hearing the news, I had cancelled all my work and took off 8 days from school, missing an exam to go home. I booked a flight and was back in mom and dad’s house within hours, packing a single giant purse. While supporting my dad and mom during this stressful and life altering procedure was clearly a priority, the truth is- I went for purely selfish reasons. After the operation went flawlessly and dad was up and walking around in recovery, I admitted to him and myself…

“I was afraid I’d never see you again”

Thinking about this now is a little shocking. I believe in science and modern medicine. I know open hear surgery is extremely routine in the USA and highly successful. But I felt all the feelings that week, proving once again that emotional arguments can be stronger than logical ones.

I was excited to see mom, dad and my sister. Speaking to my dad before coming home, I assured him I would take care of his pet tortoises during his hospital stay, and for that I really was excited. I love those animals.

I was overwhelmed trying to imagine how scared my father must have been. I once had heartburn, and that is the most extreme extent of any physical pain or medical condition I’ve had to endure.

I was stressed to be missing so much school and an exam, fearing I’d fall behind. These concerns were pretty much alleviated by my professors and department administrators who comforted me, “If it were my daughter, I’d want her to be there.”

Standing with my mom and sister around my dad’s hospital bed, we tried to shoulder his anxiety prior to him being taken in to the operating room. We told him funny stories. I reminded him of the time I crapped my pants as a toddler under his care when mom was out of town. We laughed. The surgeon and anesthesiologist came in to take him. We cried. I was beyond tears when I said bye to him before he was wheeled away for the surgery. Suppressing heaves, sobs and snot, I hugged my dad and laid my head on his chest.

I hope I never forget the intensity of those moments. A few hours later, there was little anxiety left. The surgery went great and dad was in recovery. Within a day he was eating and talking like normal. Within a couple days, he was up and walking around.

Again, the novelty of being home and no longer in Qatar has yet to wear off. I can’t believe I would have missed that. I’m back in Colorado and chugging along in the semester.

I study economics, learn violin, teach science, and call my parents every single day.