January 2002 -- Our angel reaches his end


Happy New Year!

We were asleep when it actually happened. We however made it to the new year, with Michael. So you see, through it all, it is a happy new year. Paul went to first night Monterey with pals to ring in the new year. I was glad to see him go out and have fun.

January 1, 2002, Tuesday ~~ Our new years day

Michael stayed in our bed till 11:30 today. He skipped Breakfast for the first time. He was way to out of it to sit up and eat. He did say he would try to get up for lunch. He wanted a big chef salad from Margie's with ranch dressing on it. My mother brought over the HUGE chef salads at noon for us. I got Michael up and got him to the kitchen table. He sat at the table and ate the toppings off of his salad. We talked to him as we all enjoyed our lunch together.

A headache 

Michael says he has a very bad headache. He has not complained of "bad" pain before this, not even after surgery. I called Doctor Kim, she was very sweet as usual as I apologized for calling her on a holiday. She said no problem. She said she will call a prescription for some Vicodan into the pharmacy to ease his pain. I told her I slowed the taper of the Decadron because it was causing him problems. She said that is fine. It was not an easy task finding a pharmacy open on new years day, but we did.

I laid Michael down on the day bed to rest at 12:30. While Paul baby sat his Dad I ran to the pharmacy to get his pain medication. When I got home he was already asleep. I woke him up slightly, gave him his pain medication and regular drugs, put is bad arm in a sling and tucked him back in. He fell back to sleep looking so sweet and innocent.

Pam visits

Pam came to visit us this afternoon. She brought black eye peas for New Years good luck and some of her wonderful homemade cookies. She read a poem to Michael that her daughter Sarah had written. I am not sure she knew he was listening, but after she left as I fed him the black eye peas, he said "Pam's daughter Sarah wrote a very nice poem, I liked it,Sara must not be a baby anymore I think she is a very smart young lady. " I told him yes Sarah has grown, and she is amazing. Michael must have eaten a cup of the peas. He giggled as he told me he was amazed Pam grew up to be a such a good cook. He said these were the best black eye peas he had ever had. He then curled up and dozed back off to sleep.

Confusion

Michael gradually became more confused and shaky as the day went on. He got up twice to have a smoke, did not speak, just stared blankly into space. At one point he even "smoked" and unlit cigarette.

Jack in the Box

Michael wants a chicken supreme and cheese sticks from Jack in the Box at 6 o clock. I call Paul who is coming home for dinner any way and tell him of the request. Paul rushed home and went to retrieve Michael's food order. Michael sat at the edge of his bed, he ate his sandwich with vigor, enjoying every bite. It was good to see him enjoy his food so.

January 1, 2002, Tuesday ~~ Our Final shower

Michael needed a bath something horrible. I brought him into the bed room, he was very unsteady on his feet. I told him I was going to shower him. He said ok. I undressed him got him to stand under the warm stream of water. I used the bath soap Renee made me for Christmas as it is very smooth, and smells nice. As I washed him. He stood silent while I babbled about the soap and reminded him to hold on to the wall. At one point Michael got a boyish grin as he looked at me and exclaimed, "You only wanted to give me a shower so you can touch my pee pee". I roared with laughter and he grinned, I know he was tickled to have made me crack up so. I rinsed him, dried him, and put his jamies on. He again complained of pain so I tucked him into our bed and went to get him his bed time medications, with a pain pill. I had a hard time sitting him up, but eventually I did, and he took his pills. He then fell hard onto the bed snuggled into his pillow and was sleeping like a baby.

Long night

Michael was up at midnight, 1 A.M., 3 A.M. , 4:30 A.M. , and 5 A.M. in pain. He is very dazed looking. He speaks very little except to say he hurts. He asks for a pain pill or cigarette. His entire body trembles when he is upright. He is so shaky on his feet I am afraid he is going to fall. When he asked for a smoke, I just sat with him on the bed and let him have it there, as I fear for his safety moving him too much. My sweet heart is fading. My heart is breaking.

slipping away 

Michael is getting so very tired, my baby is slipping away. Throughout the last few days I have watched as he swiftly takes his leave. He knows we all love him as he slips quietly into his world of sleep. Resting up for his journey to heaven.

January 2, 2002, Wednesday ~~ The sun rises

The sun rises on a new day as it always has and always will. Michael is sleeping quietly in the bed. at 7 A.M. I go into our room and wake him gently. I tell him I have medication and food for him. He cannot sit up. I pull him to a sitting position, put the pills into his mouth and put the sipper lid on the water bottle to his lips to wash them down. He swallows, looking like he is not sure why exactly. I get him to the bathroom so he can urinate. He stands at the toilet knowing from childhood what he needs to do. He goes then his entire body trembles. I quickly move him back to the bed. He collapses onto the bed. I let him rest a moment then offer him some cereal and milk. It is his favorite special K red berries. I again get him to sit. I feed him his cereal he rolls it around in his mouth like an infant who is experiencing food for the first time. After a bit he finally swallows each small bite. I put the bowl to his lips they quiver as he sips the cold liquid down. He is exhausted now. I lay him back down, roll him to his side and he is asleep before I pull the covers over his tired body.

