I had always thought of him as just mydad, but that all changed four years ago. My dad has an illness calledCrohn‘s disease, which is very dangerous. There is no cure butthere is medicine that helps. Even with medicine, though, his illness isbrutal.
When I came home from school the day after Christmasbreak ended, my dad wanted to talk to me. He explained that the doctorsaid he needed surgery. I felt like my heart had just been ripped out ofme. I was so scared for him. My dad had never shown much emotion but nowI could feel his fear. The surgery was scheduled for January 7, givinghim only a week to prepare physically and mentally.
My dad had tobe in the hospital the night before the surgery for the doctor toperform an exploratory procedure to see how things would go in the majorsurgery. I was in bed, not sleeping. I was scared knowing I could losemy dad.
I woke up the next morning and knew that my dad wassupposed to be out of surgery already. I ran to the living room to findmy three sisters crying. I knew something had happened but was tooscared even to ask. My sister told me that the doctor hurried themidnight operation and Dad started to bleed and lost two pints of blood.The doctor rushed him in for another operation to try to fix theproblem.
My sisters and I hurried to the hospital. All I couldthink of on the way there was my dad telling me he loved me and thathe‘d be all right.
When we got there, we went to his roomand found him in bed, smiling. He sat us down and we talked about whathad happened. My dad told us that in his near-death experience he hadseen Grandpa, who‘d told him to go back to us and take care of us.Thank God my dad listened.
That was one of the scariest days ofmy life. Without my dad my life would be ruined. Now every time my dadgoes for a check up with the doctor who performed the first surgery, Igive him dirty looks. He almost killed my dad. All I can say is,I‘m one of the luckiest kids to have a dad like mine.
This piece has been published in Teen Ink’s monthly print magazine.