This is the last photo Matthias took of me before we said goodbye over two weeks ago. I think the photo captures a bit of how I was feeling – very sad to leave Matthias and yet so relieved to be able to see my parents again.

I can’t believe I’ve only been in NJ for two weeks. It feels like so much longer because my days are so packed with many things to keep me extremely busy. My days and nights have been filled with caring for my dear parents and I am trying to savor every single second with them. My parents have expressed their gratitude many times for all the ways that I’ve been able to help them.

Overall, my dad is doing fairly well in the nursing home but he has lost a significant amount of weight which concerns me greatly. Despite his disease, dad is still very vocal and able to express himself. However, it takes him a long time to get the words out which frustrates him greatly. I really love being with my dad and visit him once or twice a day, usually at lunchtime or dinnertime. Sometimes I read different parts of the Bible to him and he always has a good comment or question for me.

I was able to re-submit our application for Medicaid last week and now I am waiting for a reply. I hope that my parents are approved soon but I imagine it will take at least several weeks to receive an answer. I don’t know when I will go back to Japan, but I am hopeful it will be sometime in December. I am thankful for Skype which allows me to chat with my husband every night. While I do miss our many friends and our life in Japan, I am exceedingly thankful for this time with my parents and I look forward to celebrating Thanksgiving with them in two days.