Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Cremation talk, Morphine and feeling lost/unneeded (well, sort-of)...

It's truly amazing how many friends my Dad has accumulated over the years...many of whom were always close family friends and "around" but somehow without me realizing that Dad, I think, surrounded my brother, Anne and I with the people we would absolutely need if something ever happened to him (not sure he realized that either).  The outpouring of kind words, offers to help and just basic support has been overwhelming and comforting at a time like this.  Unfortunately, there are some people that have a harder time handling this "death" thing than others and it's hard for me not to label them as "fair-weather friends."  I'm so protective of Dad that it's difficult not to be angry at those I know are important to him that haven't shown up or even sent a card.  Guess I should get over it.

So far this week has been a lot of the same.  Dad seems to be in about the same place as I left off in the last blog: really physically weak, to the point of needing help with just about everything.  The difference in this week  is that Anne is now home with Dad, no more school and Josh has been around a whole lot more-both are fantastic and quite a relief for me and I think for Dad as well.  BUT, all of the sudden, Dad only wants the men to help him with transfers and doesn't seem to want to count on me for much.  I guess he's trying to give me a break, but it hurts that he doesn't seem to trust that I can still do all of the things I've been doing for a couple of months now and even gets a bit snippy with me wanting to wait for Josh to move him around, when in fact Josh is looking to me for proper transfer "etiquette" and how best to go about doing whatever caregiving needs to be done.  I am so thankful to have more people around, I really shouldn't be complaining.

I stopped by Dad's this morning, to find him up and in his favorite recliner in and out of sleep.  The Home Care Aide and the Hospice Nurse were both coming this morning at 10am and I wanted to be there to hear what they had to say.  Dad, Anne and I talked for a while before they got there.  Anne said that in the middle of the night Dad was really agitated because he was uncomfortable and unable to move his feet by himself.  At this point he has trouble talking and is, at times, difficult to hear/understand, so the frustration only increases when we can't read his mind to do what would make him more comfortable/happy.  This becomes even more frustrating to someone when its a middle-of-the-night thing.  Ugh.  Dad is relatively pain-free except through the night, when he's lying down he says his side hurts under his right rib-cage.  Cancer.  That particular lung is mostly completely diminished and so that's where the pain shows up.  Thank God (or whoever) for left lungs!  The nurse suggested that we start using Morphine between the agitation and the pain just at night.  That will hopefully help him relax and rest more peacefully.

I called the crematorium today, a set up best to do before hand according to Hospice as they will take care of making the phone call for us when Dad does pass away.  The woman I spoke with was very sweet and explained how much easier it would be for everyone to go the direct route instead of a funeral home.  How screwed up is it that I'm talking to someone about this?!  After getting off the phone and dry heaving a little I was able to get it back together; Is it weird that I feel physically ill after that phone call?  Probably not.

Okay, so that's kind of it for now.  Please feel free to "share" this blog by passing on however you would like to people that would like to know.



  1. I have so much love in my heart and soul for you and your family. Your honesty is heart-breaking and somehow refreshing. I have gone through a similar process and have had similar feelings. Even though you barely know me, I am with you.

  2. You are amazing. Please know you are "allowed" to have all these very different and strange feelings...just try not to dwell on them...they will pass. Family and friends...the simple things in life. Hugs and love.

  3. One thing I learned from going through these things more times than I've ever wished; is that there is no manual, everyone responds differently. Simply doing what you think is best and trying to keep your spirits up as well as his and those around you does more than you can know at the time.

    Lili I love you and your entire family, let me know if there is anything I can do.

  4. Thanks for sharing what you are feeling and going through. I have been out of town and off the computer for a few days, so have not been able to keep up. Wil and your whole family have been in my thoughts and will continue to be.

  5. Lili,
    We lost my grandma last year due to a long battle with lung cancer and she was like a Mom to me. It was heartbreaking, but after having year to start to process all of the emotions that I was having, I am so thankful that we spent so much time together in the years before she died. You won't even remember that most frustrating moments at some point and the ones you do remember, you will be able to laugh at. I admire your strength and honesty. A lot of people would write and make it seem like everything is going great, but the truth is just what you said. It's hard...and frustrating...and most time it's a thankless job. (On behalf of you dad, family, and friends, Thank You!) You won't regret a minute of it. If there is anything I can do to help please let me know. You will be in my prayers.
    Brianna Walker

  6. Thank you.

    Love ya, Trisha

  7. Sending love and prayers for peace and strength everyday for you and your Dad. XOX Aunt Ceil

  8. Lili, thanks for telling it like it is. Now we
    realize how much more quickly things have changed
    than we realized ("I'm having trouble walking").
    We asked your dad about coming to see him a few
    weeks ago and he said things were really busy.
    And they were, with Michael & his fiance, and Bev and family coming. We hoped to travel to Athens when Wil let us know the time was right. And we will come if a short visit with your dad would be ok or if we can help you. If not, know that we love your dad - and you surely are a lot like him.
    Chuck & Rosie Caldwell (cell 765 427-1770)

  9. Lili - I just love this 'wallpaper'....what a beautiful trip to KW, paradise on earth, for you and Wil...your reality is a toughy, but you are handling it with the utmost grace - there is a book in you somewhere!

    You all are constantly in my thoughts....I appreciate the ability to 'check in' with you each morning...Love and hugs to you all....Dawn

  10. Greetings Lili,
    I just wanted to reach out to you and let you know that Jay and I are thinking of Will, you and your family.

    When I saw you Friday, I thought of how strong you are and I can only imagine what you and your family are feeling and going through.....

    But please know that not a moment goes by that WE don't wish for Will AND your Family many peaceful, easy, pain-free days ahead.

    You are and have shouldered a great stress with grace and style.

    When I grow up I want to be like YOU!!!

    Love you very much Lili,

    Take care of your Dad AND take care of you.

    Cherri and Jay

  11. Lili, hang in there and know your dad wants you there no matter what happens. I am keeping you and him in my thoughts every day. Erin

  12. Thanks so much for writing and keeping all of us informed. So many people love your Dad and your entire family. I've been hoping for a miracle and I'm so dismayed to learn that your Dad is fading. Your pain is palpable; please stay strong and take those much-needed breaks.

    Thanks again, Leeanna Morgan

  13. Lili, it's so hard for me to find the right words to say- I think you are incredibly strong and brave. I only met your dad a few times but I could tell right away what a warm person he is and what a strong & special bond the two of you have. I am so sorry that you are hurting. Thank you for sharing your blog and cherished memories with your dad. You and your family are in my thoughts and if there is anything at all that I can help you with please let me know. Love you guys...

  14. Dear Lili, Just to let you know I'm thinking of you. Love, Trisha

  15. Hi Lili - just catching up on some of your blogs. I will be gone visiting my parents this week from Tuesday - Saturday, but you call me or call the store if you need anything. Give your Dad a hug and kiss from me.