Showing posts with label Bobby. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Bobby. Show all posts

Monday, March 14, 2011

In Peace

Yesterday and today were the days I thought I'd be storming the Manor House with prayer.  I wasn't sure what I was going to say so I found passages in the Bible, found suggested prayers for the dying.  I printed them out, I was ready to help ease his mind of any fear, tell him all about the love Jesus has for him, sit with him and be whatever comfort I could.   
After a doctor visit on Thursday that only delivered news of sadness, followed by a Friday afternoon visit with a hospice counselor, I think my Grandpa surrendered his weary body for the life everlasting.  My Dad, who was not just a son to Grandpa but a genuine friend, sat with him Friday evening and then shortly after Dad left, he breathed his last in this world and took his first in the next.

While I am sad that I wasn't able to see Grandpa "Snaz" yesterday and today, I am also happy that he is no longer suffering.  I could only have told him all about the love and forgiveness of our Saviour, now he'll know it first hand.  Through it all, I find gratitude all around and while I was sure my purpose was to sit with Grandpa and offer an abundance of prayer one last time, I am humbled reminded of God's timing.

We will miss our Father, Grandfather & Great-Grandfather  who was full of life, loving, caring, joyful, selfless, charismatic, spunky, and patient, among many other wonderful attributes.  Through the many tears we will also be happy for his new life.  A life where he can continue on without all the pains and burdens of our world.  We will look forward to seeing Grandpa and Grandma again one day.

Thank you all for your prayers and support to me and my family.  If you pray for the departed I would be very grateful for your continued prayers.

In the Peace of Christ and His Blessed Mother,


Friday, March 11, 2011


When I see that he's ringing me I never know which way to answer the phone, "HI Dad!" or Hi, Dad?"  I'm a bit reserved for the next question, "How's it going?"  That's the big tell sign.  Today, was a "Well, I guess it's going".  Or something like that.  All I can remember is that he didn't say it was going good, okay, or fine.

I learn today that last night my Dad brought my Grandpa to the emergency room.  He's not able to keep any food down and this has been going on for about two weeks, sometimes not so bad but lately it's been happening more and more.  All this makes Grandpa either scared to eat or he simply doesn't have any desire.  This is not a good sign that his anti nasuea medication isn't working anymore.  I can't remember if he's going to get a new medication that is sometimes prescribed to cancer patients or he is going to go off that one to try another. 

I do remember that the lasix medication is going to be stopped.  This is the medication that helps what little kidney function is left.  He's home now and there will be another doctor visit tomorrow to discuss medications along with hospice care.

Wait.  Think.  Wonder.  It's hard to be three hours away from family.  When can I get there one?  Will we be able to pray together?  What should we pray about? 

My Grandpa is old now, but he still thinks young.  He still has things he wants to do.  He wants to be baker.  He wants to travel.  He wants to watch great grandchildren play.  He wants to drive.  He wants to feel the warm sun on his face.  He wants to laugh.  He wants to reminisce.  He wants to smile.  He wants to feel good.

He does not want to die.

I don't know what to say.  I keep saying, praying it will make a difference.  

Days after I first penned this post I have one thing figured out, I am going to sit with him in a few days. 

Thank you dear husband for working extra hard these last days of the week to be home an extra day next week.

The oldest & youngest

Monday, January 24, 2011

Grandpa Update

It's been a week since I left the woods colder and covered with more snow that my own home.  When I left I was fearful it would be the last time I would see him.  My family keeps me informed on his progress and I speak to him every day, but it's not the same as being able to drop in and say hello, or spend hours sitting while he drifts in and out of sleep.  But I live three hours away with my own family, so we make due. 

The beginning of the week was hard.  It was hard for me to get back into my usual rhythm.  The little things of the littles seems to wear on my patience.  I knew it was me.  My husband, saintly this man, was ever so sweet and helpful by being home early, helping with everything (as he does anyway) and just being the rock that he is. 

I am ever so grateful for all of your prayers, thoughts and queries.  To say it means a lot to me would be an understatement.   My blog friends, IRL friends and family have been wonderful!  Then there are the friends who once were IRL friends and now more facebook friends or blog friends.  These friends I am referring to are my '89 Indian classmates.  (Yes, were were the proud Indians dressed in orange & black)  It's been years since I've seen most of them and  yet they touch my heart all the time.  They are The Kitchenista, The Prime Decorator, TJ, Warbird, Denise, Tina, The First BFF Jill, Shannon, Crystal, Kim, Deann, Melinda, and many others.  We grew up in a close knit, small community that I will forever cherish!

My Grandpa has done remarkable well this week!  He has progressed much more than I think his doctors thought he would, which isn't to say that he's out of the woods.  He still remains in heart and kidney failure, which more than likely won't change unless a miracle is performed.  He had kidney numbers that "horrified" my Dad.  We don't really know what that numbers are anymore because they aren't being tracked on a daily basis.  From what I have been told, when he heads towards complete kidney failure he will stop urinating, gain weight (water) and will be very sleepy.  So far, he's been taking off the weight he gained while in the hospital, continues to urinate but some days is very sleepy.  The sleepy part can be for any number of reasons, heart, PT, kidneys, or just plain tired.  His heart is beating away and from what I understand there haven't been any signs of additional angina (?).

