Saturday, March 28, 2009

Daddy's pain has increased. So, we have increased the pain medicine. Mom is having a very difficult time watching him suffer. It is taking its toll on her nerves and emotionally.

Today is my big brother's 45th birthday! Happy Birthday David! Here he is taking a nap with Daddy...don't they look alike?!
Here is Dad and Ivey (about a month ago) working on his fishing tackle.
Cricket and Muffin taking a nap :)
Some of Dad's cattle

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Just a quick update on Dad...not much change except a little violent behavior on his part. We believe it is due to results of his strokes and maybe lack of medication to calm him. We found out we were told the wrong amount to give him...1/5 the dose! Thanks for telling us!
We were also told by one of the nurses that another patient has held on for 21 days now with no food or drink. Wow. We know Dad is really strong as well, so this could go on for some time. Just praying for rest for Mom and my brother David who has to be there to help control Dad. (he is too much for me).
I just found out that they have diagnosed Dad with terminal agitation, see below:

Terminal Agitation: A Major Distressful Symptom in the Dying

Many families may be surprised when a terminally ill (and usually calm) family member becomes restless or even agitated. The depth of such restlessness or agitation varies from patient to patient. When moods change or personalities seem to change, family members may be completely bewildered and feel helpless: not knowing what to do. It is common knowledge that individuals who are experiencing even minor illnesses may demonstrate mood changes such as irritability, anger, depression and avoid communication with others. When a terminal illness not only initially strikes, but is now nearing the end, patients may experience profound mood changes. Such mood changes are often difficult for family members to "handle." Causes and treatments for restlessness and agitation are well-known among the palliative care professionals who work with the dying on a regular basis.
What is Terminal Restlessness or Agitation?
Those who work with the dying know this type of restlessness or agitation almost immediately. However, the public and patient's family may have no idea what is going on and often become quite alarmed at their loved one's condition. What does it look like? Although it varies somewhat in each patient, there are common themes that are seen over and over again.
Patients may be too weak to walk or stand, but they insist on getting up from the bed to the chair, or from the chair back to the bed. Whatever position they are in, they complain they are not comfortable and demand to change positions, even if pain is well managed. They may yell out using uncharacteristic language, sometimes angrily accusing others around them. They appear extremely agitated and may not be objective about their own condition. They may be hallucinating, having psychotic episodes and be totally "out of control." At these times, the patient's safety is seriously threatened.

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

My Dad has taken a turn for the worse in the last week. He has had a series of strokes in the last weeks, some small and one not so small. The latest one happened last Wednesday and since then he has been bedridden, mostly in a deep sleep. He has only been awake for like 30 seconds or less and will say "hey" or "I love u" in a weak voice that is hard to understand. Hospice has taken over his care and keeps us informed as to how we can care for him and keep him comfortable as his health declines. I don't know the timetable for this, but we know he is preparing for a great homecoming in the near future. It is most difficult to see him like this and see Mom grieve over him. He has been her one love since she was 14. We just pray he will have little pain, and that
Mom will have rest and peace.
Keith took this picture early in the day, the Wed. that he had the stroke.

Here is Ivey enjoying alot of time with Cassie since we are out at Mom and Dad's every day.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Heading to Birmingham today to spend some time with friends...hopefully it will be uneventful at Mom and Dad's while I am away. Dad is still not sleeping, so pray for Mom. Hopefully, she will get some answers back Wednesday!

Jaclyn and Zack, Dollars, and Kim....hope to see you there!!

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Update on Daddy:

He had a brain CT this past week...waiting on results, but they did schedule an MR for this week to take a closer look. (possible strokes or cancer??) We don't know anything for sure, just guesses by the doctor.
The Ct was done because we (especially Mom) have noticed changes in Daddy's behavior lately. Mom is exhausted physically and emotionally. Right now, they are at the lake with my brothers because Daddy wanted to go. Of course, now it is cold and raining...come back spring weather!

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

A recent conversation between Keith and Elijah

Elijah: "See the picture I drew for Momma!"
Keith: "Wow, this is great! Who are these people?"
Elijah: "This is me and this is Momma. I am giving her some flowers."
Keith: "Huh, well, is this me over here with the big spikey hair and one eye?"
Elijah: (laughing) "No, Daddy, that is a tree with a hole in it!"
Keith: "Well, where am I?"
Elijah: "Well, you're already dead."
Keith: (and me laughing) "Oh, so are those flowers for my grave?"

Friday, March 6, 2009

Happy Gotcha Day!

Well, today is our "Gotcha Day".
We celebrate today, March 6th, because six yrs. ago Keith and I rushed to the hospital to meet our little Hispanic son for the first time.
I will never, EVER forget the few days before...March 3rd: getting the call that a baby boy had been born...all of the hurdles that had to be overcome. Yet, in the midst of all of the questions we felt a tremendous peace that the Lord was calling us to adopt this child no matter what obstacles stood before us.

I will never forget our Moms' staying at the house with Ivey and Robby, anxiously waiting for us to return.
I will never forget the excitement that hurried me into the hospital, into the room where we waited to sign the last papers and then see our baby boy.
I won't ever forget the nurse wheeling the little baby bed into the room and saying "here is your son! "
I will never forget that beautiful head FULL of jet black hair and brown skin. HE WAS BEAUTIFUL! I just cried as I held him. I couldn't believe it! Such a miracle! Our love for a child that I did not carry in my womb, but did carry in my heart for several years, was just a great as the love we had for our other two children!

I will never forget the kids rushing out to meet Elijah, our mothers right behind them so excited about the newest grandbaby.

I will never forget Kim Hill, Page Dollar, Michelle Little, Kristie Lawrence, and Lisa Knapp (and their families) all coming over that day to see him and rejoice with us.
I will never forget the love poured out to us from friends, family and fellow believers through cards, gifts for Elijah and gifts of money,and prayers that had been sent up for this adoption.

Such a glorious day! A day just as exciting as the day a mother goes into labor and gives birth to her child. Children ARE a gift from the Lord.

Elijah IS a gift from the Lord! Today we celebrate that gift!!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

What's wrong my hubby asked when he saw my post and also read on my facebook that I was gloomy...

Well, it was a little gloomy with all of the rainy weather this past weekend, but I wasn't totally gloomy. As for the blog, I just was expressing what was on my heart - that life is tough! My life is not all rosy, and neither is yours if you are honest! But we get through by the grace of God!

I do at times get irritable because of this darn back pain! I am grumpy sometimes and then realize that the reason is because I am in pain. And pain can be downright depressing. Anyhoo, I am trying to work through that.

On a lighter note, we celebrated Elijah's birthday this past Sunday AND Tuesday! His Mama Nanny gave him a party at Build A Bear with a few friends. And would you believe the blessing of SNOW! We were in the middle of his party and there was a call for "PArty Break" to go outside and enjoy the HUGE snowflakes falling! Elijah's first time ever experiencing snow.

It was a great day of fun for him! Then on Tuesday, we gave him our gift (Gameboy SP) his response to it..."sweet!"

He also got a happy meal (his favorite) and went shopping at Bass Pro for a bow and arrow.

Friday is his "Gotcha Day", so we will post more about that this weekend.

Congratulations to Zack and Jaclyn on the birth of Eli...
and to the Dollar family in finding out they are having a healthy boy!!