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Updated: Feb 15, 2021

Kayley Hospital Watch

Mothers It wasn't supposed to be this way. No, no, no -she was supposed to be the one sleeping on a real bed as opposed to a hospital sofa. Yet I am currently laying on a king size mattress that's softer than the down on a goose while only 2.9 miles down the road, Missy lays on blue vinyl cushions. This pretend hospital hammock is barely wide enough for a cat- let alone a queen.

Earlier today Kayley was moved out of ICU into a regular room; as if there were such a thing. Since my daughter is making some improvements I pushed for Missy to commit the unpardonable sin tonight. I have recommended this transgression several times over the last 15 days. However it was deemed so grievous, so unthinkable, so out of the question that the mere mention of it brought immediate resistance.

When Kayley was first admitted I took on the responsibilities of homework and taxi service for our youngest son Graham. Every moment in between, I spent with Kayley and Missy. During the day Kayley had both of us but the nights... the long merciless nights... she had only Missy.

I knew Kayley wanted... needed...her mother in a different way than me. I understand this. Missy has always been the one the kids ran to first when pain or boo-boos showed their ugly face. A very small part of it is attributed to the fact that I'm always on the road but the major reason is because she's a mother and I am not.

Don't get me wrong; Kayley and I are extremely close. When she was a child she always wanted to be wherever I was and go wherever I went. Matter of fact, if I was going to leave the house just to get gasoline or run a quick errand I would have to have Missy distract her so I could sneak out the door. However, at times like these I am acutely aware that Missy (moms) has the innate ability to bring comfort and assurance in doses that I (fathers) cannot dispense.

So earlier today I started my pitch, "Babe listen, you've been carrying the torch for over two weeks and it's time for you to get some much needed rest. Why don't you let me sleep on the sofa and you go stay at the (borrowed) condo?". In my complete amazement both she and Kayley agreed it was time.

Around 11 o'clock I asked her what time she would be leaving. She raised her eyebrows, squinted her eyes, tilted her head and began backtracking like a crab, "Kayley is still not feeling good. She has nausea and a pounding headache so I think I will stay".

I knew there was no sense in debating. I would have a better chance pole vaulting the moon than convincing her to leave.

I met her when I was 23. It was a hot sultry day and I was working part time for my dad in his convenience store when my youngest sister came walking in with her college classmate. When she introduced us, I told Missy I liked her dimple (see picture). I wasn't flirting, I was already dating someone-I just thought it was cute. My comment brought a blush I found even more attractive than the dimple.

A short time later my sister brought her to hear me preach; that night she met Christ. The girl I already thought was very pretty -I then viewed as a total knockout. Within a few short weeks we both broke up with who we had been dating and started seeing only each other. Two decades later she still fascinates and intrigues me. In a word, she MOVES me... physically...spiritually...emotionally... She is not only a great wife but she is a incredible Mother with powers... magic... uncanny intuition and supernatural compassion.

In these last 15 days I have grown to love, respect and cherish her in ways otherwise impossible had we not have encountered this storm.

For now, it's one of the few benefits I can currently see in the wake of this brutal disease that has ravaged my daughter.

Kayley survived not only because of God she also survived because of her mother.

Missy has lost over 10 pounds during this savage ordeal but she never lost her faith. She has gone 15 days providing rest to Kayley but none to herself. Every moment of every 15 days she has been a giver and never a taker. When my faith was failing hers never faltered. When I cringed she consoled. When I was doubtful she was determined.

Missy is our family's greatest gift.

We don't know when Kayley will get out of the hospital but we do know that Kayley has a long road ahead. There will be physical rehab, doctors visits, return trips to Dallas etc., and Missy will carry much of the load because I'll be on the road. But Kayley will grow strong because God gave her a strong, resilient, compassionate, wise, and Godly mother.

Mothers- the greatest gift on earth!

PS Once we have all recovered I've promised to take them to the beach. I don't really like the beach at all (the heat,the sweat and sand in places it doesn't belong) and would rather be in the mountains. However, I can't wait to go. I'm counting the days when I will see them in a far away place away from hospitals and away from pain.

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