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happy-life

Life is not an exact science… as we so hope it can be.  It is neither black nor white.  In fact it is immersed with many grey areas and very stricken shadows that feel they will never leave you.  The cavities that strike us seem that our pain will never go away.  As the gaping hole deepens our nerves pinch to the decay that doesn’t cease to be pain free.  If one thing has been learned, such shadows of cavities that strike the most profound decay will not allow damage if we choose it not to be.  We choose whether we are to be filled with God’s soothing presence through to console and fill us or we choose to loose the battle even when others have chosen to move on.

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 The years of remission were too short lived.  The cavity came out and the root became damaged with just the inevitable.  2010 struck hard to this clan of grown children bidding for the life of their father to gain more strength. 

PAIN STRUCK HARD

My passions in prayer and desires of life seemed a far cry and distance away from the reports of the doctors and my mother.  If ever there were a time to live in Utopia, it would be now.  Day dreams filled with what perfection would be … it only entailed pure health.  Not the cynical and ever greedy desires filled with money and vanity. 

Just health…

PAIN… YET NO TEARS

2010 and the cavity striking my father’s charge of death was slowly returning for one last tour.  We still had one last battle cry to go forth.  With all vigor and power we surrendered to the only high power we knew of, we charged ahead as we always did.  Wielding the Sword of the Spirit behind the shield of Faith.  We knew only the spirit could lead us when our trust had no borders of where to turn too for shelter. 

“Cynthia, Papi is strong.  No need for fear.  Just keep praying like we always have.  Papi is strong.” I told myself.  My thoughts were a war against my better judgment.  Fear was striking its stance.

“He’s already calling me at 5am, 6am, 7am… just to ask for prayer.  I’m scared.  He must feel weak.”  I no longer felt like the precious ‘daddy’s little girl’ to the all-powerful man who raised me.  He needed me.  I felt him weak.  Fear would strike and prayer would begin.

MY TEARS CAME.  THIS TIME I DIDN’T TRY TO HOLD THEM BACK.

For the past year my parents had gone to live in Puerto Rico.  The distance pained me to know my Papi wasn’t around us during a time where we knew was difficult.

“Papi how are you doing?” I would call to ask.

“Happy on Life {Feliz de la Vida}” Papi would answer with no question in his tone.

“Papi are you sure.  You have me concerned” I would try to push the true response.

“Mi Santa (My Saint), there is no need for alarm.  I can never be happier on life {Feliz de la Vida}.  I will be with my children soon. “  He answered.

“Ok. Can’t Wait”…. Concerned I asked for my mother.  Just her tone would state the obvious.  She was weary of being a full-time nurse. 

SILENT PAIN

“If someone were to see my pain, they wouldn’t understand.  Is it my lacking of faith to show how I would give anything to take all pain, all suffering from my father?” My thoughts were rushed daily and a better time seemed like a place that would never exist again.  My thoughts began to slip into a mundane world filled with the inner pain of what my father was dealing with.  My hands were tied and only God knew how to untie them.

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My tribe and I rode up to the airport and saw the beautiful white head of hair on this warrior.  As I parked and got out to greet him, my eyes teared at the site of this long awaited encounter.  My Papi was back home.  When I took him in, I saw a frail man with pain as he walked – through each step a smile of excitement grew with relief that he made it home.  Papi knew he was never to return to Puerto Rico… He was home with his babies, his own treasures that God blessed him with. 

For the following two months he was in and out of hospitals.  More treatments were pumped into his system as he fought for his life.  I learned so much of whom he was during the weeks that passed.  We rejoiced for every morsel of food he ate and every drink of water that he took.

It never ceased to amaze me how when we asked, “Papi, how do you feel today?”  His constant reply was, “Estoy feliz de la vida! {I am happy with my life”.  During this entire time I was strong, yet inwardly I felt weak and his words constantly gave me strength.

“He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.” Psalm 91:1~2

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His words were vague and muffled, but I understood his lips as “Te Amo” formed in an echo to my ears.  No more were his jokes filling the air, but silence as he lay in his bed.   He was home in hospice and my family and I spent as much time with him as possible.  The airs’ were filled with songs, prayers, memories, stories from long ago and LOVE filtered through it all.

“Just one more day”… my prayers seemed to say.

“Please God, take this pain away…” is all I was able to mutter out.

“Papi te amo” I told him gently in his ear.  He nodded his head.

Papi, tell me you love me… please…” I was totally being selfish and knew he pained to speak.  Yet, to my beautiful surprise, he turned and pushed out the most important words ever spoken through his lips toward me, “Te  Amo Mi Santa” (I love you my saint). 

