Showing posts with label decisions. Show all posts
Showing posts with label decisions. Show all posts

Monday, July 6, 2015

The Choices We Make




     You ever notice that the choices we make not only affect you but those around you as well?  Take my decisions to leave the majority of my family to move to another state for the sake of my health.  And yet I personally have known others who have said, “I’m not going to leave my family.  Even if the doctor says it’s in my best interest, I won’t give up my children, my grand-children . . .” or what have you.  That’s their choice.
 
     Some live long lives and are successful with their health choices.  Others continue to hack out their lungs while babysitting grandchildren while their children are at work and end up dying anyway.
 
     Sometimes it becomes a larger burden for the child (or children) to bury the parent than it would have been if the parent had just moved out of state.  Sometimes it’s easier, realizing the sacrifices that were made by said parent.  Often there are questions with either decision.  Some questions go unanswered or are misunderstood.

     My decision to move has affected Jenna’s education, as she will not be able to continue with in the dual immersion program – not at this time.  I don’t want her to lose what she has been taught and continue with her Spanish.  But foreign language is not even offered until she’s in high school. I hope to be living in a different part of the state by then.

     Our decision to leave Utah so abruptly caused stress for both Tony and Rochelle – who were also facing challenges of imperfect health. Our unorganized chaotic house only added to the stress – I’m sure.

     Mom had a good friend mentioned here and here who had secluded herself from everyone she knew – including her own family.  They all knew that she was sick.  They just didn’t know how sick.  She chose not to tell them because she did not want them to worry.  Though I do understand her choices, I think her decisions made it a lot more difficult on her family members – who knew how opposed Pam was to funerals and thus the family chose not to have one for her.  For me, it seemed symbolic to the end of her life: It felt very empty as if there was no closure. 

         I have learned throughout my life that funerals are for the living – not the deceased. I would actually be a lot more gracious with being honored once I’m deceased as it isn’t something I’m too comfortable with while I am living. I’m not big on hoopla. I didn’t even want a wedding reception. But there were a huge number of people that hoped that I would. And so I had one – for them. It did not take place until after Roland and I had been married for over a month.
    
     Are the choices we make good or bad?  Do we regret our decisions?  I don’t regret moving to Oregon.  I know that I am breathing better.  My oldest son says I definitely look happier. I am for the most part.  I smile a lot more when I go to church.  I laugh at situations that I can’t control.  I don’t worry.

     I took Jenna to the pool today and while I sat outside waiting for her, I cried for the first time since we've been in Oregon.  I was crying about being so far from my family members.  Jeanie’s having a baby shower this week. Jenna wishes we could go.  I did give shower gifts to my two pregnant girls before I left – but it’s not the same.

     I won’t hear my grand-daughter tell me she wants to go jump on the trampoline or see BJ’s smile light up when he sees me.  It makes my whole day.  I miss playing games with Kayla and Bill or the boys.  I miss their asking, “Where’s dad?”  “Where’s Jenna?”

     Two of my boys actually fought over taking Jenna trick-or-treating last year.  Tony was promised that he would get her this year.  There’s a promise broken.  I’m not sending Jenna back to Utah just to go trick-or-treating.  I think she is getting too old for trick-or-treating anyway.  Although it is easier to get away with when going door-to-door with your three-year-old niece or your five-year-old cousin.

     Corey (who actually posted this same subject and similar title to his blog here which I didn't realize until just before I posted) kept himself closeted for years knowing his decision to come out would not only affect him – but each of his family members.  I think he was scared on how we’d react.  He had already had a taste of what he thought was a bad reaction from me – and it was. 

I had behaved poorly – but not because he said he was gay – but because I had figured out that I had stopped caring about him somewhere along the way and it didn’t matter to me whether he was gay or not because I just didn’t care about him anymore.  (see post here) And that’s what is most upsetting – that I had stopped caring. 

   I am so so grateful that we’ve mended the fences that were built between us and that we are supportive of one another and that he is truly happy.  I love him with all my heart.  I love each of my family members.  It does hurt that I am so far away.
 
But I can breathe.

      Perhaps it’s selfish of me to prioritize my health over being with them.  Perhaps it seems selfish that I would rather communicate electronically rather than have my children or grandchildren remember me as hacking all the time and eventually gasping for air until I die.

     I don’t particularly want to die alone – but like Pam, I don’t want my children to worry about a funeral as the expense of them coming to Oregon or shipping my body back to Utah seems quite unnecessary.  Bury me quietly and remember me as having more years because I could breathe.  Because really, what good (or fun) am I if I’m constantly gasping for air.  I don’t want my death to be a relief to them.  I’m sure they wouldn’t (or don’t) miss the sounds.

