Just Me

Wednesday, June 26, 2013

Nearing the End...

I have known this day would come for quite a while. I have wondered what it would be like to be "here". Today I experienced it...

"The end is approaching..."

I woke up this morning really tired. Between the storms last night, Dave getting me up 4 times, and the 3 dogs that slept in a twin bed with me...I got little to no sleep. So, my plan for the day was to do as little as possible. I was going to relax. Our nurse called this morning and came for a visit. She has visited more frequently since last week's all nighter. I also got a call from our social worker saying she had some books on grief for my kids and wanted to drop them off. So, around 11:00 our social worker was here. She always has such great insight for me. She makes me think. I tend to be strong (whether I really am or not) and push through, but as this journey goes on, I realize how big this is...it is MUCH bigger than what I am capable of walking. I am thankful for the things she says that makes me think. I spoke with her about what is going on with him. She told me he is progressing quickly. The thoughts and emotions flooded and were all over the place...such sadness and relief all at the same time.

Our nurse arrived while she was still here and started her routine with him. When she was done, I asked her as well about what she was feeling and seeing. I have had my feelings and thoughts. I watch him day in and day out. I see things. The last couple of days have been "bad" days for him...(such an insignificant word for his current state). I guess, I have just seen a difference. He is weaker. He hasn't been out of bed at all since Sunday. He has only been drinking water and eating ice for several days. He has not had anything food wise in probably 3-4 weeks. He is SO thin...it is heart wrenching to look at my once big, strong husband laying helpless in his bed day after day, shrinking down to next to nothing. She agreed, things are progressing quickly for him. I mentioned that his mom was coming next week, is it the kind of quick that means they should come this weekend. Her response, "Yes if she wants to see him awake." 

This is happening...it hit like a tidal wave. 

I have been praying for a quick home going for him. And God is answering. But it is so painful. The social worker told me today that I really do not know all that is ahead for me...I couldn't agree more. How do you sit, knowing that your spouse is going to die soon and experience so many thoughts and emotions at once???

On one hand, deep sorrow. Sorrow in the fact that I planned on growing old with this man. Sorrow in the "what should have beens" for us. Sharing visits with grandkids. Laughing together-which is something we have done a lot of. Sorrow in the fact that he has had to suffer for what seems like an eternity. The humility he has had to suffer through. The pain. The heartaches. I sit by him often and look at him. Usually we sit in silence, but I always wonder what he is thinking. Sometimes I ask, sometimes I just let him think. Sorrow for the kids who have already been through great losses in life. 

And on the other hand, relief. I have carried this load for a long time. It is a huge, mountainous load. I have only recently realized the magnitude of it. Yes, I will feel relief when this load is gone. But it will be replaced with a load as a wife mourning her husband. And as a mom who is helping her children in their grief. I will be relieved when I don't have to get someone to sit with him so I can go to Wal-Mart or a ball game or church. But in those same moments, I know I will wish I had 5 more minutes...

This cup is so bitter. This is the best way I have found to describe this journey for me: I am standing on a railroad track. I am stuck. I can not get off of it. I see the freight train barreling towards me. I can not stop it. It is coming. It is going to hit. When it hits, it will be ugly and messy. I know it will hit, I just don't know when. Today, that train got a whole lot closer. And I am bracing myself for when it strikes. The Lord spoke to my heart earlier this week about this process and the days ahead. The Bible specifically tells the church to care for the widow. I am so self-sufficient, I struggle saying I need help...but the Lord made it clear to me that one of the reasons he has called the church to help the widow is because it is a load much too big for them to bear. It brought such comfort to me to know this is what he has for me. I can lean on my church for the help I will need. And I am so thankful for such a wonderful, loving, supportive church!

The other aspect from today is that I experienced HOPE. I KNOW, when Dave takes his last breath, he will immediately be welcomed into the arms of Jesus. I have thought about that and we have talked about it. What we think it will be like. That the pains in this life will no longer matter. There will be no more hurt for him. He won't walk with a drop foot anymore, no need for his brace! Cancer will no longer matter. No more tears will be shed! And he will be in the presence of Jesus for the rest of eternity. He will experience the angels around the throne saying "HOLY HOLY HOLY"...Very soon, he will see Jesus. 

Only Jesus knows the moment Dave will breathe his last breath. Today, I try to look at him and appreciate now. It is so hard with his body being so run down and beaten up from cancer. But today, I have him. I can hold his hand and hear him say, "I love you." Even though this day has been very hard, I am thankful for today.


  1. I cannot imagine what you are going through. I can only catch of a glimpse of what your anguish must be like if I allow myself to imagine what I would feel if I were in your shoes. Even the thought of watching my husband slowly die brings me to my knees. To me, you are a strong woman. Sometimes I know that the trials we go through in life are unbearable and we wonder how God can allow it to happen, why He allows it to happen...but He knows how strong we are and every circumstance, good and bad, only makes us stronger and draws us closer to Him. May His grace cover you. May you feel how much He loves you. And may your husband have a peaceful goodbye when God says it is time. And at that time, may God draw you into His arms and hold you as His strength seeps into you.


  2. Thank you so much...your words are sweet and beautiful! I am so thankful for such a loving Abba Father, Bridegroom, and Savior! Your prayers, thoughts, and words are much appreciated!