It was the birthday cake that did it.
A scrumptious chocolate cookie ice cream cake---just the treat for my grandpa's 98th birthday. Oh, it was tasty, but the very next day Grandpa started developing a serious case of the flu. You know, the real flu, the one that carries off weak, young, and old every year.
He coughed. He wheezed. Finally, he stopped coughing and that was worse because now his lungs were filling with fluid.
His lips turned blue from the lack of oxygen and his lungs squeaked and rattled with each breath.
Every movement was an effort, so mostly he just lay on his bed looking unconscious.
Mornings were exciting. Is Grandpa still alive this morning? Oh, good. Still breathing.
We prepared for the end, running through the check list of things to do "when". We thought about placing him back in hospice because clearly this was it. I mean, we can be excused for thinking that. He has----what is it?-----two fatal conditions plus a stroke already and has survived years longer than the doctors predicted.
And then, after several days of dying, Grandpa seemed to stabilize. He wasn't getting better, but he wasn't getting noticeably worse. Still, he was at such a low ebb that the end must be near. Only it wasn't, because after a day or two of a Marianas Trench of a plateau, Grandpa started to get better.
Grandpa always felt if a job was worth doing it was worth doing right, so when he got sick, well, he GOT SICK. And once he started to get better, he kept right on recovering. Now he is back to the level he was at before he got the flu, if not a little better. He's also continuing to make small improvements from his stroke in December--------the man's aging backwards!!!!!!!
So today I made Grandpa a special shirt, one to celebrate his astonishing achievements. Clearly, he is determined to be one of the 144,000 and be translated when Jesus returns-----who are we to stand in the way of his dream?