Tonight as I write I can barely see the screen through tear filled swollen eyes, and I feel lost. Lost like a buoy adrift in a large open ocean, where I have forgotten my purpose and simply exist. That anchor to which I have been tied for so long still lays where it always has, but I am the weak one.
My sweet brother is so physically weak tonight. I helped him to his bed as he leaned on me for support, and with the other hand grabbed a hold of anything solid. He was shaking and pale, and breathing shallow. And then he asked that I bring him a plastic container from the chest of drawers and to call Lauren in to him. She came and sat by his side and he gave her a gift, and when he couldn’t hold himself up in a sitting position any longer I lay him down, his head on my arm, and he continued to show her some little things in his hands. A beautiful and meaningful exchange between father and daughter.
What is it that you or I will be holding precious as we begin our journey’s end, and who would you want to share it with? Those things…that stuff that seems so valuable now will mean nothing then. The anger felt and grudges held will be emotion, energy and time that was wasted, and we will wish we had used it instead for ‘I love you’s” and ‘how can help you.’
Jan hardly ate today as everything made him nauseous, including the smell of food. Fruit salad seems to be all he can tolerate. He wears 2 Fentanyl patches for pain, and every 4 hours I give him hydrocodone and ibuprofen, and as long as I can get that into him his pain stays at bay. This evening our Hospice Angel nurse had a different nausea med delivered for him to try.
Tomorrow morning I will load him in the car, along with the rest of the family, and we will drive to Utah for his son’s wedding. Their plan was to marry in December, but they changed plans so Jan can be there. We have spent all day making flowers from fondant for the wedding cake.
My entire focus will continue to be to take care of all Jan’s needs. I will keep him comfortable, catch him when he falls, and kiss his head. I will tell him how much I love him, and I will comfort our beautiful mother, who has been tried beyond what many could not endure.
Be good to yourself. Be good to those around you. Love unconditionally and completely, and forgive. Notice the sunset, lay on the grass and admire the blueness of the sky as you breath deep the fresh air into your healthy lungs. Feel gratitude and express it. After all, what else matters.