About Me

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Four years into widowhood, after one year of incredible happiness and nearly 14 years of single blessedness. Have given up perfect manicures and pretty hands in order to resume playing the soprano recorder and to see if I can figure out how to play bluegrass banjo. Singing in the shower. Still really, *really* love to knit!

Tuesday, January 15, 2013

And ... he’s gone.

When I began this post, it was a quarter past ten. Our first (and last) anniversary was filled with adventures.

The intake person was lovely, warm, and immensely helpful. Everything is 100% covered. I hoped that Beloved was basically OK, but he threw up the half-bottle of Ensure I gave him yesterday morning and had eaten nothing else since then. She told me not to worry about that, that he would eat when he was hungry and it would be more of a strain to force him to eat.

The twins were here, and 1BDH, and three brethren from our ward’s elders quorum (elders in our church can be as young as 18, which makes them not particularly elderly elders), and later another friend and his teenage son, plus three Relief Society sisters who cleaned both bathrooms and the kitchen. This was in order to make room for the hospital equipment.

The guys mucked out the dining room. I vacuumed most of it. Everything, including the very long church pew which normally occupies the eastern wall of the dining room, is stacked neatly in the garage. The genealogical stuff which the siblings will take or send home to California, is clumped together for easy accessibility. I managed to rescue a large box full of my stuff (including the yarn for StellaLuna), and it is safely here in our bedroom. The Legos and boxes of toys have all gone to the Beloved-grandchildren’s house.

The cat was indignant that his hiding places in the dining room had vanished. He curled up in a corner of the bedroom for awhile, and I planned to oust him once I went to bed.

The tech set up the hospital bed, showed me how to run the oxygen tank (not sure if Beloved was needing it, but he was making funny noises, so I called for a nurse to come by and check on him when she finished attending to her current patient. We have a potty chair and a shower chair a big oxygen tank and an emergency oxygen tank, and no rolling table, although more were on order, with a considerable waiting list. I made the bed. There is an inflatable mattress pad with chambers that emptied and filled alternately; it is designed to prevent bedsores. I remembered to turn it off a few minutes ago.

I think the updated paperwork is just about ready to go to Salt Lake. The former spouses were asked to give updated statements. The children’s father told Secondborn to just update the old letter (it might have an electronic signature?). Bishop has also spoken with FirstHubby. At this point, getting some uninterrupted sleep is a far greater priority than being sealed to Beloved. The spirit is indeed willing, but the flesh is plumb tuckered out.

I had asked Younger Twin to accompany me to the funeral home, but Beloved threw up just before YT got there, so I asked him to stay with his dad, and I made the drive on my own. So impressed with that place, other than the lovely rolling chairs in the meeting room. I didn’t know they rolled (I was simply shown into the room by the receptionist), and when I lowered myself into one, it scooted out from under me and ricocheted across the room BAM! into a credenza, while I went down in stages: tush, then back, then elbow, then shoulders, legs flailing in the air like an upended turtle.

Just as well that YT was not there to witness, but once I caught my breath and rubbed my elbow, I had to laugh a little. The director came in a couple minutes later and was both horrified and apologetic when I told him. No real harm done: I had YT put a couple of bags of frozen peas across my back and then I lay sunny side down for 20 minutes. I didn’t ice my elbow, and I suspect it will be bruised and stiff in the morning. [It’s spectacularly bruised. We’ll see how stiff it is when I wake up.] As I was walking back to the kitchen with the thawing peas, I warbled to YT, “Let there be peas on earth, and let it begin with me.”

We got the paperwork set up, everything but the date, to be paid for out of the small insurance policy I have on Beloved through work. Very reasonably priced, and I will make sure to include that contact information with the wills and the other “if I should die” stuff because if I turn out to be as impressed with their follow-through, I want them to handle my cremation when I go.

The nurse returned my call and estimated she would be here in half an hour. The plan was for her to check Beloved thoroughly and help me wrangle him into bed.

Our lovely neighbors (they of the incredible tamales) came over to thank Beloved for all he has done for them over the years. It was a brief and tender visit. They don’t know me, so they were a little shy, but I thanked them profusely. She was nearly in tears. Yeah, me too.

Once the nurse got here, Beloved’s breathing was loud enough that she could hear him while she stood at the door. He was unresponsive: couldn’t keep his eyes open or respond verbally. All of a sudden he stopped breathing, and his eyes popped wide open. She confirmed that he was dying, and I called Squishy and then YT, who called his twin, and the kids all got here, with wives, in short order.

He died at 1:36 this morning. I have spoken to four of my children and left a voicemail for the fifth. I have emailed my sister, our bishop, and the Relief Society president. We have spoken to all but one of the siblings. One will be here tomorrow oops, sorry, later today.

Beloved passed quietly and painlessly into the next world. He is with his cherished first wife, his mother, and several dear friends. The boys were speculating that he was chatting up his hero, John Wayne, and that one of the friends had already found all the honey holes for fishing in Heaven. I told him I would catch up with him in 40 years or so.

Thank you all for your prayers and loving thoughts. I will put something on FB after the last sibling has been notified. This is going to be another long day. I suspect I didn’t get all the verb tenses fixed from the draft I started six hours ago. So grateful for all of you.

I think this is the part where I become the crazy cat lady.

6 comments:

still here and never going back said...

Lynn
Although we have never met , I have made the journey you have started today. I am so glad you have your family and faith to support you. There are no words or perfect alternatives from here.. Listen to your body and do what you can. Sleep, knit, pray and cry. You will be in my thoughts in the weeks ahead.
Debra

Anonymous said...

I am so sorry, and have very many prayers in my heart for you. Steph in NH

Angeluna said...

Lynn, I am so sorry. My heart goes out to you. You have honored this man with your love.

Please take care of your own health now. Your heart will take more time.

Angela

Kristen said...

Even though I too believe he is enjoying being with loved ones on the other side of here, I can't help but think he's missing you too. You've made him so happy.
I'm so sorry.
I've tried to email but the address isn't complete. When you have the time and ability and would like to post your email address somewhere, I'd like to get your mailing address to send you something.

AlisonH said...

I'm so sorry. I'm sorry I didn't get to meet him as well as you. I'm so very grateful that you did.

Much love, many hugs. I so wish I were there.

Cambria said...

Oh Lynn,

I am so sorry. I don't even really know what to say except that I'm fighting back tears and that I'll be praying for peace and comfort for you and your extended family. I know we've never met in person, but we've been blog friends for years now and I feel like I really know you. I've always admired you and how strong your spirit and your testimony are. I know Heavenly Father has a plan for you, and that he'll be taking you into his hands each night to help comfort you a little bit at a time. If I can help... If you need to 'talk' to someone who isn't so closely involved... Anything. Just let me know.

Love,
Cambria