It’s me… again.. sorry I’m not Adele!
I took some time off, a hiatus if you will. My birthday was approaching, along with the one year marker of Steve’s death just around the corner. I wasn’t sure how it would feel this year compared to last year.
This time last year, I was living through the reality of Steve’s decline. This year, I went on a trip.
Every week that Steve was on hospice, it seemed like every Monday, we made or had a significant change. During his second week home, it was the week prior to Easter, so we held a family egg hunt here at the house. Our son brought his electric recliner here to help him get up off the chair or into it. He was having such a hard time – not that he was heavy, but he was too weak and could no longer support himself, so having to move him, or help him into his chair, it was a lot for me. We all tried so hard to make him feel that he was whole, and could enjoy not being totally bedridden. On 3/28/2021, it was the last time he would get out of the bed on his own.
We celebrated Easter Sunday with Alaskan crab legs. He was too week to crack his own, so I did it for him.
The Monday after Easter, the visiting nurse installed a catheter. This was for several reasons:
- He always felt like he had to pee due to pressure but he didn’t really have to. I would assist for what seemed like hours with his portable urine device, only to find out he didn’t pee but then would wet the bed. Sometimes, prior to this, at night instead of waking me, he would go on his own. Then afterward, sometimes he would knock his bottle off the table spilling it on our floors… authentic hardwood floors that had been part of the house since the day it was built. I had laid down some disposable bed pads every night in case it happened again.
- The catheter was a Godsend. But at the same time, while I knew it was making my life easier, I also knew, it was one more sign that we were closer to Steve’s end. Luckily for us, they were able to insert it because as his tumors grew, eventually, they might not be able to due to blockage.
I’m not sure how he felt about this. I’m sure he knew it wasn’t a good sign. But daily he would tell me, “Honey, we’re going to be okay.”
I’m not sure if he said this to protect me, as if I didn’t know he was dying or if he always chose to be positive or if his stubbornness would keep him going.
My response was always, “I know we will.” But at the same time in the back of my mind, I’d think I’m going to be okay but in his sense, he too would be okay. I wasn’t in physical pain as he was and his death would eliminate him from all pain.
Saturday, April 24, 2021… Steve ate his last semblance of real food. It was an Italian sandwich from one of his favorite sandwich shops and I got to record him saying “It’s the best.”
His voice was weak but his spirit was strong.
Hello, I’ll be back next week, as the emotions of this day and the week to come from 2021, are enough for me right now.