Showing posts with label good-bye. Show all posts
Showing posts with label good-bye. Show all posts

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

Monday, October 13, 2014

Saying Hello and Good-bye to Autumn

Whereas autumn seemed to linger for several months last year, I believe that the cycle will be over all too quickly this year.

I had heard the mountain trees had started turning in August.  But as for my view of Salt Lake City valley, the trees (or the majority of them anyway) did not start turning until last week.

            There are still many green trees that haven’t handled the chill in the same way as those that are already starting to lose leaves.  What?  The ones that started turning last Monday are now shedding their leaves for the winter?  

            Toward the end of the week, I did notice more that were turning.  This morning I saw radiant beauty of yellow and orange golds, one tree that was undressing and still a wide variety of green.  I’d like to see them radiate color before the winter brings snow – if it brings snow.

            I heard that it had started snowing in the mountains earlier than it has in the past.  I don’t know.  I don’t seem to go to the mountains as much as I used to.  And yet I’m so close to them. 

            Weather is peculiar!

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Walking in Heaven

I don’t know when mom became an avid walker or how many years she and Pam Sanders had walked together practically every weekday morning.  I know that Corey was still in high school and driving because many times mom and Pam would end their walk at the high school and take the car.

            Once, as they were leaving the parking lot, a security officer from the high school pulled them over to see their ID – wondering why the car was being driven off the high school grounds during school hours.  I guess he figured out that they weren’t high school students. They laughed about the experience of being pulled over and stopped by a diner on their way home. 

            The girl behind the counter started to ring up their order.  I don’t know what they ordered, but evidently it was available at a senior price.  Neither one of them were of age at the time, but took the discount as they had been offended that they had gone from high school teenagers to senior citizens in the matter of only a few minutes.

            They didn’t always do the four miles.  Some days they would only do two.  Mom was in really great shape physically and sorely missed her walks when she had broken her bones one year and her leg was in a cast.

            I didn’t pay much attention to when mom and Pam got back into their routine or when they had stopped walking due to Pam’s ailing health – which seemed to come and go but lingered more as the years passed.

            Pam volunteered to assist with my wedding and worked in the kitchen and fixed plates for any guest who happened to the open house. 

            She and Jenna became fast friends when Jenna was two and three years old.  I remember giving her a picture of Jenna and she was thrilled. 

            As Jenna got older, Pam’s health deteriorated. I did not see much of hear or even hear much for that matter.  My own mom had her good days and bad days after she’d been diagnosed with dementia.  Pam seemed to have disappeared from her mind along with so many others she had known 40 – 50 years.  I stopped by a few times just to see how Pam was doing, but I never did see her again.  Her health had gotten worse.

            Today I heard that she had passed.  I don’t have the details.  I am hoping that I will be able to attend her funeral.  That makes how many that I’ve gone to in less than a year? 

            Corey posted a thought to facebook that perhaps the two of them are taking a walk right now.  What a nice thought.

Saturday, March 1, 2014

Saying Good-Bye to Mom's Angel

I wondered which one of us (me or my brother Corey) would post about Harold first.  I came up with most of these thoughts and typed them in by 1:00 am this morning - but only drafted it as I had no title.

Last year we (my sibs and I) put mom into an assisted living program as she was in need of 24/7 care.  This time last year she was trying to escape.  She wore her coat and carried her purse and would walk around the doors and windows of the facility – looking for a way out.  She wasn’t happy there – not all the time anyway.

By mid April, mom had accepted her new home and was reading everything she could get her hands on.  She didn’t retain anything.  But she did read.

I don’t think it was until May when she developed an attraction to Harold and soon the two became inseparable.  I find it interesting that Corey created this post on June 3.  Mom has a boyfriend.  And just one month later I created this post indicating that he was not.  Depending on her mood.

Actually, I don’t ever recall mom referring to Harold as her boyfriend.  That was more from our point of view.  It really depended on mom’s mood and the turn of events that took place each day.

Harold had known that mom was diabetic and was not supposed to have sugar.  And some days he’d scold her or strongly advice against satisfying her “sugar eating desire” Those were the days when she would not even acknowledge Harold as a friend.  He became “that guy” – an intrusive resident. 

