December 3, 2016

The middle of the story

I once heard that when a blogger stops blogging it’s like an author abruptly stopping in the middle of a story. There will always be the question of "how did it end?" And although I've not come to the end of my own story by a long shot, after being absent for a while I want to give you a shortened version of where my family has been in recent months and years, and where we are currently.

2012: We found out a few days before Christmas of 2011 that my stepmom's ("mom") breast cancer (2009) had metastasized... it had returned to affect Mom & Dad c. 2002 every bone in her body and was quickly progressing to her eyes, brain, and other parts of her system. She was given 2-4 months, but she barely lasted two, dying on February 20, 2012. She was the "mom" I didn't have growing up as my mama had died (obituary) when I was 14 years old in 1971, also of metastasized breast cancer. So my dad put two wives in the ground from metastatic (stage IV) breast cancer. Daddy pretty much pined away for mom after that (they'd been married for 26 years), dying a few months later on August 17, 2012 after his third stroke (obituary - they made several typos). Even 4 years later, I find myself wanting to pick up the phone and call my dad, to go over to their house and work in the yard and garden for them, or do genealogy and attend symphonies with mom. There are some days that the loneliness of being without parents is an ache in my heart that seems will never go away. (Photo: Mom and Dad about 2002.)

2013: On November 5, my oldest son, Jeff (obituary), was killed on the job. His brother - my other son - worked at the same company and saw it happen. I cannot even begin to describe how traumatic and devastating this has been for our family. Jeff left behind a wife, a son, and two daughters.

2014: I just don't remember much of anything for this year. Neither does anyone else. The grief and shock we were dealing with was an overwhelming entity.

2015: In April, we made the decision to move my sweet husband, Jerry, into a nursing home permanently. Most of our marriage (since 1995) has been spent with me as his caregiver. He has numerous medical issues (many of which continue to worsen as time goes by), and with my being 5 years older than him (I will be 60 in January 2017), my own health issues were being directly affected and becoming worse from the increasing stress of caring for him.

2016: The nursing home where Jerry resided - the one we had planned would be his home the rest of his life - announced in July it was closing. We had a terrible time trying to find another facility for him, made doubly stressful because another nursing home in our city also closed its doors. In August I finally found a spot for him, but ended up having to move him out-of-town in the next county. For three months I traveled back and forth, taking him to and fro to doctors appointments, a surgery, barely scraping by on what little I had so I could have enough gas for the car to get over there and back. Finally, just last month on November 1, I was able to get him back to our city into a local facility. Also in July, daughter-in-law (Jeff's widow) had brain surgery; she was diagnosed a few months prior with Chiari Malformation; it's been a long road, but she's doing much better and her recent MRI shows everything to be great!

There is a lot more detail to the past several years, but that can be saved for another time. It's been hard, yes, but if not for my faith in God, if not for my diligence in seeking Him first in all things, I would not have been able to handle all of this. I've always had a very close relationship with the Lord, but in these past few years I've learned so much more about myself and the Saviour. He has really filled my heart with new understanding.

"The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in Him, and He helps me. My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise Him." {Psalm 28:7}
Until next time!

3 comments:

  1. I'm here my friend. I am so sorry for all of the loss and trauma you've experienced over the last several years. I cannot imagine. But I am thankful you are going to be writing again. I believe you will have much encouragement and comfort to offer to others. Blessings!

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  2. Oh goodness lady, that is a long road of sorrow and hardship. So glad that you have a relationship with the Lord and that you were hopefully able to lean on Him during these struggles. xoxo

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  3. Hello! I just happen to run across your blog this morning. Oh my, you have suffered so much in the last several years yet I find such a sweet attitude in the midst of your writing. God's grace is shining through. I look forward to reading your posts. May God bless you.

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Your visit means so much to me. Oh YES it does! Have a blessed day!