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  1. Today
  2. kayc

    Memories of Kitty

    When she came to my house, there was twine hanging out her belly. I knew someone had crudely “fixed her,” no self-respecting vet would ever do a job like that! I clipped the twine and shuddered to think how it went down. Did they ply her with alcohol? How had she survived?!
  3. kayc

    Memories of Arlie

    I had given him his last walk down the street…all of the neighborhood dogs coming to the street to greet him as we went by, as if they were saluting him goodbye. I prepared him a special breakfast of scrambled eggs and cheese and mushrooms with his Colitis diet of rice, chicken breast and pumpkin. He gobbled it down. We drove to the vet, one he hadn’t met before, they were so wonderful to him. He weighed in at 107.5 due to all the treats I’d plied him with during his illness. Probably the only dog with cancer to actually gain weight…most of the time he ate to please me.
  4. I am thankful I have the best puppy in the world. Middle of the night I woke up with a bad headache, awake for a long time with it, it did not want to abate. Finally dropped off to sleep and woke up 15 min. later than I usually get Kodie up. He never peeped. I appreciate that, most puppies are not like that. A pancake thin pillow sounds hardly worth the bother. Why don't they have down pillows you can fluff up? We had an unpredicted wind storm yesterday afternoon/evening. More limbs to pick up. So glad it didn't snow very much!
  5. I am so sorry, Courtney. It's hard enough grieving the loss of your mom, but your cousin too, needing to find a place for yourself and all the stress that entails while going to school, and lack of familial support...that is a lot on your plate. You will get through this, one day at a time, sometimes one minute at a time. Don't hesitate to come back here close to the holidays, it's something we all go through together, yes, loss of someone important to us changes a lot for our lives. https://www.griefhealingblog.com/2016/04/in-grief-coping-with-multiple-losses.html
  6. I still use that term, but "jumping" out of bed is hardly what I do. (At 77, I doubt if that is really what any of us do.) I do manage to crawl around until I grab a lid of one of the boxes I have piled in my room, pull myself up. Know that standing is going to hurt like hell, do a few of my own calisthenics, and manage to slip my feet in the slippers. I think the radiation honeycombed my hip bones. But, I had trouble with this back when Billy was with me also. Legs hurt, I wear diabetic socks that pull up to my knees, I am not limber enough to put on the compression hose. Never have understood them anyhow. I have had many, many pairs of them, they always manage to put a crease at my ankles and sorta cut off blood supply, so these diabetic socks (I am not diabetic) compress just a small bit, any creases do not stop blood supply and are so soft I will sleep in them when my feet are "bone cold" and that does happen. I sleep on probably six pillows (scattered around) (along with my Billy clothes stuffed pillow), but keep it to the side. Billy slept on a pancake pillow. Mine are large and fluffy. I almost sleep sitting up. I like that. And, these are not the "golden years" promised (maybe not promised, but the name they use.) Mine are as rusty as an old iron faucet. So far I can control the faucet almost to the point that when it tells me to "go" then I do not need to forget it. Oh, who can forget the shout that says "go right now." I cannot compare my aches and pains to yours because they have been going on for so long, I just know about them. My cousins and I, when we email now, one or the other has been in the hospital with some bone surgery (my sweet cousin inherited her grandmother's crippling arthritis, and she has about eight young grandchildren she runs to the bus stop and keeps until the parents get home, (she started children later than I did and has very young grandchildren). Her husband just had aortic valve replacement and is so much better at 80 than he has been for a few years. My other cousin, (lots of cousins) is a year older. They cannot figure out why she keeps having the painful kidney stones and UTI's. (Even with two doctor sons that have urology and nephrology friends.) Her husband has Parkinson's disease and the arthritis, like his dad, that makes life very painful, and a pacemaker. They use good batteries I guess because the gardener follows him around to pick him up when he falls in these Michigan winters. He falls a lot. Had to get him a bed close to the floor. They are all age 77 to age 81. No golden years, only rust years. I know you would not be happy with someone living with you, if by some miracle of fate, some old friend of Steve's, someone that would pick up after themselves, etc. Oh forget that, I am a slob and do not think anyone but Brianna could live with me. My heart is with you my friend. My doc.........wait, I don't have one except when I want my Xanax refilled. They still do that in my old town I lived in with Billy. The rest of them, even with my essential tremor, they would not keep me supplied with Xanax. I told Heather (my nurse practitioner) that I never abuse a prescription and she said, "oh we know that." So, I am sure mine is monitored. What the hell, quantity of life or quality of life. I told them I was not going to stop them. I am so used to them now that it is more stubbornness that makes me get them than anything, oh that and I like to sleep at night. Fixing to have my only cup of coffee, and if I drink an Ensure (I do like those things), I forget about my coffee, the last ritual Billy and I shared. I did find my psychiatrist very useful many years ago, but she is retired now. With a diagnosis of chronic depression, kind of like the pain, it becomes a worrisome thing that I tried to talk to two different denomination pastors, but I got so tired of telling my life to these people I am paying to listen, and if they gave me a med, it would kill me. So, you all are stuck with my word salads, for awhile. I find I need my Xanax at night. Why is it we are so fearful of night time? I read a lot (concentration comes and goes), but the fear of sleep will always be there and that is probably a fear of not waking up, which I would only think I don't want my granddaughter to find me that way.
