Tuesday, December 30, 2008

Very Early Tuesday Morning

Whew! I am home. Flying standby at Christmas is an adventure! It took two and one-half days to make it to Salt Lake City. We landed Christmas morning at about 8:30 a.m. (their time) and it began to snow as soon as we got in the car. It then snowed 24 inches! Everybody thought I was nuts because I kept going out on the porch and standing in the blizzard, watching the beautiful snow flakes. It felt amazing. Going there was the absolute right thing to do. We left there this morning about 6:00 a.m., and after waiting all day in the Atlanta airport, were able to get on the last flight on the night back home. So, I am here - my dogs are so very happy. I must say they were very lovingly cared for in my absence by "Aunt Nancy." But I am getting an awful lot of slobbery kisses.

I thought about all of you on Christmas, when I had some quiet time. I spent some time by myself, looking out of the window at the majestic snow-covered mountains and felt God closer than ever. I had a long talk with him. I thanked him for all of you and I thanked him for the wonderful years I had with Mark.

It was very difficult to walk back in here tonight, not having that beautiful smiling face to greet me. I know in my heart that he went with me to Utah, though, so I am at peace.

My love to all of you. May 2009 be a good year for all of you. You remain in my heart everyday!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Friday Night

I am having a very rough night. My emotions have spilled over and I can't seem to stop crying. Friday nights were our special night of the week. I always got a call about 3:00 p.m., so we could decide what special thing I would bring home for dinner. Even when Mark was only doing Boost, we planned Friday nights and he would at least try to eat something. Tonight, I dragged myself home and just sat in the chair. I know I could pick up the phone and call a lot of different people. They would be here in a flash. But, I just can't do that. I am not sure how to handle this profound sense of loss tonight. It's therapeutic for me just to write this down and go back and read it. I know you will all understand. Mark was my best friend. We understood each other very well, and he always knew just what to say. He'd make his "little boy" face, make me smile and give me a hug. I miss him. I am having a great deal of trouble envisioning all the Friday nights to come. I know I'll learn to handle it, but right now, I am overwhelmed. My poor doggies aren't quite sure what to do. I have had many dog kisses tonight. They are trying to console me. So, I'm gonna give them all a special hug and a couple of extra cookies. They make me smile through the tears. Sorry if I am rambling, but working through this in this way will help me. My love to you all - tomorrow will be better. I am going to shop for a few warm clothes - I am going to Utah to see my granddaughter for Christmas. My gift from my sons and Becca is the trip to be with her. I'll let you all know how this almost Florida native does in the frigid weather. Hugs!

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

All My Thanks!

All of the warm wishes and condolences are so truly appreciated. I have decided that I will continue to blog for a while here, to let everybody know how very much I appreciate you. I have passed all of your messages on to Mark's family, and they too want to thank you for your support of me and all the love and support you gave to Mark. I wish there was a magical way to have all of you in a room somewhere, so I could meet you and give you all the hugs I have for you. Since that's not possible, these virtual hugs are headed your way. Again, each message makes my spirit soar. You are wonderful people. To each of you fighting your own personal battles, I pass along Mark's message: NEVER (EVER) GIVE UP! Rebecca

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

In Memory of Mark

Mark lost his fight this morning at 6:00 a.m. I wanted all of you to see just how happy he was on Saturday and how much his brother's visit meant to him. His twinkling eyes and beautiful smile will be among the fondest memories I have. I wanted all of you, his cyber family, to know how much you all meant to him. He loved posting and he loved reading all your comments.

Let me rest in the arms of slumber, for my open eyes are tired; Let the silver-stringed lyre quiver and soothe my spirit; Weave from the harp and lute a veil around my withering heart.

Dry your tears, my friends, and raise your heads as the flowers raise their crowns to greet the dawn. Look at the bride of death standing like a column of light etween my bed and the infinite; Hold your breath and listen with me to the beckoning rustle of Her white wings.

The songs of the waves and the hymns of the streamsAre scattered, and the voices of the throngs reduced to silence;And I can hear naught but the music of eternityiIn exact harmony with the spirit's desires.I am cloaked in full whiteness;I am in comfort; I am in peace.
Kahlil Gibran

He slipped into sleep and his pain is gone. For that, I am grateful. I love him with all my heart and I will miss him so.

My love to all of you,


Monday, December 8, 2008

Monday Night

I am back home for a while, after spending the day at Mark's bedside. He is fighting as hard as he can, but his body is beginning to shut down. He is still running a very high temperature, and he has not been conscious since we to0k him there yesterday. He is resting comfortably, and the wonderful nurses and doctors at hospice have assured me that I have done the right thing. He feels no pain. I am taking care of our doggies and kitty. I am going to try to sleep a little, but will be leaving here to go back to his side. I love him so, and I want him to know I am with him. I have talked to him all day, stroked his face and held his hand. I know he is at peace. I will up-date you tomorrow sometime. Our love to all of you!