Egg Mc Muffin 

My mother came over this morning at 9. She had stopped at Mc Donald's and got egg Mc Muffins. I got Michael up and brought him to the kitchen table. He sat silently relishing the Egg Mc Muffin my Mother had brought for him. Then he was ready to go back to bed, that was enough. He told my Mother "Michael wants up." He tried to stand, she tried to support him, she called for me. I went in and coaxed him back into his chair. Let him rest a moment,then I took his tottering self, back to the bedroom. I laid him back into bed and tucked him in all cozy warm. Walking him now is not a good idea. I am going to ask Wes for a wheel chair.

Who needs words?

Michael's speech is going. Today he just stares at me mostly when I talk to him. He does not say a word. He did tell my Mother this morning "Michael wants up". Other than that the only response we can get is "yep" but hey most times that says it all. yep, yep...

Hospice

Wes our hospice nurse/case manager came today with pain medications to help make Michael more comfortable. He seems like such a caring man. It is nice to know people like him walk the planet. Wes explained all the drugs and what they were for, I took notes so I will not forget. Wes ordered Michael a wheelchair and commode to make his lifeand mine a little easier. They were delivered this afternoon.

He examined Michael and took a blood sample. While Wes was caring for Michael our Hospice Social worker came, Brandy Abend. She was very friendly and I felt very comfortable with her. I think they know what alien territory this is, as they are very patient. When Wes was done with Michael he sat at the kitchen table with Brandy and I for a few moments to do his paper work. Wes was surprised at the rapid deterioration Michael is showing. He told Brandy he was here Saturday and Michael was sitting up talking, now... Brandy learned some about our family and gave me some good ideas on things I need to do now and after. She even had great advise for our children. We have been telling the children Michael hurt his head and is very sick. She said we need to change the wording to Michael has cancer. This way they do not get confused when he dies. We do not want them thinking if they get sick or hurt their heads they will die. I think this is very sound thinking.

January 2, 2002, Wednesday ~~ Our last Family dinner

As I was talking to parents Paul went into check on Michael. He was kicking his covers off and trying to get up. Paul helped him to the wheel chair, as they started out the bedroom door Michael had a seizure. Poor Paul he thought he had done something to cause it. I assured him that he did not, we got Michael through the seizure and brought him to the kitchen. I crushed his pills and put them in chocolate pudding for him. This made life much easier. I asked Michael if he would like dinner with us. He said "yep". I put a plate of steak, creamed spinach and rice pilaf in front of him, intending to feed him. He feed himself dinner. We all three sat at our dinner table as he had so many dinners past, we ate as a family, as a unit, like it should be. Michael got very tired after dinner. He could not even sit up straight in the wheel chair. Paul and I helped him back to bed. and tucked our tired soldier in.

January 3, 2002, Thursday ~~ Near coma 

Michael does not respond at all to me since about 2 A.M. this morning. I think he is busy in angel orientation. I kiss him on the head, cry for my loss, and wish him a safe and happy journey. This leg he is making in the quiet of his coma. I cannot come along, this part is his. I can stand at the side lines and care for his earthly vessel till it is no longer of use to him. I know he knows I am cheering him on. I know he knows I am trying not to hold him back by holding on. Sleep my angel learn your lessons soon you will be free of this earth and it's pain.

Willie sleeps with Daddy

.

.

Through your darkest journey,

I have been your friend.

In your weakest moments,

my loyalty did not bend.

A small dog in stature,

my master did I tend.

strong, brave and vigilant,

I gaurd you til the end.

Know this my companion,

my heart will someday mend.

But when you leave this world,

my love will never end.


My earthly angels

Anaise called me last night. Her mother is off for 6 weeks. She is going to come care for the children in the morning with my mother Judy so I can spend this time with Michael. I was so moved, I cried. The people I am surrounded with never cease to amaze me and warm my heart. I am speechless.

January 3, 2002, Thursday ~~ Our Babies say good bye

I wrote the children a book this morning about Michael's brain cancer. I used illustrations that Michael had drawn for the book. I took the book now titled "The cancer in his brain" into the toy room. I gathered our children and read them the book I wrote for them. After I read to them I explained Michael is resting for his trip with the angels. I told them if they would like they could come kiss Michael good bye before he goes. The children were thrilled at the invitation to say good bye to their Michael. We all went in as a group. Each of them tenderly kissed his cheek and said good bye. They told him they loved him. It was very touching. Michael new they were there, his eyes fluttered, his hand moved. He knew his precious babies were there for him. We went back to the toy room where each of the children were given a copy of the book to color and take home. I am glad the children got this special time with their Michael.

