Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Freaky Friday

Last Friday was a weird one. All over the emotional Richter scale. I cut the grass for about an hour and a half, then I found out that my dad went into the hospital early in the morning because of some bleeding (trying to avoid TMI here). We had planned a "family day outing" because it was a free afternoon for Mark before football camps hit. My sister told me that Dad was resting and couldn't take visitors, we decided to go on our outing as planned. So we traveled over to Argyle to a little railroad museum for a few hours. It was a whimsical, joyful place to be--I'll save it for another blog post!

Okay, we knew there were some storms forecasted for the afternoon, but we had no idea they were going to be so severe, sporadic, and recurring. On our drive home around 5:00 p.m., they hit. Just west of Darlington we were forced to pull over because the hail came fast and HARD. The kids were pretty good about it, but Mark was thinking, "Oh great - we just bought this Suburban and now we're getting hail damage." There was nothing we could do.

After a few minutes, the hail let up, and we proceeded to make our way home. We couldn't see any hail damage on the vehicle, thank God, but acres upon acres of corn were shredded to pieces as we drove through Lafayette County. We received a phone call from Mark's brother Joey--he had driven 14 hours back from Georgia for the weekend!--so we made our way over to my father-in-law's farm to visit a bit. After watching the weather forecast for more storms, we quickly decided that it wasn't the best time to "visit"--it was time to get home before the next one hit! So we raced through the pouring rain, back into the Burb, and headed west through Platteville to get home.

Bad idea. There were power lines down in some city streets, and the curbs were full of gushing water. Flash flood time! Having a good memory of being stranded last year, Mark knew that our road would most likely be impassable, so we drove over to my sister's house to wait out the storm. The kids loved it, running around their large basement with their six cousins (most the same age as our kids). My sister Julie and I talked about my Dad's health situation. The cause of the bleeding was not known yet, and there was some kidney failure. Dad was very weak and resting, and we called over to find out that he and Mom had been herded into his hospital room bathroom (tubes, machines and all) to ride out the brunt of the storm. Dad is 79, a lifelong farmer, and NOT a fan of the medical profession (whom he has called "The Skin Factory" in reference to the exorbitant costs of health care). Can you imagine how happy he was to be left in the bathroom in his condition, forgotten about until Mom finally peeked her head into the hall 30 minutes later to ask, "Can we come out now??" Ah, it makes me laugh actually. Sorry Daddy!

Okay, back to waiting out the storm at my sister and brother-in-law's house. Two hours passed, and I called one of our neighbors to see what the road conditions were. When we learned that the road was fine, we headed home around 8:00 p.m. This is what we saw upon our arrival home:

Here's a better shot, the next morning:

It had to be the GOOD apple tree. Not the half-dead one standing right next to it. >WAHH!!!<
Oh well. At least the wind damage was limited to two tree casualties and a ton of debris. Nobody was hurt; the animals were fine, and there were no power lines taken out. It was a lot worse in other places.
The kids made us proud. They got to work right away, gathering up branches and cleaning the yard. They kept saying things like, "The sky looks so beautiful right now" and "At least we are all safe." Amen to that!

The next day was a beautiful day. We worked in the yard from sun-up to 4:00 p.m. The chainsaw blade broke, so we didn't get the big tree cleaned up, but the whole yard was raked and cleaned. Given that our yard is about five acres, you can maybe appreciate that it was a tad bit of work. But we had motivation because we were hosting our Sunday School family cook-out that evening at 4:30!!

Heck, Uncle Joey even came to help with the clean-up. All the way from Georgia, right Joe?

The best part of the day was learning that my dad has a stomach ulcer (a small one which is treatable) and his kidneys were stabilizing. He still has lots of other issues including his emphysema, asthma, and high blood pressure, but he has a new doctor who is more vigilant, thorough and progressive with his health care--and for that, my family is very grateful.
And the cook-out was pretty fun, too!

Because of the LORD's great love we are not consumed,
for his compassions never fail.
They are new every morning;
great is your faithfulness.--Lamentations 3:22-23


Blogger Astrid said...


I can't believe that tree is gone! We got super duper lucky...not a single branch or tree fell. I'm very thankful for that!

I'm sorry to hear what your Dad has gone through. I certainly prefer staying out of the hospital!

Glad that you're all okay. It was a weird day to say the least.

July 28, 2009 at 7:00 AM  

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