  7. I had to use 6 rehab pillows at night to sleep for my old bones. If anyone has been hospitalized, you know they are like pancakes and plastic so the pillowcases slip off. You don’t want to move because you have to start all over again. Why they put white blinds up I’ll never understand. Had to get a sleep mask. You can jump out of bed, Dee? I’m still crawling. 🤪
  8. I am 23 years old. It has been 3 months since my mom passed from cancer. She was 56.. November 25th my cousin accidentally OD on heroin, 21 year old... Then November 29th my mom died. The family is torn apart. My mom first got cancer when I was 2 years old. It came back four times until it was metastasized. Now I have to afford a house, car, pets, while going to school and working as an aid at a hospital. Lately I have lost a sense of who I am. I have always been my moms caregiver. My father is not in the picture, he would rather drink and do drugs than help his only daughter.. My mom was my purpose, now I need to find my purpose. Memories flood, not just memories of my mom but also my cousin. Thanksgiving is never the same. I am isolated from the family because we are all grieving in our own ways, and I probably remind them of my mom so maybe that’s why they are so distant.
  9. Gwen: Oboy do I hear you. Golden years is now a four letter word as far as I am concerned . My MIL used to refer to it as the "Rusty Years". I had to chuckle as you described all the pillows to make sure the old bones don't ache if we should actually fall asleep. I sometimes wonder should I have to jump out of bed in a hurry I wouldn't be able to untangle myself from the pillows in time. Keeping you in my thoughts as you get through each day. Sounds like you did make it today. Hugs, Dee
  10. MThanks everyone. It hits me everyday the rituals to get going and throughout the day that never existed before. I just got up, got dressed and went on with my day. Now it’s compression socks, knee supports, meds,etc. Undressing is getting that stuff off, a pain pill, aspercreme and whatever chores before I can sit down from the pain. Going to sleep? Oh! The rituals with pillows so bones aren’t touching and hips positioned for the least impact of hours of inactivity. Where did simplicity go? Bending over, hard vs. soft chairs, getting in and out of the car. Bringing things in the house now including portable oxygen that has to be recharged. Walkers in the house with the oxygen generator. Pill bottles galore. I’m suddenly old it feels. My mind forgets or hopes when I stand up it won’t hurt. Filling pill boxes for the week really brings home the feeling of being a part of the invisible generation. Having to ask for help on what were simple tasks sucks. The worst? Showers that felt good, not an exercise in preparing for possible falls and what I consider a PT session and the aides say it is. I’m really turning into that 'get off my lawn' person from frustration. Golden years. Whoever thought of that saying should be shot! 🤨
  11. Yesterday
  12. I hear and understand your grief, loneliness, and pain. My emotions at times are my worst enemies. You continue to be daily in my thoughts and prayers. Growing older (aging this year) seems to have hit me harder because of Hospitalization, Insurance issues, billing, collections, Current physical ailments, uncertainty of medications and treatments, etc... I can easily spiral down with certain thoughts and feelings. Praying you will have brighter days! - Shalom (Peace)
  13. Mark, I am so sorry...how hard to face another loss so soon. I do believe it was meant to be that the two of you shared that phone conversation, you have that to cherish always with his memory. I, like you, believe they are together and hope you can find some comfort in that.
