July 5, 2008

Trip to Hawaii - Day 1

July 4 Several weeks ago my mom told me that my 88-year-old Grandfather was diagnosed with terminal cancer. He had surgery to remove some cancerous cells in his abdominal area in early June and the MD discovered it spread into his lymph nodes and was the aggressive type. He recovered in the hospital and returned home; but because of the diagnosis, his only option is pain management. I needed to go home to see him. I booked the earliest cheapest flight back home and off I went.

It's a good thing Mama Inday is here to help us watch the kids. I've tried to prepare them as best I can. It won't be too difficult for Anna and Noha; but it will be interesting with Rory. She has not been separated from me for more than a day.

The flight to Phoenix was peaceful. I promised myself I would knit the entire way; and I was diligent too. I started knitting at the airport in St. Louis, on the flight to Phoenix (2-1/2 hours), and on the way to Honolulu (6+ hours). My hands are tired and I now know why I like crocheting better than knitting: at least I feel more accomplished crocheting. I think I knitted only 2-1/2 inches in length total.
*sigh* I'm so not knitting for the rest of the trip.
Flying over the Pacific.

Welcome home!

I arrived 30 minutes earlier than expected. The tail winds helped us to get to Hawaii faster. It is N A S T Y humid and I feel sticky, stinky, and I desparately want to take a shower. I do not miss this weather.

I tried to call Mom as soon as I touched down. It sounded as if everyone was at the house in Kalihi and my mom couldn't hear me. It's a good thing I only brought my purse and one carry-on. She told me my cousin Jessie was on his way and then hung up. Great. I didn't even know what car he's driving.

Jess picked me up at the airport and we headed over to Kalihi. He told me Grandpa was doing okay and was able to move around even if he was in pain. I didn't know what to expect when I got to the house. There were children everywhere and more than half of them I only remember as babies.

I walked into Grandma and Grandpa's room. He was lying down. I went over to him and gave him a big hug.

"Hi, Grandpa! It's Jane. I came all the way from St. Louis to see you."

"You stay, Jane? Where are your kids?"

"Sorry, Grandpa, I could not bring them with me. It's too expensive to fly them all here. But I came so I can see you and spend time with you. How are you doing?"

"Not so good, anak. Ag sakit."

Grandpa looked the same, yet different. I know that sounds stupid, but he still looked like good old Grandpa, but strangely confined to his bed. He is always doing something around the house and it was Grandma who is always lying down, not him. He is paler than his normal dark brown skin tone. He didn't have his false teeth on.

I tried to show him the photos and video I recorded of my kids the night before. But he fell asleep from the medication. I ended up showing them video to Grandma, Shirley, and my mom.

I pray Grandpa will be okay. I'm glad I'm here.

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