Other days (I’m finding in most cases) mom was infatuated so much that she would rather remain in the company of Harold than to have to leave him in order to visit with one of us.  Corey lovingly wrote this post about feeling like “second fiddle” – but not really.  It did seem somewhat comical at times.

In the beginning, Harold was just “an old man – old enough to be mom’s father” or so she’d say.  I figured there were probably a good number of years between them – nothing that drastic however.  I had asked Harold his age and learned it was a twelve-year difference.  The same as with my sister and her husband.

By August mom was beaming while telling people about her friend, Harold.  In her mind they were only five years apart.  I find it interesting that her mind had gone from one extreme to another in only two months.  For each month she lived there, she fully believed it had been another year.

Harold was quite bent over.  For the most part when I saw him, he was wearing blue scrubs.  He was very positive and always wore a smile on his face.  He and my mom were so very happy to have one another.  Funny how they never sat together for meals.  Except for mealtime, rarely was one ever seen without the other.

On September first, after mom was found upon the floor and rushed to the hospital, the staff told Harold to get rid of all of his candy.  Harold blamed himself for mom’s condition.  But it wasn’t his fault.  A few fun-sized candy bars would not have made her blood count go that high.  Two truckloads of candy would probably not have made her blood sugar go that high.

We thought she would die in the hospital.  Harold had made arrangements for one of his sons to bring him to the hospital to see her.  He was all decked out in suit and tie.  He came in to visit with mom and held her hand and talked to her with his loving voice. 

Mom didn’t wish to die in the hospital.  She wanted to return to the assisted living.  She lay in her room in a hospital bed and Harold would come to visit – knowing she would pass.  He was ever so gentle with her.  He loved her. And she him.

When he wasn’t in her room, he would visit with Joh and tell him things about his relationship with my mom.  Joh said it was my mom’s desire for she and Harold to wed and maybe have a child together.  Harold had reminded her that they both had spouses already.

At the funeral he rushed to the casket for one last good-bye.  I had never seen Harold move so quickly.  It was also the straightest I had ever seen his posture.

After she died, Harold tried to return to living without her.  He wanted to smile and help with the residents the way he had before.  And he did . . . for a while.  But in time the smile faded.  He missed mom!  There was no doubt about it.

Corey would call him.  Kayla and I would visit on occasion.  Jenna and I would take the bus.  We may have stopped when we no longer had bus passes.  But I would write to him and call him and let him know we would come see him when the weather cleared.

I thought we could go during Jenna’s Valentine/Presidents Day holiday – unfortunately she got sick.  And I am currently with my annual February sinus infection.  I planned to call him when my head cleared.  I guess there’s no sense in calling.  His daughter-in-law called me and told me that Harold is now on hospice.  That is a good thing really. 

The last two times that Jenna and I did visit was heart breaking.  Harold seemed so bent to the floor that it appeared his head was nearly in alignment with his feet.  He was banged up in different places each time we would visit.  He had taken I don’t know how many spills.  He would walk us to the door but he had slowed down.  But he’s going to be whole again pretty soon.  And he will finally be able to meet dad.  He and mom can have a reunion and the two couples can have a party.  It will be great!

I’m sorry that Harold declined so much after my mom passed.  I am sorry he became so sad.  He really didn’t enjoy living there.  And now he won’t have to anymore.  Thank you, Harold, for befriending mom and for allowing her to experience the joy.  May you share some great moments in the afterlife as well.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Another Send Off - Returning Home

Before Jenna turned five she was introduced to Isaac – a cousin to Paula – who, at the time, was Biff’s platonic girlfriend. 
Roland asked Isaac how old he would be (or what age he’d just turned – I forget what time of the year it was) We both figured at least nine.  Both of us were quite floored when he answered seven..  He was too tall to be only seven. He was actually quite tall for nine.   Surely Jenna and Isaac were more than just two years apart.

     Isaac’s mom was involved with an Easter tradition.  Every year right after Church, the children would look for the plastic eggs that the adults had hid around the yard – her father’s yard to be exact.  Paula had outgrown the tradition and had asked Biff to bring Jenna so that Isaac and Paula’s brother weren’t hunting for eggs by themselves.  So from 2009 to 2012 Jenna has always done Easter with Isaac and his family.  