On a side note....hospice care papers have been set up.  I understand and then I don't.  What I don't is what medications will or will not be given for the two main medical situations.   I will have to ask my Dad further.  Can I just add, my Dad has been given strength beyond measure while dealing with his own aches and pains.....He truly  walks with us.

Grandpa has elected to not take dialsys or have any additional heart surgeries.  He isn't really a good candidate for anything beyond the pacemaker that was put in in December and dialsys would leave him sick one day and in all day treatment the next day.  He's eighty-one and doesn't want to live that way. 

I continue to pray for more peace and less pain.


I started this post a few weeks ago have more to say but wanted to post this entry because I wanted to make sure to thank those of you who prayed for my Grandpa.

Over the January 14, 15, 16 weekend my family and I went to my hometown to see everybody. Everybody would be my Aunt Denise, her daughter Lynnzy from California and her son Shaun from North Dakota, my sister & her kids, my Dad & Sally, my two brothers and their girlfriends. We all spent time together at the nursing home as well as the hotel my Aunt stayed at.

When we arrived at the nursing home I was so shocked, Grandpa was walking around with a walker. Thinking back to the time before when he was having a hard time just dangling his feet from the bed.  Since  then he has continue to get better and to our surprise the doctor signed papers stating he would be okay going back to his assisted living home.  Grandpa didn't like being in the nursing home and was overjoyed to be able to go back to the assisted living home.  He went back on Friday of last week.  I am so thankful!  I can't believe how far he has come in such a short time.

He is one strong, strong man.  He has more than likely had several small heart attacks at home per what doctors have said.  And he has had a few major heart attacks pulling through each time.  I am amazed that he is doing so well.  All glory to God.  Really.

Again, I thank you for your prayers.  They mean a lot to me and my family.

All for God and for his glory.  In whatever you do, think of the glory of God as your main goal.
                                                                                                          ~ St John Bosco

Monday, January 3, 2011

Daily Bread

While I was away I had a chance to look around the web a bit.  By chance (?) and within minutes I found two people who had this verse posted on their blog/website.   Jeff Cavins recites it to his children on their way out the door for school and Julie posted it on her blog.  I guess you could say that somebody was telling me this was exactly what I was looking for my own children.

The Lord bless you and keep you!
The Lord let his face shine upon you, and be gracious to you!
The Lord look upon you kindly and give you peace! ~ Numbers 6:22-26

My 1000 gifts numbers 338 -  366:

Having a babysitter available within minutes
Driving safely in rain, snow, & ice
Your prayers
Praying with Grandpa
Hard conversation with Grandpa & Him shining in
Spending four days in the hospital
Having dinner with my Dad
Dad who says it's okay to call St Elizabeth's
Sleeping on a cot for three nights
Snoring sounds
Doctors with sensitive hearts
Old stories & memories
New stories
Sounds of my kid's voices
Sound of Adam's voice
My sister
Coming home to a clean house (better than it was left)
My sister & Dad living close to the hospital
Home with my own family
An understanding husband
All who ask & offer to pray
Grandpa having slightly better kidney numbers
Grandpa getting out of bed for a small amount of time
Kids asking for me to read Bible books
Early fragrant birthday presents
Good night of sleep

Consider joining Ann as we count our way to 1000 gifts?

holy experience

Saturday, January 1, 2011

The Year of Prayer ~ Day One

I sit listening to what sounds like peaceful sleep but I know kidneys and a heart are battling.  Battling like no other battle thus far in his 81 years of life.  Is his tiny 5'3" body be in a repair slumber?  Or is it a body that's tired and had enough?   

Tonight is my last night sleeping at the hospital.  I have very mixed emotions about leaving.  I will be happy to enter into His house tomorrow to pray.  It will be a joyous reunion with the family I had a hand in creating.  But I will also be so sad to say good-bye to the man who was so instrumental in helping my parents stumble through the end of their teenage years with the creation of me.

He's old now and his body is tired but he's not ready to leave us.  Even though the doctors have spoke the words more times than I have fingers and toes in the last three days, it's not easy to face the real end.  For him or us.   At least these are my thoughts today.  It's coming we don't know exactly when, only He does but the doctors have all said the bag of tricks is almost empty.

I don't know what it's like to watch a person leave this world from heart and kidney failure.  I know a little about cancer, I know that there is so much pain you feel bad enough for them that you just want them to feel better.  Even if that means without you.  I never known first hand a persons painful heart attack.  I've only known people to have had a heart attack and then go.  I am learning a struggle with heart and kidney failure, it's not easy.  So far it's a long road filled with many drug options all of which seem to have some effect on either the kidneys, or the heart, or both.  It's all a fine line which is very blurred right now.

I leave tomorrow.  I am so sad.  What if this is the last time we get to talk about all the wonderful crazy things we did?  Laugh about me driving the back roads starting at 11 years old with him as the passenger and my sister in the back seat.  He snored last night and today I remind him of how my sister and I used to record their snoring on tape recorders so we could prove they did.  Thinking of us running the aisles of their grocery store grabbing all the Popsicles our little bodies would allow before we got sick.  We talk about the New Yorker and how I drove it to Fargo with my learners permit, Grandpa next to me, playing cards with my sister in the back seat.  I could go on and on.  My grandparents were so much a part of our lives when we were growing up.