     I’m grateful that I didn’t have to move here by myself but that I do have Roland and Jenna with me.  And as a member of the Church I automatically have a support group in the current ward (church) that I attend. I hope my decisions will bless those here as well as those that are still in Utah (and Nevada) 

     Whether I had stayed in Utah or come to Oregon, my choices would have affected my family either way.

Friday, July 3, 2015

We Really Need to Update Our Will





            When Jenna was a baby, Roland and I had our wills done with an attorney named Kevin Jackson.  We each received copies  -  but I have no clue as to where they might be right now. 

            I do remember taking my copy to my mom’s house so that each will was kept at a different location.  I may have put it in the crawl space off to the back of the house.  It could still be there, but may be discarded if the current owners come across it.  I don’t remember seeing it when we were cleaning out mom’s house.

            Regardless, it needs to be updated.  We certainly didn’t have much in the way of possessions at the time.  My main concern (still is) is that in the event Roland and I should go before Jenna is 18, I would want her to stay with my family – though I think only one address on the wheel remains valid.

            Kayla was the first name.  She was still single at the time and lived at my mom’s address.  The next person on the list was mom.  The third person on the list is one of Roland’s sisters – the one who has raised a number of children due to family situations.  The last on our list is Sunny and Patrick.  Theirs is the valid address.

            At the time all of our boys were still in school.  I had asked Kayla if she would raise Jenna and she said she would be honored.  Roland said he’d like the boys to stay with my family as well. 

            Meanwhile, Kayla has married and has three children of her own.  The boys are of age now where Jenna could live with one of them if he and his wife were willing.  I had taken Tony and Rochelle aside to tell them that they could raise Jenna in our house.  I figured they’d oblige to keeping Jenna in the dual immersion program – that was before we moved.

            Jenna said she doesn’t want to live with Tony and Rochelle.  They are definitely NOT on time people.  There seems to be tension on Tony’s part.  Always has been.  If someone gives him an inch, he’ll always wish he’d been given a mile.  He doesn’t seem grateful about things and is always complaining.  As mentioned in an earlier post, Roland’s nickname for Tony is Donald Duck.  I don’t think I want Donald Duck raising my baby.

            I had told Tony and Rochelle my wishes verbally.  Nothing in writing.  I am grateful for that, as I have changed my mind.  I think it would be better if Jenna were to go with Randy and Carrie.  Randy has always had a great mannerism about him. He will lovingly provide any discipline that will be needed.  He doesn’t blow up.  I think Randy would be a much better choice.

            I hadn’t considered Biff.  He doesn’t seem to do well with finances.  Plus he already has his hands full with Jeanie – who often seems to break out into major mood swings of her own.  I seriously think there is a chemical imbalance on her part.

            Jenna and I would both love it if she could go with Kayla and Bill.  I think Bill would do it in a heartbeat and think nothing of it.  He and Jenna seem to share the same personality – which sometimes grates on Kayla’s nerves.  Having two of them – maybe more (I think Gary might actually have a lot of Bill in him) than she is willing to handle.  But then there are pluses.  Kayla certainly wouldn’t allow Jenna to go unclaimed.  (Not that that would happen)

            I’d rather she stayed with my family than go with Roland’s.  We teach values to Jenna that Roland’s family doesn’t share.  Biff had lived with Roland’s sister for a while, and they would send him to church, but they did not attend with him.  I don’t want that.  Besides Roland’s family seem to be getting up there in years.  My sibs are all younger than me.  Though I realize age is not always a factor – there are concerns.  I am already old enough to be Jenna’s grandmother.  I’m not as active as the parents of many of her friends.

            I don’t really think there is a cause for alarm.  Roland and I will both live long enough to see Jenna graduate and get married.  But there is always room for a back up plan.  I don’t think we have any material possessions worth anybody making the trip to Oregon to make a claim – unless it’s for sentimental reasons.  But I think I have scanned most of my pictures.  But I think my brother, Corey, is the only one who would even place value on anything like that – unless Jenna, herself, wants them.

There’s probably not a whole lot of value in leaving instructions posted to a blog.  I know my family members know who I’m talking about, but how would it ever be proved in court since I’m not even using real names.  Well, I did for the attorney.  His name is real.  Don’t know his location.  I believe he’s moved twice since we first met with him.