     Each year the hunt happened at Grandpa’s house – until last year.  Ruth and Nim had moved into a new house – she felt that her yard was ready.  Biff and Paula hadn’t spent much time together, but he was still friends with Isaac’s mom, Ruth.  She had asked him if he would assist with Easter set up.  He took Jenna with him and they spent the night.

Paula had told me that she came from a dysfunctional family.  I didn’t realize how dysfunctional until earlier this year. It’s true that Ruth had been excited to have Easter at her house – but it was not the same as it had been at grandpas.  I think Grandpa himself had been invited, but nobody else in the family had.  There had been a falling out, continuous squabbles – quite strained relationships among Ruth and her siblings.  It sounded horrible.  I feel quite grateful that I couldn’t (nor can) relate.

When Jenna was in first grade, Grandpa’s home was a sanctuary – I told her that if I was ever late picking her up, she was to wait for me at Paula and Isaac’s grandpa’s house. That was before the adult brother moved in and basically pushed his parents into the back room – taking away almost every inch of space from the house to store his worthless belongings and himself.  This year I told her NOT to go to Grandpas.  Even Ruth and Isaac would rather not be there.  I now understand why it takes him so long to cross the field.

Ruth, from what I understand, has always been insecure about her looks.  She has always felt overweight and unhealthy.  Others had made fun of her size and said unkind things that did hurt her emotionally.  But she was very strong willed and never unkind to anyone.  She was a friend to everyone – including those that had put her down. I thought she was beautiful both inside and out.

She did not have the Easter hunt this year.  Her health has been poor.  She was scheduled to have her hernia removed back in May.  But there was the issue with her weight.  She needed to lose several pounds and reschedule.  I don’t know how many times the surgery was postponed.  I had talked with her over the phone only a few times during the summer.  I had been to her house only one time.

Ruth’s home was always in chaos.  She just didn’t seem to have the strength to pick up after her two boys.  She considered them more than a blessing.  She said that Nim and the boys completed her life.   But somehow the boys didn’t appear to give her any help.  I don’t know why.  Isaac is such a sweet and thoughtful boy.  He has been a tremendous friend to Jenna. 

His little brother has a crush on Jenna.  He also looks older than he is – a little replica (well, smaller version – both boys are huge) of Isaac.  He just started kindergarten this year and Isaac will be starting junior high (or middle school) next year.

Ruth’s last surgery was scheduled for Friday, October 11.  She so wanted to lose the weight and get healthy not just for herself but for her boys. She died on the operating table.  I seem to be shedding more tears than with my own mom’s death.  I just feel so bad for Isaac and Marvin.  Marvin was so attached to his mother.  I don’t know if he will fully understand that mommy isn’t coming back or why.  He cannot depend on her anymore the way he used to.

Biff and I attended her funeral this afternoon.   We had gone early to attend the viewing.  I saw Ruth’s brother in the hall.  Her mom was near the casket – but that was all the family I saw.  No grandpa (her father) no Isaac, no Marvin, no Nim.  Ruth was in her casket smiling.  It was small, but still, it appeared as a smile. I don't think I've ever seen a smiling corpse before.

I visited with the principal of the school that both Isaac and Jenna attend.  She was the only person (besides Ruth) that I recognized. (How convenient it was for both of us that the funeral was just next door to the school.)  School let out before the funeral was over. 

You would think a family like that would have seen death before – but the funeral itself seemed to be a very unfamiliar situation for most of the family – at least from my point of view. I would imagine both Ruth and her dad have attended funerals before. 

Somebody escorted the two boys into the chapel.   I went to where they were seated and gave Isaac a hug and asked if he was okay.  He was holding a stack of homemade cards that I'm guessing had been created by his classmates. I started crying before I returned to my seat. I just couldn’t seem to pull myself together.

Nim joined his boys shortly after I sat down.  I’d never met him before and so introduced myself.  He looked broken.  They sat in the chapel with some other of his family members.  I don’t know if they were ever in the same room with the casket

Nim and the boys missed out on the family prayer as it was in the RS room and they were in the chapel.  Perhaps it was easier for them.  I don’t know. When the congregation was told to stand while the family filed in, Nim and his family stood along with the congregation and thus most all of the family members who filed in remained standing also. 

