Sunday, December 6, 2009

In Honor of my Father-in-Law

My FIL is a decorated Korean War Vet. He's got 2 Purple Hearts and he's earned them. He's an honorably discharged Marine. He fought for our country and I am bloody proud to call him my Dad in law... he rocks.

Now he's sick. And that bites. He just got diagnosed with terminal cancer. We're not sure how long he has, but all plans are on hold. All plans are just plans. I am ready to jump and do what needs to be done for this man whenever the call arrives.

He's too proud to ask us for help. The poor guy had a rough week just after Thanksgiving. He went to emergency, they drove him from Tyler, TX to Shreveport, LA to run bunches of tests on him. He didn't call us. His current wife didn't know to call us. We only found out today how difficult that week was for him.

He's a MARINE through and through. Is he perfect? Heck no. He's made mistakes--ask his ex's. But he's a good man. He's a strong man. He's a hero who's fought for us. He's an honorable man.

I wonder why he has to have this crappy end. Why he can't just ride his motorcycle and wear his leather jacket (he bought this in his 70s) till he turns 102? Why? That's the ticket. There is no answer to the questions we have at times like this. All we can do is honor him, love him, be available to him and live our own lives with honor.

Bill's always asking about my writing. He's the only member of my family, in-law/outlaw or by blood, who asks (outside of my own little family who knows exactly what my writing is like and more). He wants to read my books. He believes in me.

And it bites that I'm going to say goodbye to him. I hate to lose a good fellow. A good cheerleader. A good man.

The only way I know to keep him alive is to find a way to keep him riding that Honda Motorcycle in the pages of my books. Even if no one else reads them, I'll have written them.

Honor your heroes... the real ones. Honor the men who have given you life, taught you lessons about love, married you, raised children with you, loved your grandchildren, loved you. Honor your brothers, your fathers, your father in laws, your sons.

We're writing about heroes. Today my hero is Bill.

8 comments:

GhostFolk.com said...

This is a beautiful post, Christine.

As writers, we DO have the opportunity to pay homage to the heroes in our lives.

Christine said...

Thanks GhostFolk. I am very sad about this situation, but the writer in me knows she can put her motorcycle loving, former tour bus driver and all around good guy into the pages of her books. He'll be sneaking in a lot I'm sure.

Ellen B said...

Hi Christine, I held off replying to this post because I wasn't sure what to say. There really isn't anything that can be said at a time like this, except that I can tell from your post how blessed you are to have this man in your life. He sounds like a wonderful person, and I'm thinking of you all at this time.

I have no doubt he'll crop up in your writing, and the support he's given you will be obvious in every word even if you never mentioned him.

Christine said...

Hi Ellen: thanks for the comments. You are right. Nothing can be said to make it better--I use 'IT SUCKS' on this one. I spoke to him today and he's in great spirits. I was like, "I heard you had a crappy week." He was like, yeah, pretty much that in a nutshell. But who knows how these things will play out? We can't control the balance of life in the real world. Only in our books are there HEAs.

Martha W said...

I know a few like him. Those men who will go out of their way to protect those they love. Wish there were more of them... but then again, that's what makes them special.

I'll keep you all in my thoughts & prayers.

Here's to the heroes.

Christine said...

Cheers to all the heroes. We love them, we write about them, and we honor them.

Thanks all!!

Zoe said...

I've only just started reading your blog and somehow don't feel entitled to comment on something so personal. But I will ignore that feeling.

Your father-in-law sounds like an amazing man. I hope one day to be reading one of your books and seeing a glimpse of him there.
My thoughts are with both of you.

Christine said...

Zoe, I truly appreciate your words. I had a lovely chat with him tonight. I'm planning a big Christmas (early) for him when we get out to Texas. What a trooper he is...

Thanks for sharing! And hope to see you again on my Veranda of thoughts!