  14. Chris, I'm sorry you find yourself in this situation as you sound like a very caring supportive person that doesn't deserve this. But be that as it may, if you're looking for a way to get her back, I hate to tell you but that's not likely going to happen. There's a certain number of people that break off their relationships when they encounter grief. The rest of us want someone being there for us, being supportive, but for whatever reason, the others don't want that. They feel being in a relationship is too stressful and they can't do a relationship and grieve at the same time. And no it's not likely that time will help the situation. For some they feel guilty for what they gave to the relationship instead of the parent that died. Rationale need not enter in, this is emotion based. They can be with their friends, etc. but not with you. Of the hundreds who have written threads about this very thing here, I only remember maybe one who made it through intact. I was one who lost my fiance of a year when his mom was dying. It's been almost ten years ago and he currently has his XW living with him, not romantically involved but because he didn't want her homeless. It takes time with no contact to begin to heal and to get clarity on this. I hope you will consider doing that for your sake; also out of respect for her wishes. It's not likely to change given any amount of time, I'm sorry.
  15. I definitely have gained a huge empathy now that I have experienced what I only observed before. I was never unsympathetic, but I knew I could get up and walk away without pain, didn’t feel the stranglehold of depression, didn’t need oxygen strapped to my face to survive. Even seeing that in others I thought it could never happen to me. When it did I felt targeted, like I was somehow more special than others. I’ve certainly been humbled from that kind of thinking. Selfishly, I want to go back. Who wouldn’t want to leave all this inner and outer pain? But since that isn’t an option, I can try and use the understanding I now have. The thing I have to be careful about is comparison. I am worse than some,better than others, tho I can’t think of who beyond residents at the nursing home. Mentally I don’t know anyone as low as I am. I called a crisis help line yesterday because I had no one to talk to I felt would understand. I have my counselors, but I needed someone immediately. This is a daily thing and having had the 5 week time to interact with others when I was in facilities showed me how alone my existence is that I never saw before. It was another 'why me?' experience. One very not needed to keep walking this road alone. I don’t see a future that has any pluses. I know people older than me living alone, but they have people of great importance in their lives to fuel them. I do the solitary things they do like taxes, but I’m not sorting pictures to pass along or planning get togethers to refill my souls well. Don’t have anyone that truly knows me to contemplate my future options as I lose more abilities. There is a part of me that will never forgive Steve for leaving me. It’s a taboo thing to say, but I feel it. He didn’t choose it, but emotions aren’t logical. I get so angry that he can’t help me with the double load of responsibilities I have now. I get angry with the dogs for stepping on my oxygen tubing. I take it way too personally if someone cancels dropping by which is rare anyone does. His death was like a trial and I lost. Convicted and serving my sentence. And I say, honestly, I am innocent. To not sound totally embittered, I know Steve did not want this to happen. He would totally understand my anger, sadness and feeling I can’t go on without him. He wouldn’t be telling me there is purpose, a higher meaning or something I was meant to accomplish. He knew this was a losing roll of the dice with nature, nothing more. He stood trial and lost too. Is he in a better place or exist at all, I don’t know. All I know is it’s over for him and I envy him that. He told me he would not want to be the one left behind. He knew this would be hell and said he wouldn’t be far behind me. Knowing him, it would have been true. Maybe we just loved each other too much. No, no maybe, we did. I loved our deep relationship but perhaps a more conventional one would have been easier. I know some widows that have gone on tho they do have friend and family connections. Mine dried up. The first year I was saved by mine. They are gone now. It wouldn’t be enough now. After 5 years and who knows how many more, only he will do. I knew I couldn’t count on others but I never thought he’d be the one to cause me pain I never knew existed. Yet I love him more everyday. It’s counterproductive but the way it is.
  16. What a tragic loss so close to Susie's and your just having spoken to him. My thoughts are with you as you have to face another void in your heart.
