After walking, hiking, trekking or climbing, there is something so sweet about coming home. This year, I came back to Oakdale where my sweet father lives. It’s close to my home as he lives in Oakdale and I’m near Sacramento, California.
Prior to jumping on my flight home, my dear husband George and mighty dog Zoey met Sid and I, in Salem, Virginia. George had driven across country to support me on the trail. With his new purchase, a 19’ Travel Trailer, the plan was to follow me as I continued nobo on the AT. Well we all know how plans go. We make plans and God laughs! So George and I had 24 hours of hugs and kisses & Zoey finally had us all back together again. Little did she know, it was not going to last long.
We made the best of times. We all went to dinner, some Southern Cooking was in order. After dinner, we saw the new “Top Gun- Maverick” movie. My grandson has never seen Top Gun before. I couldn’t believe it. He must be the only person on this planet that hasn’t seen the best movie ever! If you haven’t watched it yet, do yourself a favor and go see it. I’ve never been too excited about sequels but I must admit, this was all sorts of entertaining.
Afterwards, we indulged in Dairy Queen Frosties or Blizzards-the ice cream you can turn upside-down and it still stays in your cup! Such a nice reunion. We waddled back to our Hotel and quickly I fell asleep.
Friday morning was a whirlwind of activity. I had been staying in contact with my sister and she was giving me updates on Dad. Prior to me leaving, Dad had open-heart surgery which was followed up with an implanted pacemaker-defibrillator. Needless to say, things didn’t go as well as expected. His heart wasn’t responding properly and his medications were causing severe side effects. My sister Kari called 911 out of desperation, and Dad was whisked away.
When I left the trail this year, I had asked Jesus to give me that compass for my next few steps. I had no idea what I was going back to. When I stepped off the plane, Kari was waiting. She updated me on all things Dad and was reassuring that he was in good and capable hands. The last two months while I was hiking, Kari kept Dad under constant care. She was with him 24/7 to the point there was no time for herself. She wouldn’t say it but she needed help. There is something that family understands without words, and this was my time to take the reigns. We laughed, we cried and we consoled each other. What a blessing to have a sister who you can share life with.
In times like these, I lean so heavily on the Lord, his grace and healing powers are my hope. Right now I am sitting in the hospital with Dad, trying to watch the Dodgers do what they do best. Win Baseball Games! My Dad loves the Dodgers. He has been a fan from the beginning of time and I am happy to support his team. In reality, the Dodgers are my Home Team too. The game didn’t go so good for Dodger fans, so we moved on to Hallmark Movies. Yes, Dad is a helpless romantic. Another thing we have in common. Here I sit watching our movie, while Dad says, “I’m still listening!” He’s fast asleep.
So with all this, I still yearn for another mile on the trail, just one more uphill, maybe a thunder and lightning show of power, and an elusive stream to soak my tired feet. Two months was not enough but right now, it will have to suffice. I truly believe that I am exactly where I am suppose to be. God’s compass has directed me here. So my walk may change but the sweet Lord will always direct me! I find such peace in Him, the love of Jesus and am thoroughly blessed by all of you! I am immensely grateful for the outpouring of love, support and prayers I have received in the past few days. Thank you, each and everyone of you, who have walked with me through this journey. I will return to the trail when the Lord swings open that door again, but for now, I am right where I need to be. Home sweet home.
4 thoughts on “June 28, 2022. Home Sweet Home”
Oh my sweet friend….. you always inspire me how God uses you in all areas of your life. Praying for your daddy and so happy God put you exactly where you are suppose to be right now. (And right on with the Hallmark movies! ❤️)
(Also, I have not seen Sid in a couple of years, I would not have recognized him had I walked by him on the street… wow!)
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Your a saint Kelly. Best wishes four your Dad and entire family.
Just getting back from 10 days at Glacier Nat’l Park (God’s country) and this is your first blog I’ve seen in a while. So sorry to hear about your dad’s health. I’ll be praying for your dad and for you to be able to get back on those trails:) I’ve so enjoyed your inspirational journey:)
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Dad is getting stronger each and everyday. Just like we all did on the trail. I look forward to returning. If not this year, next. Thank you for your words of encouragement and faith in me.
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