I think it is the first LDS funeral I’ve been to where I have seen the family stand and not take their seats once they had filed in. I know I've taken my seat as a family member while the congregation stood for us.

The services were nice.  Ruth is very well loved.  I enjoyed learning more about the great woman that she was.  I hope Isaac will remember the love and that he will take the advice of the speakers.  She will definitely be missed.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Two Weeks

Two weeks after I started my blog I became part of a search party who went out looking for mom who had dementia and had wandered from home.  She could not be left alone.  Each of us worked out a schedule so that someone would always be with her.

Two weeks after this year started mom was released from the hospital and spent her last night at the house she’d lived in for over fifty years. It had been on a Sunday when Ellen found my mom passed out and called for Nate to assist.  Patrick ended up taking her to the hospital.  He and Nate were both dressed for church but stayed at the hospital all day. They did not go to Church that day. Patrick had chosen to stay with mom. On Monday mom’s four children worked together to fill out the paperwork to move mom into assisted living. On Wednesday Kayla took mom to her new home at the assisted living facility – the last place she would live. And Corey came from Las Vegas to assist and say good-bye to the house. 

Two weeks ago we lay mom to rest - buried beside my dad.  She’d been rushed to the hospital two weeks prior to that.  It was on a Sunday when she was found passed out on the floor. She'd been rushed to the hospital. Patrick met her at there.   He was dressed for church but stayed at the hospital all day.  He did not go to Church that day.  He had chosen to stay with mom. He took the next two weeks off.  And Corey drove from Las Vegas to say good-bye.  We all spent time with her for 7-10 days.  And then she finally let go.

Two weeks ago Corey and Kayla and I met Fern and Michelle at the Mortuary.  We watched Corey and the Mortician dress my mom.  Michelle applied some lipstick – that’s all that was needed.  Mom looked like she always does when she falls asleep. She still has her purse.

Two weeks ago we talked with family and friends who had come to pay their last respects.  Sunny offered a beautiful prayer before we all went into the chapel. I tied mom’s bow and veiled her face – my final act of service for her.  The lid was closed.  I think Brian cried the hardest. His sobs just seemed louder than the rest - maybe because he's a giant.

 Two weeks ago today we paid our last respects and shared our stories and beautiful thoughts for such a marvelous woman.  Daddy’s birthday was the day after the farewell services.  It was on a Sunday. Corey had planned to spend this week with mom. Instead she's spending it with dad.  We miss you mom! (and dad)

Tuesday, September 10, 2013


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.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Good-bye T-Mobile: I Now Have Consumer Cellular!

I have had so many problems with T-Mobile the last couple of years, it’s a wonder I haven’t dropped them sooner. I created this post last year and had actually taken it down for two days when I thought that the problem had been resolved – but returned it two days later as there was still miscommunication.  
My brother-in-law had also switched to Consumer Cellular – but was without service for a month.  He blames T-Mobile.  I don’t have all the details, but because of my own experience, I think that sounds pretty accurate. 
I decided that we would just keep our phones and have new SIM cards through Consumer Cellular.  I was pretty distraught to learn that I would still have to call T-Mobile to get the SIM unlocked as we wished to keep our current phone numbers.  I ended up going through four people before I was given instructions and could receive the rest by email.
It really didn’t take as long as they said – well at least for my phone.  I was able to follow the step by step instructions that T-Mobile sent me (surprise) and was able to connect no problems and now I am no longer with T-Mobile.  However Roland’s number is still on the T-mobile plan because they had indicated that the set up will not work at this time but that we can try again in 40 days.  What the flip????
I won’t be billed for Consumer Cellular for at least another month. But thus far I like them like a zillion times better.  And I can’t imagine that I will ever be as upset with them as I am with T-Mobile – though I have had some really professional treatment from some employees – I’ve had to deal with more that seem clueless or don’t have the authority, major buck passers – major run around.  No wonder their mascot is a droid. I am so tired of it.
I think we need to find another way to free up Roland’s SIM before waiting forty days.  Because really, what guarantee do we have that it will work in 40 days?  What a bunch of bogus crap.  I’d like my days of dealing with T-Mobile to be behind me FOREVER!