  17. Hi all, I was hoping someone can give me some advice on this. I was finished by my girlfriend of almost 6 years due to 2 issues. The first one being her mental health problems which i didnt fully understand, and how to support due to my relationship inexperience as i just gave her space as i thought thats what she wanted? but i kept checking on her and she had a go at me for not helping properly yet she didnt sit me down and tell me everything properly, she just went upstairs and i thought she was just having bad times at work as thats what she said to me, we got through this as i managed to take her to Florida for her 30th Birthday. The second issue was she tragically found her dad passed away after finishing at work, she found him which is unthinkable for anyone. So i rush home to be with her after i got the phone call from her when i was at work. She was in a right state, and i had to support her with the tears, i was cradling her in my arms telling her how much i loved her and she was on medication to help her sleep due to night terrors, and i was on standby to help her when the tears started, and cradled her again and again for weeks on end. I went to the funeral with her and held her hand in the funeral car, and provided as much support as i could to the family as they meant the absolute universe to me. So the funeral gets completed, and when we would lie in bed she would tell me please dont die i love you so much, and she was doing things like checking my pulse etc, and i was so worried about her mentally, i just didnt know what to do but told her im here for her. Then her mum came back home due to a breakup, and our relationship became even harder, and we couldnt spend time together, and i suggested center parcs for us to spend time together, but she refused point blank. She then told me that her friends were going to Dubai and asked me if she could go, and i couldnt say no as god knows what would have happened. Then we went to her cousins wedding, but my head was a mess after everything that had happened, and at the wedding a huge arguement erupted with her family, and she comes to me crying her eyes out, saying everything reminded her of her dad, so i calmed her down. When we got back to the hotel room, there was arguements again in her family, and what was running through my head was would full intimacy had helped her? as i really didnt know what to do, so we did something different, and when done she was lay on me saying its so hard, and she then took a tablet to help her sleep. When she went to Dubai, she text me stating that she liked being on her own, and i thought to myself is this just space she was enjoying? when she came back i was so happy to see her and hold her again but she was super angry, and i just didnt know what to do, we got in bed and tried to cuddle but she wouldnt let me near her. Then before my birthday on Nov 2, she said we should break up, but i managed to bring her round, telling her how much i love her and how much she meant to me. Then we broke up on Nov 9, she woke me up from a nap and basically said she was sick of being miserable, and mentioned when i was poorly at a friends wedding due to having acid reflux issues and the medication i was taking was making me vomit, so i was made homeless practically, couch surfing for 2 weeks whilst i found somewhere to live, I was devastated beyond belief to lose her. I got a text from her Xmas day 2019 saying i know your angry at me just making sure you had a nice day xx which i did not answer, then i text her NYE as i was so miserable and heartbroken and she just told me to move on and forget her. Have i done anything wrong here or does she just need time on her own for a while? Thanks Chris
  18. Mark: So sorry to read you have had to suffer another loss so soon after losing your Susie. Keeping you in my thoughts. Dee
  19. I have always said that you cannot minister to people unless your feet have been raked through the coals. Your's have Kieron, and I think this makes you an exceptional caregiver. You understand in the only way that can offer pure empathy and not just sympathy and knowledge from a book. Angels like you will get your wings someday. Thank you.
  20. Oh Mark. I am so very sorry to learn this tragic news. My heart just hurts for you. How amazing that the two of you connected in such a meaningful way before this happened. I too believe with all my heart that your Susie and Andy, your brother in love, are together now and watching over you . . . ♥️
  21. This reminds me of something rattling around in my head. maybe it's because it's my work performance anniversary/review time and I am conscious of "where I'm at" in life and wondering whether I want to keep doing this and wondering where I want to go from here. One thing I notice in my day-to-day job (ie something like a public health nurse/case manager) which requires weekly home visits with folks who are struggling with depression (or other mental health condition) and the ripple-effect on their lives (like just getting the simplest thing done such as keeping their health insurance active so they don't fall through the cracks). That observation rattling around in my head is this: As I go through my own "stuff" in my personal life, more and more I am able to relate to them and their struggles, feelings, overwhelm etc. and can then approach it from a standpoint of real understanding and support. Many of my co-workers are younger folks fresh out of college. As the old work-horse of the bunch, I'm able to give them a reality check if it seems warranted. Disclaimer: the following paragraph is not directed at anyone, doesn't refer to anyone, and is a very general observation of *some* apparent scenarios from 14 years of doing this kind of work. I notice some educated professionals tend not to have a personal or deep understanding of their own patients' struggles. Young, mobile, tanned and super-healthy doctors telling patients to eat right, exercise... slim, snappy-dressed and glowing dietitians talking about diet and weight loss... peppy and energetic therapists/counselors telling patients about mood and depression.... cheerful, enthusiastic and well-educated psychiatrists prescribing medications they themselves would never condescend to swallow... fresh-faced case managers telling clients how to feel better and get stuff done in life, when just picking up the phone to make a necessary call saps the energy right out of the client. The paradoxes in the above are just striking, you know what I mean?... I think some of this is influenced by what my own clients have told me. But i think I can safely say that I sort of "get" where my own clients are coming from, in ways that perhaps my own peers don't or can't. It simultaneously makes my job easier and harder. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