I definitely don’t want DCFS to be in charge of the whereabouts of my little girl.  DCFS is one fouled up system in my opinion.  I don’t wish for any family members to be fighting it out in courts.  We already did that with Jenna’s sisters.  It was a losing battle all along.  Not just for us, but for them.

Don’t know why it’s on my mind even.  But it is.  There is so much we need to take care of.  Getting Oregon drivers’ licenses and plates for our car.  Finding a doctor should we ever have the need.  Maybe a dentist.  Jenna LOVES to go to the dentist.  I think that’s weird.  

Friday, January 30, 2015

Say “Hi” to Mom and Dad for me





Shilo is a sweet dog
I refer to him as “Highness”
In my posts
He was old when we got him
Loved to dig in the back yard
And escape.
I thought it odd that
The animal shelter had not
Collected him

Favorite activities:
Go for walks
And sleep

Picky Eater. 
He’s always been a picky eater
Since we’ve had him
As I mentioned in my blog before
I think his owner before us
Tied a bib around his neck
And let him sit at the dinner table
       With her

Jenna and I would take him on long walks
Or else I would put him in the car
And walk him around
After I dropped off Jenna

He could jump onto the couch
And into the car – but age has slowed him down

He stopped digging
At least two summers ago
He needs assistance climbing on anything
                                    Higher than he is
He tires a lot more easily
On our much shorter walks
He’s wheezy and his nose is dry
                                    He hasn’t eaten for three days

There isn’t a hospice for dogs.
I don’t know how miserable he is
I can only guess.

Today Roland will take him
To the animal shelter
To put him down
To send him over to where
Mom and Dad are. 
Maybe Harold will have
A treat for him. 
Harold loved
Giving treats to the resident dog
At the assisted living
I only hope Shilo isn’t as picky
And accepts Harold’s treat.

We will all miss you, Shilo.
I hope you will be happy and active
                                    On the other side

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Indefinitely


My brothers Patrick and Corey have each taken a leave of absence from their jobs.  Since she fell, all four of mom’s children have been spending several hours with her – though I’m quite certain that I have given her the least. I am the only one of her children who has not stayed the night.  (She had requested that she not be left alone)

Patrick was with her all day Sunday – the first day of the month.  And Kayla and I were there on Labor Day.  I spent eight hours on Tuesday and Thursday.  Unfortunately I think she was alone on Wednesday from morning til mid afternoon.

I had gone to a funeral that day.  I’d gone to the hospital afterward but mom was in emergency surgery.  The doctors were trying to save her legs.  I had to go get Jenna before the surgery was over.  But other family members had arrived when mom returned from surgery to her hospital room.

She was full of conversation and smiles according visiting with family members.  She talked about the summer party and the sunset that they all saw.  Everyone said they had a really good visit.  Sunny told me that I should return. 
Jenna and I left the house on Wednesday but traffic was horrible. I didn’t return to the hospital until Thursday.  She had many visitors that day.  I did mention that on this post

Thursday night she was moved to a larger room.  All four of her children gathered around her on Friday morning and we had fun.  She smiled. Laughed.  We made plans.  When Corey asked her favorite hymn, she mischievously said that it was a secret.

We were told she would be in her hospice room for 48 hours.  But the social worker was concerned about whether we’d be able to move her during the weekend.  She really did want to go home. Perhaps it would be better to transfer her to Alpine Ridge on a weekday.  Friday.  And so it was done.  Kayla and I were with her at the hospital until she was moved.  And Corey and Patrick met her at Alpine Ridge.

She hasn’t eaten over a week now.  Her breath is slow and raspy.  Her pulse goes up and down.  She is still hanging on.  And the staff at Alpine Ridge (actually, it’s Alta Ridge) has been so good to us.  They love my mom.  They want for all of us to be comfortable. 

Last night I took some Aleve.  My back has been hurting and I have not slept well. All the ideas that I had for posts have vanished – at least the ones in my head.  There were some drafts that I was able to post.  There are some thoughts that I saved into documents.  All else not written down has disappeared.  I am numb.



Kayla, who is normally a rock, is an emotional wreck.  And I, who always produces more tears than Alice (from Wonderland) am a pillar for a change.  Though the events have made both Kalya and I somewhat flakey.  I think Patrick is ready to move the both of us in as mom’s room becomes available.  

Corey and Joh decided it would be okay if none of mom's children spent last night as they both believed that there were plenty from the other side who were with her. They were still with her when we arrived this morning and watched mom fight for her last breath. I would have posted this entry to my blog this afternoon had my keyboard been working.  My mom has since passed.  I hope that she’s dancing with daddy.