My Uncle And His Courageous Battle With Cancer
You left us a year ago this past December 11th - before Christmas, your favorite holiday. I remember it all so clearly. The phone call that ripped my heart out with one word - CANCER and then the silence. As the phone slipped from my hand, the tears began to fall and fall and fall, like autumn leaves.
How could this be my mind screamed. My uncle - only two years older than me - 58 years old! No way, impossible. There must be something the doctors could do. Okay, I just knew that chemo would solve the problem. You, on the other hand, knew otherwise.
You were so amazing to me during that time. You endured so much agonizing pain and yet your sense of humor never failed you until the end when you slipped into a coma. Razzing me as usual and I you. You even joked with me about not coming to your funeral if I did not want to. I fired back at you "oh yes I will, and I am going to air all of your dirty laundry!" We had so much fun reflecting over the times that we had spent together in the past and the crazy things we had done.
But time was so short from July until December. You declined so rapidly that I could only see you for very short periods of time. I wanted to sit for hours and hold your hand but you were just too sick.. I never wanted to leave your side
Sunday, December 9th, I came for a short visit. I sat in my car and cried for awhile before I could compose myself enough to come in and see you. I knew the end was near and when I looked into your eyes, I saw death. You were so weak you coudn't even get off the sofa by yourself, yet the jokes never stopped nor your smile. I knew that I would never see you alive again.
Tuesday, December 11th, my mom phoned. She had to call the Rescue Squad to take you to the hospital. You were unresponsive. I could hardly function and I wanted to get to you but certain obligations kept me away.. But, I made it Tuesday night at 6:00pm. You did not know I was there. Your preacher and best friend came by. We were there - Mom, myself, Kenny, and Glen. Whispering softly, we watched your breathing gradually grow more shallow by the hour. At 9:00pm, so peacefully you slipped away.
Some may think I am a liar and others may think as they say she's "a little touched", but four others in that room saw what I saw. There was a smile and a glow on your face. I stood looking at you for the longest time. We were all gathered 'round your bed in silence for we new the Master had just taken you by the hand and led you home. Your expression and that moment is forever engraved in my mind.
Before I left that hospital room, I pinched you on the cheek and said "David, you made it just in time for CHRISTmas." Indeed, I knew you were with THE REASON FOR THE SEASON!
Well, David, I did speak at your funeral - something I have never done before because I can't speak in front of a crowd. But, you would have been proud.I pulled it off like a pro and even recited a poem that I wrote just for you:
We all like to be home for Christmas.
There's no sweeter place to be,
Where families gather together,
To give gifts and share holiday glee.
Some gifts are greater than others,
Some more precious than gold,
But your gift of Heaven for Christmas,
Is greater than any king could behold.
Poem is copyrighted and owned by me.
P.S. We played your favorite song by Vince Gill - Go Rest High On That Mountain. The perfect song for that was the story of your life.
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