Thursday, October 18, 2012

It has become clear that I cannot remain in this house without a lot more assistance, and that I cannot afford. I die inwardly a little each time I think about leaving this house, where we were so happy for 18 years, until Di's fatal illness struck. I think of the magic years, as the grandchildren arrived, and were welcomed into this house, with love and eagerness.

I feel deep, deep sadness, and have nobody with whom I can discuss it. It is not that I cannot find an alternative. We have discussed my living with one of my sons, and that is a possibility, but some changes in their houses would have to be made, to accommodate my needs e.g. stair rails and bars in the showers, etc.

Each day I pray for some miracle that would allow me to spend the rest of my days here, among my memories. On the day I say farewell to this house I know I will be a huge mess! It is such a loving place, full of such wonderful memories.

Since I last wrote I have had back surgery, Laminectomy L4,5, spinal fusion, plus foramenotomy and microdiscectomy, with good effect. Now I am walking a mile twice a day, with Ella, and without that awful pain I had pre-op. What I do with Ella is another unsolved problem. She is such a loving little thing, though she has her difficulties. I wish I understood more of what goes on in that little head of hers.

Sunday, August 26, 2012

august 25th, 201 Pain is my middle name. It is particularly vicious pain  in my right buttock, and radiating down my right leg. I just could not manage at home and ended up here in KU Med Center. the neurosurgeon I had originally consulted would not admit me. But thanks to the humanity of an ER doctor I was admitted to a  medical service, for work up for fitness for anesthesia tomorrow I hoe to see a spinal orthopod who is highly recommended, and whom I will hope to ask to perform the necessary surgery. The original neurosurgeon  has all the empathy of a block of ice. I do not want him performing the surgery.

Thursday, August 2, 2012

A New Problem

Since my last post, I have been afflicted with a ruptured disc problem, with sciatic pain radiating down the back and side of my right leg, (L4 and 5),.The pain has been severe and disabling, and causes me great difficulty in walking and taking care of things around the house, including the dog, without pain. I have some pain pills but they make me "woozy", nauseate me slightly, and are very constipating. What a fine situation to be in!

Have been doing small work outs at the gym, stressing extension of my back, with  Latissimus dorsi pull downs, quadriceps and hamstring exercises, with some relief. On Monday, I will see a PT at the gym, and start on a formal 4 week PT program, to see if the pain can be lessened or improved.

This has been probably the most disabling "illness" of my life, and threatens my future in this home. More later.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Getting on for two years

It is January 12th, 2012.  The campaign for the Republican Presidential nomination is in full swing in South Carolina. What fun Di would have had watching all the hoopla. She was always very insightful about current affairs .Next Sunday, our new Dean begins his ministry, and hopefully the Cathedral community can heal after about 15 years of turbulence, from one cause or another. He is a very caring person,and,we hope, can bring the parish together, to keep up its work. Each Sunday the Deacon dismiss us with the instruction, "Go in peace to love and serve the Lord". It is our hope to do just that.

Next week I will have the first of, we hope, many meetings of a singles group within our development. Life is for the living! It is time to live a little after a period of sadness. Love to all, Geoff

Saturday, July 30, 2011

A grey Saturday morning

It is now15 months since Di left us. Accommodation to that loss becomes a little easier, but still I find ways in which I used to rely on her for advice or agreement. For instance, I have decided to replace the siding on the house. Before, I would have asked Di about color choices, at the very least for confirmation. Now I have to decide for myself, and I have been very nervous about  making a wrong choice. But, as the siding goes up I am becoming more happy with my color choice. It town sin very well with the colors of  surrounding houses and does not stand out like a "sore thumb".   Now for the painter to paint the trim. I want also to replace the fence with a 4 foot iron fence, also. The workers have been very good, working out there in this awful 100+ temperatures. They have been well looked after. I keep a cooler full of ice and drinks just inside the back door, They can come in and refresh themselves whenever they want,  with electrolyte containing fluids, in this dangerous heat.

Choosing a new Dean is a much more complicated task than I had imagined. Probably now is the time to keep the prayer of St. Francis of Assisi in mind, rather than trying to go on ego or power trips. Love to all. Geoff

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

The First Anniversary of DI's Death

The dreaded day has finally arrived.  I have concluded that it is a lot like a scheduled surgery date. the anticipation is a lot worse then the actual event. But it is ad ay to focus on the gift of love we all received from her - the giddy unquenchable love of youth, the steadfast giving love of early parenthood, the joyous, welcoming love of middle age and grandparenthood, the tender, companionate love of the later years. We remember your  courage, grace and nobility to the end, in the face of debilitating, fatal disease. We will all make it! Sooner or later, we will all feel joy in living again! For the moment, memories are still too fresh recent. A friend told me "You will know your grief work is done when ALL your memories are memories of celebration, rather than memories of sadness and loss".  Roll on that day!

I am determined to make this house and garden a beauty spot. You were so fond of the garden here, and together we made it.

You would be so sad to see your beloved Borders store shuttered by mismanagement, as are all your co-workers, there at the start up. Death and life are so commingled. "In the midst of life we are in death!"
Farewell, my love. We shall meet again. Love never dies!  Love, Geoff

Saturday, April 9, 2011

It's Saturday night

The Saturday night blues are with me again. The lilacs are ready to bloom again. That reminds me of last year when Di was in the nursing home, and could not see them. The one year anniversary is coming up fast. I believe it will be an EfM night. So, at least, I will not be alone.

Went to the COR Grief Support Group again the other night. A man was there whose wife had died very recently, after a long, long illness. When you go along for the first time and share your story, it always seems so bad, so awful and so unique. Nothing that bad could ever happen to someone else could it? One finds out rapidly that it can, and does. He, also, was experiencing the loneliness, and the loss of communication with his wife.

A middle aged friend told me recently that his wife had died suddenly at 36, when he was left with two young kids, now in college. He weathered all that, and now lives a very busy life, not remarried.  I am humbled by those experiences, and am full of admiration for the person who survives them. When the kids were young that was one thing I feared a lot. What would I do if Di had died suddenly? Fortunately we did not have to face that problem.

Inertia still has me in its grip and I do not have a lot of drive or interest. Bought some impatiens today to plant. Need to get that done before they die in the flat!  I pray for more energy and drive, so I can get things done in a timely manner. Always had a tendency to procrastinate, and achieved more against deadlines. But this is the worst I have ever been. Just listless and anergic.

Did put a lot of work in on my talk about "Understanding Diabetes", which seemed to go well. That kept me busy and feeling better. There have been a number of deaths in our development over the last two years. A former President of the Homeowners' Association here is dying. And the caring notes about him, from his family, bring back the exquisite agony of that last vigil.

But, I do consider myself a long way ahead of where I was last year, and feel that with the passage of another year I will be lots better still. The goal is to compartmentalize that past life with Di, in a safe place, where it can always be taken out and celebrated joyfully, but does not impinge so much on the present, where other business demands attention. Does that make sense? Love to all Dad/Geoff