Friday, April 25, 2008
So I decided to make it a bit more interesting and told her how her cousin in Japan was already waking up on Friday morning even though we were only eating dinner here on Thursday. Her eyes got big, she laughed and said, "now that's just freaky!"
Matt isn't much better these days and seems to constantly be asking "why?" to anything he possible can. (I thought that was a 2 year old stage - not something a 4 year goes through.) I appreciate that he's simply trying to comprehend the big world around him but I have to admit that it drives me up the wall a lot of the time. Mostly because the "why's" seem to be an automatic conversation reflex after a while and not really a legitimate question. But then there are times when he simply cracks me up with his simplistic logic behind what can be a complex issue for a 4 year old.
For example; this morning Matt found one of our cats in the backyard torturing a squirrel. From what I could tell, the squirrel had a broken back or something as it dragged itself away from Gipper. And as Matt watched, Gipper batted the squirrel around a bit more and then finally grabbed it by the throat and rag-dolled it a bit. The questions from Matt just came rolling out about why Gipper would do such a thing. I didn't want to pretend that the cat was just "playing" because, hey, you can't coddle your children forever. But I also didn't want to play out the slaying of the creature with too much drama and end up scarring his little brain forever. He seemed satisfied with my answers at first until he finally said, "why can't he just eat his own food instead of eating squirrels and mice?"
My response was that Gipper is an animal and that's just what some animals do. To which he replied, "Gipper's not an animal!"
Ok, so now how do you explain that an animal is a creature and not what we refer to he and his sister as when they are acting crazy? (And I knew for a fact that my answer would lead to the next question of what is a creature?) So I explained it by saying, why don't you ask your Daddy.
(Hey, I'm home with the kid all day, every day now. You can't expect Daddy to get out of answering some of these important questions!)
Tuesday, April 15, 2008
Monday, April 07, 2008
While he was admitted to the hospital for 3 days he was kept on oxygen and the original thought was that he would be allowed to return home but would most likely remain on the oxygen...forever. But after about two days, he came off and was doing well enough to have the oxygen sent home with him in the event that he needed it. We were told that his heart was weakening as well. In fact when he had had been hospitalized a few years prior he was told that he had about 4o-60% capacity. This time around...he was down to about 15%.
About a week after he was discharged he began experiencing pain and was taken to the hospital again. This time around he was told that there was nothing that they could do there that he couldn't do with the help of hospice from home. He was told that, at best, he had 6 months to live.
On the morning of March 19th, my Dad went to visit my grandparents and to install a type of "lift" for my Grandfather's recliner in order to help him get in/out of it with ease. He left the house around 12:30pm and a little while after that, the minister from my Grandparent's church stopped by for a visit. She said that she spent some time talking and praying with them both and because they had been unable to make the trip to mass that Sunday prior, she asked if they would like to receive communion. They agreed and no sooner had she given them communion when she said that a funny look came over my Grandfather's face. She asked him if he was ok, to which he replied, "no" and at that point she and my Grandmother decided to call hospice for assistance. A few moments later my Grandfather passed away. He was still sitting in his favorite recliner.
Norman Harold Adelsberger was 92 years old. He left behind my Grandmother whom he was married to for 69 years along with 3 children, 9 grand-children and 18 great-grandchildren. It was a small family but we shared a lot of love. We'll miss this wonderful, quiet man. But I know that he's in a better place, having lived a long and full life. I only hope that I can be so lucky some day.
Thursday, April 03, 2008
Immediately after the tumor was found, his operation to remove it was scheduled for the following week. I stood by the phone that day in anticipation of any news that would come my way and sometime around noon I finally received word that he had made it out of surgery and was doing well. As I exhaled a sigh of relief for him making it past the first step in this process I began scheduling my trip back to PA in order to visit family that weekend.
Friday evening rolled around and I planned on picking up the kids, running home to finish packing the car, feed the kids, say goodby to Bill and hit the road by 6:30pm for the 5 hour drive ahead. Unfortunately after a phone call with a family member my plans were altered. Tests results from the tumor that was removed were delivered that day and the news wasn't good. There was cancer in 9 of 13 lymph nodes and he had stage 4 cancer.
I quickly placed a call to Bill at work with the news and he decided to head back with me as well. We both decided that if there was nothing else that we could do for him we at least wanted him to know that we were both there supporting every decision that he and my sister-in-law would be making and to give them our love and support along the way.
Dan was doing really well by the time we got to see him Saturday afternoon and was discharged the following day. The best that we could do for him was to deliver balloons to his room displaying just how much we loved him, in writing..."Congratulations on the sex change operation". (Can't lose your sense of humor through adversity, right?)
I also got a chance to visit with my Grandfather who had been in the hospital earlier that week as well with heart problems. All in all, it was a nice weekend. Far too quick as usual but it's always good to visit with everyone any chance I can get.
The weeks passed for Dan and other than a blood clot in his leg, he healed quickly. The best news of all came to us last week when it was determined that there was no cancer, anywhere, in his body. Take a minute to let that sink in...because remember earlier...stage 4 cancer!!??!!
To think that this was possible when the earlier diagnosis was delivered is by far the understatement of the year. Does anyone ever receive news like that after a stage 4 diagnosis? So whether the doctors did a fabulous job or there was help from a spiritual side is not for me to decide. All that I can say for sure is that I am so happy for him. The roller coaster ride that I'm sure he was on has leveled out to a steady ride of chemo treatments to ensure that any undetected cancer in his blood is eliminated has begun.
And while his fight is far from over, it's nice to know that he has fought hard and has won every round so far. He'll keep fighting hard too. I know he will because that's just who he is. His spirit, personality and upbeat attitude are something that I admire a lot. And I'm proud to call him my big brother.
Tuesday, April 01, 2008
- Megan's 6th birthday
- Grandfather's passing
- Cousin expecting
- New job
- Haircuts, teeth and crawling
- Brother Dan's good news - no wait...EXCELLENT news!
Our lives are sometimes way beyond normal, in fact can be quite boring at times, but it's all passing by so quickly these days. I know it's not all over the top, exciting stuff and that you won't all be sitting on your hands, holding your breath, just waiting for the moment that I hit the 'Publish Post' button, but these events have not only kept us quite busy but on our proverbial toes as well.