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Eric's decision

Oh, my friends. My hands are shaking so badly I can hardly hit the keys--I so dread bringing you this news.

Dad had a very frank talk with his doctor today, who told him that his kidneys will never recover. Dad found himself looking down a road of three-week hospital stays to treat the AML, but each extra precious day that might buy him would be punctuated by three hours of dialysis. No more traveling. No more biking. No extra lead on the tether that would chain him to machines for the rest of his life.

And so, in true Wedellian fashion (thanks for Rick Davis for coining that term at Dad's retirement party ten years ago), Dad has chosen to go out on his own terms. He will be transferred to Davis Hospice Center in Cheyenne in about an hour. Auntie Barb, Carl, and I fly in tomorrow to be with him and Mom.

It occurs to me--and both Mom and Dad reminded us of this when they broke the news to Carl, Heather, Dan, and me this afternoon--that people have been mortal for as long as the human race has existed. And yet there is no road map in my DNA that tells me how to do this. There is no set of guidelines that will explain to me how to let go of the man who taught me to ride a bike--who gave me away at my wedding--who takes such obvious joy in my only child. And so, like everyone before me, I will have to figure it out for myself. I do not relish the task. But I have no choice.

For those of you who know him and are in Cheyenne, he wants to say goodbye. This will be announced in church tomorrow too, I believe, so he is expecting--and will take joy in--the inevitable stream of visitors. If you would like to go and see him, please feel free to do so.

Thanks, once again, for everything you've done for us, Team Eric. I am so, so sorry this is not the outcome we've worked so hard for--but I guess the lesson here is that these things are never truly in our hands. Your love and prayers have brought him back to the home he loves, though, and for that, we--and especially Dad--will always be grateful. Now go hug someone you love--and don't forget to tell them you love them. That's the most important part.

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