  22. I didn't mention this before, but already being overwhelmed with the loss of Susie, the family suffered another tragic loss. I had Susie's phone and about 4 days after Susie passed, her brother Andy called it after I had gone to bed. The next morning, on January 21st, I checked her phone as I do daily, since I don't have the heart to cut it off yet. I found the missed call and a voicemail from her little brother Andy. He simply said "Hello?". I called him a little later that day and he told me that he wasn't sure who had her phone, but was delighted to hear my voice. We talked for about 45 minutes and had a wonderful conversation. We talked about Susie, our faith, that she had gone to be with the Lord and how much was look forward to seeing her again someday. I told him that I considered him to be my brother. He told me the same and confided in me that I had treated him better than his own brother, which touched me deeply. His brother had gone down a bad path and is pretty much a pariah to the family. He told me to call anytime and I said the same. I told him I loved him and he replied in like. On the evening of February 14th, Valentine's Day, his older daughter found Andy in his home, unresponsive. He had passed away at the age of only 56. Andy didn't do drugs, or drink, but he did have COPD and I'm guessing he suffered heart failure. Yesterday I went to his funeral and the combination of the loss of Susie and Andy was devastating. It left everyone shell shocked and at a loss to explain how two such wonderful people could be taken from us so close together. Andy was a Deacon at his church and highly regarded as a Godly man. I believe that he and Susie are together again and I am trying to maintain my composure in recovering. God speed brother Andy!
  23. I loved that! I had to give Kodie dewormer a couple of days ago, made him really sick, he vomited throughout the day. Called the vet in the afternoon, they said to give him rice and cottage cheese. I don't normally have cottage cheese but thankfully had some. I thought I had cooked white rice in the freezer but it turned out to be chopped onions, finally found a tiny bit in a tupperware container I'd missed throwing out so made that up for him. Guess I'll have to buy some for when he's sick. Esp. since I'm so far from everything and can't drive at night, it makes emergency runs difficult. My neighbors said they have some in survival kits if I ever need some again. You know, another moot point if George were alive, he'd be glad to make a run for me.
  24. Gwen: Good to hear the appointment with your shrink was bearable and you survived the drive to and from his office. I can imagine you are relieved the medication was refilled. My today turned out to be an adventure in spite of my almost cancelling out. Maddie had me up three times last night plus having to get up for myself once, I was dragging. My son picked me up and we went to my 8 year old granddaughter's basketball game. Holy Moly, have not been around such commotion and noise for ages. The game didn't last very long, and once home again I was glad I didn't cancel. I think it did me good to be around a mob of people again. That's the human contact you're talking about, Gwen. I learned firsthand how an old lady with a cane demands preference. I haven't taken my cane out before but since I wasn't sure of the terrain, and my knees are weakening, I thought it best to bring it with. People actually stepped aside and/or held the door for me. I guess I learned there is something positive about getting old. LOL And now, I am babbling, too. Take care. Dee
  25. Last week
  26. Hey, we have mountains here, I live in them...something in Oregon for everybody...ocean, desert, flat farmlands, you name it! My sister has COPD real bad too, I'm glad she's finally back on her inhaler!
  27. Gwen, I pulled up a map of Seattle. I learned to love the west, but never got any further than Northern California and then headed southeast back to the desert country. (and mountains). I think I would be very confused with all the islands around you. It has got to be a humid as it is in the south. Humidity does not help my sister's COPD. And, she has an upstairs apartment (her choice). She said climbing stairs was one thing they had her do in rehab. She chain smokes thinking the COPD will possibly keep her from having Alzheimer's, or rather using it as a quicker exit than Mama took. Mama smoked, but she could make a pack last her two days. They are so expensive here in Louisiana. I worry, but I worry about my kids, my grandkids, and I guess that way I don't worry about me. Nothing they can do for me and chronic depression has followed me around since my teen years, so if you can get used to such a thing, I guess I am acclimated to worrying, though that was one thing that aggravated Billy. He does not have to worry with it anymore though. Hang in there my friend, obviously we are here for some reason. Heart with you, as usual.
  28. Sometimes you need to know someone is listening and cares...we're here fore you.
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