January 3, 2002, Thursday ~~ Michael responds to Paul

Around two o clock Paul asked Michael if he wanted a sip of 7-up. He moaned "no" Paul thought he misunderstood and asked again. This time he got a firm "no". This was to be the last Michael would speak to anyone.

January 3, 2002, Thursday ~~ Michael holds on tight

Michael's body started seizing every hour about 3 this afternoon. He would let out a moan then seize for three minutes. It was torture watching him go through this. I called Hospice they told me what drugs to give him. After a bit that seemed to calm his body. 

Through this night Michael held on tight. I laid on the bed to his right, Paul to his left. His doggie boys were scatter all over the bed. He moaned in such pain, but a few drops of Morphine each hour and some Adivan every four could quiet him for the most part. Michael is a fighter this showed in this long night. Through his pain he would not given up his fight. His body tempeture would spike to 105 degrees, he held on. Paul and I took turns rubbing his head, kissing him, talking to him, holding him close, holding his hands in ours. As we held his hands, we cried for our loss, Michael is a good man. Paul and I told Michael we love him, we will miss him with all our souls but his journey on this earth is done. We promised him we will be ok, and he is to go to heaven without a worry. I think this time has bonded all three of us with a closeness that will remain in heaven and on earth. As I write this Paul is laying in the bed with his Dad, they are holding hands, I peek in and tears well up in my eyes. These two men, are my guys. These two men are my life.



January 4, 2001, Friday ~~ we say farewell

Paul and I laid on the bed with Michael. I think we finally got ahead of the pain. Michael is finally resting quietly. We laid together and held Michael tenderly, touching his head and hands. The dogs slept on the bed all around us. My mother sat in a chair close by. Our friend John stayed with us, giving us his strong sound guidance. Anaise tended the day care children in the toy room for us so we could be by Michael's side.

The house was full of the children's laughter and sounds of play. At the same time a calm silence surrounded Michael, as we waited for his tired earthly body to release him to the heavens.

Suad

Suad came into our room to say good bye to her friend. Her eyes brimming with tears. She kissed Michael, told him she loved him, and bid him farewell. She and I hugged and we mourned for the friend who was journeying out from this plain.

Anaise

Anaise came in and said her good bye to our sleeping angel. She hugged and kissed him sweetly. She cried with us, as our hearts break for him.

Wes, time is short

Wes came in and checked Michael. He was slipping away quickly. Wes assured us Michael was comfortable and we should feel happy. He was surrounded by love, and was peaceful in his passing.

Depends and Dust ruffles

Michael has wet our bed, twice. He is wearing Depends. These things look very big, but they are very thin. They come no where near containing the flood he produced. Funny thing is, I only have two sets of linens for this bed. Now both sets are wet, as are all the blankets for the bed. Michael is spending his final hours resting on a dust ruffle, covered with a sleeping bag. I know he would find the humor in this.

Tamales 

Anais's mother sent Tamales she had made. At 12:30 Anaise heated them so we could eat. They were wonderful. Paul who had not eaten in two days, relented, eating five with a desperate hunger. I was relieved he ate, I think Michael was too, for right after Paul ate, Michael's breathing changed. 

Free at last

It became apparent that our darling Michael was making his final exit. He took a few more breaths, then at 1:06 P.M. his body relaxed and his soul sailed free. As we cried and comforted each other he soared onto heaven, free at last from his earthly woes. 

The sign to Paul

As Michael left this world for the next Paul saw a light on the ceiling. I told him it is a sign from his Dad that he was watching him lighting his way, Protecting him with his heavenly glow.

Ready for company

Paul and I bathed the empty vessel that we Knew as Michael. We dressed him in his favorite Christmas sweats, put Matching hole less socks on his feet, cleaned his teeth, washed his face. He looked like a comfortable sleeping Michael again, no pain, only peace. 

The tape

I gave Paul the tape Michael had made him. Paul put the tiny tape into the handheld player and placed it on on Michael's stomach. We all sat and listened as Michael's voice again filled the bed room. Telling his son about life, love, and the things Michael thought were important for his son to know. We laughed and delighted in Michael's words. We stood in astonishment at the wonderful gift he had left for his son. 

Visitors

Pam and Michael's friend Nicky came and said their good byes. Cullan came down from the mountain. The neighbors came over. Andrea and Jill came. Brother Samp was here. Danny and Stephanie came to support Paul. I hugged all our friends comforting them in Michael's passing. As the day care parents came I let them know we had lost our beloved Michael. They were saddened for our loss, and relieved for his freedom. Dante and his Father Dan went in a wished Michael safe journey and said a prayer for him. At last the house was quiet except for Paul, Danny, Stephanie, Cullan, and me.

Good bye

Paul and I went in and hugged our Michael. 

We kissed him and told him how proud we were of him. 

He fought so hard against a monster he could not beat. 

We will always love and admire Michael for his humor, his strength, his loyalty, and his courage. 

Fly high my friend, fly free


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