We were told that the surgery to replace his damaged heart valve would take only two hours - when the two hour mark came and went with no sign of my Dad, funnily enough I didn't start worrying (well I was already worried, I didn't start worrying more).
Instead, because I hadn't anticipated being at the hospital this long I was faffing around trying to find food for Tricky. He had eaten all the food I had brought with us (an entire lunch box full) and he would be getting hungry shortly - I'm normally so organized, but my head just wasn't in the right space.
After much kafuffle, calling the kitchen and walking to the hotel down the road, two pieces of bread was all that could be found. It was one of those moments where I was so grateful that I was able to breastfeed because I was able to 'top him up' and keep him happy.
At least it kept me busy, because by now we'd passed the four hour mark and I was getting antsy. My mind was reeling and every minute felt like an eternity but I remember thinking that time didn't drag quite this slowly when it was Tricky under the knife.
Because we were trying to keep Tricky quiet-ish and were getting sick of walking around the cupboard-sized waiting room, my Mum took one step outside the door and there he was... being wheeled past us to the Intensive Care Unit, almost five hours after surgery began.
A while later we were allowed to go in and see him. It wasn't a pretty sight.
Three IVs, plus five separate syringe pumps, a ventilator, drainage tubes, wires everywhere. Even some which led straight to his heart that were connected to a defibrillator, ready to be zapped should his heart stop.
I stood next to him, held his hand, and even though he was unconscious and would be kept that way for another day, I told him I loved him and that Tricky was just outside the door and couldn't wait to see him. I bawled my eyes out, then, as we'd arranged earlier, I took his picture so that when he's all better he can see what he looked like.
No, I won't put that photo here, because it's pretty confronting. Instead, I'll put this one, taken just two days after, when he was still in ICU, barely able to move, but still gave a thumbs up.
In the days that followed, the machines (that go PING), the wires and tubes were gradually reduced and he was moved from ICU to coronary care.
It's a bit strange to see a man who has shoveled 4.5 tonnes of crap from my garden in one day become so exhausted after doing his breathing exercises that he can't talk; so tired after a shower that he needs a two hour nap; so weak that he can't lift the Sunday paper.
But that's to be expected after having your sternum sawn in half, I'm told.
And today... well today he comes home. One week. Apparently that's all it takes to heal from open heart surgery. Though, after seeing how overworked the hospital was, I'm convinced he's not so much "recovered" as "taking up space". Taking up a bed that some other poor sucker, who is about to tread the same path as my Dad, is quite literally dying to have.
Major thanks again to everyone who sent their best wishes and prayers, and to Kim of All Consuming who reminded me that my Dad now has to say "That's not a scar, THIS is a scar"
Glowless rocked the Aussie Bloggers Conference thanks to