… and that was it… the last of his voice I heard.

A few days later my family and I stood around his bed, saying good-bye.  It was time.  Papi lay there in a room solemn with peace.  His vitals were declining and my beautiful mother surrendered over him saying,

“Radame, thank you for teaching me how to love, how to breathe, and how to love once more.  You taught me who God truly was and how in surrendering to Him we were able to have a beautiful life together.  Together we had three children that were raised in the fear and admonition of Christ.  Because of you, we raised them right.  It was only us five all along.  Do not worry, because they will take care of me.  Thank you for loving me as you did.  God thank you for blessing me with a man that was my best friend, my head, my lover, and my mate for life.  Thank you father God because you chose him for me and I for him.  You did right by us always.  Radame, do not worry over your children because they are blessed with your legacy, your love, your willingness to do the will of God before all things.  Together we raised them right. “  Her words filled the air as if it were sweet incense that escaped her tongue as Papi’s soul drifted into the heavens past the pearly gates.

She gently asked Papi’s siblings to leave the room and allow her children to mourn.  They left and no longer my mother was a wife.   She allowed that hat to drift with his soul and held each one of us.  I was 5 years-old once more as my mother held me to peace.  She did the same three times over.

I could have angered against my God, but quickly His spirit reminded me, “Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me. (Psalm 23:4)

God, in my weakness and worse moments you provided me strength and power to rise.  Papi fought the good fight of faith, he never gave up.  He beat the odds by more than seven years.  Instantly, I was reminded by every miraculous moment we had with him, how through every downfall he rose again.  I was reminded how we ALWAYS stood strong as a family.  This clan began with 2 and that quickly turned into five…. Now an entire tribe exists with the legacy of an amazing man, Radame Galarza  {08/13/1949-08/09/2010}.

Papi&Me_2008

Papi & I

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My wedding day… Father and Daughter Dance. {I never touched the floor… pure love}

Family Photo 80's

Here it is, the Galarza Family in it’s original essence. :0)
Mommy, Papi
Omar, Me & Rady (My brothers and I)

Galarza_Family_Disney

Family Trip to Disney
I remember this like it was yesterday!
{Yup! My daddy has bigger muscles than your daddy lol)

Papi&Mommy

Mommy & Papi
{WOW! What a hunk!}

Papi&me:Bottle

Always will be daddy’s little girl!
Papi & I… I was about 2-years-old here…

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Papi
He was around 18 years-old here in Puerto Rico

photo[3]

The best parents in the world!
True soul mates and Godly in every way. Thank you God for blessing me with them!

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Papi {How I miss you!}

Family_JoannWedding

The Galarza Family All Grown up.

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Some may wonder as to why I have decided to write this short story of my father’s battle with multiple myeloma cancer.  It is very important, that through every circumstance we see the hand of God playing a big part to help us through.  At times there are small miracles and in other moments, big miracles.  It is not of God’s choosing to make one sick, let alone to take someone we love from us.  I have come to realize how much the enemy does to take our peace, joy, happiness, etc. away.  The word of God states in John 10:10, “10 The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy.” It is great to note how the Apostle John does not leave us in a somber state of hopelessness.  He then finishes this verse with, ”I [Jesus Christ] have come that they may have life, and that they may have it more abundantly.”   My father LIVED his life… he didn’t regret his past failures nor his downfalls.  He enjoyed the moments he had with us; he LOVED and was happy on life (Feliz de la Vida) regardless of his circumstance.  There were two major lessons he raised my brothers and I with, The Power to LOVE and the Power of PRAYER.

Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and live righteously, and he will give you everything you need.(Matthew 6:33)

Papi left us his legacy of Seeking God first and to love unconditionally, without prejudice and strife, without drama and pain, without remorse… We must Love because regardless of all our own past failures and skeletons in the closet, God has and will continue to love us FIRST.

Thank you for taking this journey with me.  It was not easy for me to do an “instant replay” of this hard time.  Yet I know that someone out there will be blessed by it.  I’m a true believe that when we feel we cannot anymore, He has created in us a strength that is beyond measure and a hope that will birth forth life.  My prayer is you may find peace knowing that you will once again be strong.  You will smile again with your toughest moments making you a champion of the world overcoming the odds and not give up… BUT LIVE. I pray you will not be so guarded that you build a wall that imprisons you… be free in Jesus name and allow HIS love to overcome you.

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This is the last page on {Papi}.  To read the previous pages of this short story, just click on these following link.  Page 1, Page 2, Page 3, & Page 4.

Till Next Post…

Cynthia