Did you miss my post from last weekend? That’s because I was getting ready to go to Florida with Chad’s family. We had a fabulous time, and I hope you won’t mind if I post a few pictures from that trip.
And now, back to our story~
The storm WILL rage, and the winds WILL roll. But to believe in the middle of it all, to have faith that leads to Jesus, that’s the secret to riding out the storms of life. (Source)
Mondays through Fridays became routine to us. Make sure the five alarms are set before I go to bed, wake up with the alarms (and the multiple times in the night when he gets up to use the restroom) to give him medications, and go to radiation. He was not nauseated, though he did perspire a lot.
One night we watched “The Alamo.” It made Roger cry; he was so tender. He cried in thanksgiving for me in the mornings. He said he loved me so much.
I found that using a wheelchair to get him around the Siteman Cancer Center made life much easier for me. It took less time, and made getting to elevators and through automatic doors a snap. I also became an expert on which wheelchairs worked easier for me. They had some new ones, but they were very hard to move, so I grabbed the old ones as they were available.
One afternoon the radiation was quick, but the traffic was horrible from downtown St. Louis to West County. Jess had texted me to get a soda for her if we could, so I asked Roger to simply text back that we would. Somehow he got on an old text, couldn’t find how to reply, and then out of the blue I heard songs from my play list—alphabetically—and they were the ones I listen to when I jog.
It began with “Anamaniacs” except it was in repeat mode, so I heard it about SIX times; I laughed as we went down the interstate, thinking I would go crazy listening to that song over and over. Somehow he got to the next one–Bonanza–Down to the River and Pray–The Electrical Light Parade—you get the idea.
Roger was still confused about simple things, like where to empty his pouch, and he didn’t sleep well at night. One night as he lay down to sleep he said that he felt like a high school kid. I asked why, and he said it was because he felt like he had just run a 440 (that was the race he set records in during his high school years), and now he was exhausted. Maybe that is what his fatigue was like.
Do you remember that Jessica and Scott were going to have their fourth child in September? Well, their church had planned a baby shower for them, and it worked out that all of the Weldy women were able to attend. It was a refreshing time when my mind didn’t have to focus on sickness or death. It was all about a birth at that party. And it was delightful.
We made some great memories at Scott’s. The boys often came downstairs, and Asher enjoyed playing ping-pong with Roger. And, as you can imagine, with three kids, there is always something funny or exciting happening. Roger had a hard time remembering the pass code for his phone, so Lisa took a picture of “Ask someone for the code” and made it the main wallpaper. It seemed to work for a while, and it kept him from locking himself out of the phone.
One weekend I traveled back to Illinois and was able to get a great night’s sleep, the first I had in a long time. Six hours straight. I began to wish I could bank those hours for future deficits. To give you a glimpse into my physical and emotional state at the end of August, here is a message I sent to Roger’s sister, Elaine:
Hey, Elaine. I need some extra prayer just now. It’s hard to explain. I’m ok. Roger is ok. But, here’s what I wrote in m journal. Maybe it will explain it better.
- I think I am beginning to crash or feel the effects of this life.
- I feel so tired.
- I am not depressed, but I feel funny emotionally. It’s as though I need help with managing everything.
- I’m tired of managing the pills.
- I’m tired of getting up in the night with Roger to see that he makes it to the bathroom.
- I’m tired of explaining things to him.
- I’m tired of making sure he doesn’t eat too much.
- I’m tired of remembering that he can’t be rushed.
- I’m tired of feeling out of sorts with everyone.
- I’m just tired.
And now he has a huge tooth filling fall out. I think it is one that holds in his plate. What do I do now? He is here in St. Louis for the weeks, only home on weekends.
And the scary thing is that I know this is just a beginning. It will get much worse. I honestly feel like I am panicking inside. I don’t know if I can do this.
In the middle of the night he sat on the couch, and I got him to come back to bed. As we lay there he said he didn’t know who he was. His poor mind. It’s just spinning, and he is aware sometimes and not at others. He can laugh at funny stuff and even gets innuendos, but the depth is not there.
So….there are my thoughts. I know you can’t fix it, but you know the One Who can help me get through this, if it He chooses not to fix it.
She wrote back with this sweet note
Dear Father we need to start this moment right now, right now with you. We need your peace and strength. We need your hands to reach out and hold us for we are weary and we want to soar like Eagles. Our hearts are so heavy out of love. We give this day to you and ask you open doors for help and provide according to your promises. We trust you with Roger -either way you got him –he is safe and loved. Envelope Glenda until she feels your presence your strength at a new level. Emotionally she is drained and needs to feel more than emotions. She needs to feel your strength in her mind body and soul.
Open the doors of wisdom. In Jesus name Amen
When does your family come? Do you want me to come?
It is time for you to get help. Ask your doctor to help you get help, visiting nurses, hospice -they don’t just come because it’s the end anymore. You are both facing the unknown and even though our faith is strong we don’t know, we don’t understand, we are weak.
Keep talking, praying, journaling, loving. I am here, I can be there in five hours. I know how hard it is on the care giver but God is there even when you feel you are in a cloud. Right here with you.
My gratefulness for supportive family members cannot be measured. And five days of chemo and radiation were done. We had survived.