Grandma passed away when I was 14 and my sister 11 and she was only 52.  And to this day he talks about about everything going to pot after she died.  He told me today that I would call him dida (dee-da) in Croatian and that my Great-Grandma  lived with him on and off when they were first married. 

We watched a few of our home movies and a slide show on my computer today.  We also watched part of the Orange Bowl.  Hannah laughed with him and he joked about keeping her ladybug pillow pet.  We all laugh day at his wonderful ability to joke and give the nurses a hard time. 

His stories are mixed in time and I piece them together.  I know what he needs almost like my own Dad does.  He calls for me in the middle of the night, just like he does when Johnny stays with him.  And today he tells me about the things on the check list.  He start talking about getting a family car and how it's not necessary.  I listen and try and follow along.  Then he says something and it clicks about what kind of check list he's talking about. 

My Dad has already told me about the check list and Grandpa has said a funeral home service will suffice.  Ever since, I've been praying he'll come back.  Now we talk about the list.  I tell him not to worry about money, what kind of car, etc.  But I ask if he'd like to have his funeral at the same church that his brothers, sisters and parents did.  He says this will be okay.  He also tells me that my Aunt also prays for this and that she has inquired.  When he tells me that the church will be okay I know Jesus is working on bringing him home.  He wants all his children with him. 

Then we pray.  He follows my prayer. 

And now, in the dark of the end of the day, just like the dark of the start of the day, we are alone in the room.  He sleeps. I type.  He sleeps.  I cry.  He sleeps.  I pray. 

The Year of Prayer ~ Day One.

Our family Christmas 12-18-10
Four Generations

Friday, December 31, 2010


I took this photo almost a year ago.  When I took it I had the intentions of posting about my Grandpa, thinking then, our time with him here on Earth would be precious.  I started the post a number of times, trying to capture all the memories and stories he told us.  I never could find the right format I wanted to lay the story out in.  Now, I just want the words down somewhere, somehow, no matter how jumbled or out of order they may be.  And so, that's the way the posts about Grandpa Snaz, Robert, Bob, Bobby will be, random thoughts, random everything.

Yesterday, December 30 my phone rang at 8:50 AM, I thought it was probably my friend Susan.  {We like to catch up in the morning if we can.}  Instead, it was my Dad, when he calls I mostly worry.  My Dad has been at Grandpa's side during this horrible health journey.  He sleeps at the hospital, drives him to his appointments, knows where he's been and what the road ahead might bring.  

"How's is going Dad?" 
"Not good, Grandpa is having a heart attack.  He's in the emergency room".
"Should I come?"
"I think so"
That's bad.  My Dad hasn't ever told me to come.  I also know that the only way he would tell me to come is if he thinks it could be the last time I would be able to come

I made it to my hometown by 2:15 PM, driving through rain and then snow with freezing rain for a base.  Praise God for my safe arrival and thanks to all who prayed. 

Grandpa is small in the hospital bed, curled up even smaller, sleeping finally.  Upon awaking he immediately knew who I was, despite all the morphine.  And for the rest of the day he was in and out of sleep or a heavily drugged state all of which was good at this point as the night prior and morning were filled with a pain like no other.

In talking with him this morning he said he has nurses with him at his assisted living residence all through the night prior.  Then finally at about 7:00 AM he said he couldn't handle it any longer and needed to go in.  They brought him via ambulance.  The doctor today confirmed he had a "big heart attack"  Most likely still is.

Here's the rundown:

  • He is in heart failure, kidney failure. 
  • Had a CT scan yesterday without contrast {contrast would wipe out his kidney function completely}.   
  • The CT scan showed fluid in his left (?) lung, enlarged heart with possible fluid surrounding it.
  • At this time he is unable to have the fluid drained and for many reasons most likely will not have it drained.
  • He was unable to void but a ultrasound showed urine in his bladder, therefor a catheter was put in this morning.
  • He was taken off morphine about 9:00 PM last night as his breathing became too shallow.
  • He was off the morphine last evening and remained without pain all evening.  This morning the pain in his right arm became too intense, therefor,
  • He was given nitroglycerin this morning and a dose of morphine rather than a drip, as with the drip his breathing became too shallow
  • This AM nitroglycerin tablets were not effective and is now on a nitro drip that has been upped three times in the last hour. 
  • He currently is not feeling pain and resting
  • He will have a blood transfusion as soon as the blood can be matched {I thought this was as simple as getting some from a cabinet.  He's been waiting for the labs to find a match for almost 2.5 hours.}  Note to self:  donate blood
  • More than likely he is still having a heart attack from yesterday that is being pain managed through meds
He is scared.  He is scared.  He is scared.

We are sad.

I spent the night with him here at the hospital and hope to be able to spend a few more days before returning home to my family.  I pray that I will be able to come back soon. 

Would you please keep him in your prayers?  Thank you and God Bless.
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