Monday Morning

Late yesterday afternoon, Mark had to be transported back to hospice. He is slipping in and out of consciousness and at one point yesterday, really didn't know who any of us were. He is running a high fever and when awake, is highly agitated and restless. The visiting nurse thought this was best, especially since every time he woke, he wanted to try to get up and walk. I simply could not handle him physically. Even with his brother and cousin, it was all we could do to help him sit up and then, he would go out again and we'd lay him back on the bed.

I will keep posting with whatever news I get. I'm on my way there and I plan to spend most of the day. Please kick the prayers into high gear. I am putting this in God's hands.

I love you all.


Saturday, December 6, 2008

Saturday Night

Today was a good day. Mark , Jerry (his brother) and Joann (Jerry's wife) had a wonderful visit. While I tended to things in the kitchen, I heard them remembering and laughing. It did my heart good to hear that. Mark is very weak and very unstable, but the 24-hour nursing has been pulled, as he is no longer considered to be "in crisis." So it's just us - our little family of four dogs, one cat and two humans. Mark's regular assigned nurse, Marie, has told me that he now can not be left alone. I am in a very bad dilemma. I can not afford to leave my job to stay home with him and I just don't know what to do. He understands the need, but is fiercely independent and still reluctant to take any precautionary steps other than a now more frequent use of the wheelchair. Everyone's greatest fear is continued falls, because while he hasn't been seriously injured so far, we certainly have no guarantees about any future falls. I'm going to contact his social worker, Josie, to see if she has any suggestions. She is the one I turn to for resources.

We also had a lovely visit from my son James and his friend, Nicole. They brought down food they had prepared for me, knowing we had company this weekend. What thoughtful, loving children! James didn't feel too well. He thinks he may have had some undercooked food at dinner last night and he felt nauseous, but he came anyway.

Tomorrow, Jerry and Joann will be back and we will be joined by Steve (Mark's cousin who was here for Thanksgiving) and his beautiful wife. It will be another wonderful day I am sure. I am going to prepare dinner for everybody. I have planned a pot roast with carrots, potatoes and mushrooms, and the baked ziti that James and Nicole brought. We'll all gain about 10 pounds!

We send our love out to our growing cyber family. How wonderful to see each and every one of you. I'll keep you posted and Mark will contribute as he has the strength. NEVER GIVE UP!

Friday, December 5, 2008

A friend on line sent me this video.
I hope all you old farts enjoy it.

Paul McCartney
Phil Collins
Eric Clapton
Bob Dylan
George Harrison Son
among others...

I took another fall last after noon. My blood pressure went down to 80/50. Now I have a nurse with me 24/7. She watches me like a hawk.
My brother will be here on the 6th. (Saturday.) I'm looking forward to that!
Now you are all up to date.

TO JEN: Thank you for so many new friends! You are unbelievable!
Peace and Love to all..... Mark

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Thursday Night Up-date

God is good. Mark is actually sitting up, watching tv with his nurse right now. The concensus of opinion is that he had some swelling in the area of the tumor that was causing the problems this morning, and the swelling has gone down. He walked (with help) into the bathroom and then ran us out. He isn't interested in eating but did have a couple of Boosts. So, unless something changes again, the nurses will only stay for 24 hours and then they will decided if they are still needed. Thanks for the prayers!!!!!

Thursday Evening

Today has been a very long, difficult day. We have had to bring in the Hospice Crisis Care Unit. Mark is deteriorating and is now primarily bedfast. This happened very quickly. He had a fall again last night (at about 3:00 a.m) but was able to get himself up and into the bed. He is not able to do that now. He has a lot of pain in his back and hips. We are not completely certain he didn't damage something, but he does not want to go back to the hospice facility. I had no choice but to call in the 24-hour help, as I can't help him by myself. He is unable to sit up unassisted, or to drink, take his meds or much of anything else. He has rested relatively comfortably today, but is heavily medicated. We are going to watch over the next couple of days for signs of improvement. Please pray with me that he improves. The nurses are wonderful, patient and kind. We are doing everything we can. I love you all and Mark sends his love too! PLEASE, NEVER GIVE UP!

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Tuesday Evening

You may have noticed no posts from Mark for a couple of days. The excitement and joy of Thanksgiving wore him out. He has been very weak and tired for the past few days. Unfortunately, he has fallen twice and while nothing is broken, it's still taking a toll on him. He is conserving his strength for this weekend's visit with his brother. Each little goal to us is a huge goal to him. I applaud each day as a victory. I'm sure he'll be back here tomorrow or Thursday with his own up-date, but I wanted to fill everybody in. Keep remembering us in your prayers. We love you all!