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My Dad is Dying.

2 Heart it! July Sanders 20
October 28, 2018
July Sanders
2 Heart it! 20

My dad is dying. He has a disease that modern medicine says there is no cure for. Of course, there are many people who have cured themselves by changing their diet and adding some spiritual practices. He wants to heal, he really does and he is open to all those changes and even adopted some. The problem is all the noise. Everyone has a different opinion and view on what to do. Those who have cured themselves are all in agreement, but everyone else is all over the place. He gets caught up in all that noise and gets confused.

I try to argue with him, reason why he should follow those who have healed (regular people) and not those who all have a different idea of what he should try (medical practitioners—traditional, natural and alternative alike). Alone with me, he is committed and in agreement. Once I leave his side however, the noise of others gets too loud.

I live across the country so being by his side to lead him down the path of healing and decrease the noise of others is not a regular option. I still call and visit often, but it’s not enough. Our last visit included my step mom angry with me for addressing my concerns and my dad crying that I wasn’t a medical practitioner—despite the fact that he previously assured me he knew my research was vast and he would not discount me for not having a degree in the medical field.

I love my dad deeply, we have a checkered past, but in adulthood we have an unbreakable bond. My mom died when I was a kid and all of my grandparents have been gone for more than ten years. I am not ready to be an orphan, but here’s the thing, I have to get ready. He is going to die. He may choose to listen to those who have healed or he may try every different idea that his numerous medical practitioners have (none have a cure attached to them), but either way he will die and likely sooner than I hoped.

I don’t have all (or even any) of the answers on how to get ready for his death, but I know this fighting and stressing over his daily choices—even those I believe are in opposition to healing—is not helping. If he wants to heal, but doesn’t want to follow in the path of those who have done so, I cannot drag him there. He has to go on his own. I can help him, but only if he wants it. I also have to accept that the pull and desires of his wife are likely stronger than my research or beliefs.


Here’s what I know:

I love him immensely and he loves me back.

I don’t want him leaving this world thinking I am mad at him.

Everyone involved wants him to heal as much as I do.

We are all doing the best we can.


These are good points to start from in every interaction I have both with him and his wife. While I may know these things, remembering them or keeping them in mind when engaging is a different story. By highlighting them, however, I can circle back to them as often as I need to. They can also help me navigate what is missing, what I need to learn.


Here’s what I know I need to learn:

To speak my peace and then move on, he will listen or he won’t and ultimately the choice is his.

Start the grieving process and get out of denial (if he recovers, that’s a bonus).

To bite my tongue when he is being stubborn or when my step mom is being irrational.

To stop biting my tongue when my pain, fear or angry is telling me to stop participating.

Accept things as they are and learn to ride the waves of his disease.


I am not sure how long it will take for me to learn these things. I try, fail and try again almost every day. Some days I succeed, which keeps me from giving up on the more common day of failing. It might take me to the end of his life or even the end of mine to learn these things, but I know I can and will never stop trying. My love and open heart depends on it.

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2 Heart it! July Sanders 20
2 Heart it! 20

BILLIE JOE Oct 28, 2018 8:59am

Having gone through a similar experience with my Mom years ago I like how you have begun to recognize things you know and things you can do for your well-being as everyone goes through this event in your Dad’s life.

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