Thursday, March 13, 2008


I've gone back and forth about whether to post anything about this. I'm still not entirely sure, but for the most part this blog is read mostly by friends, whether I've "met you" in real life or not. And friends are there for you when things are not always the best.

Big Daddy is dying.

He has been in hospice care for about three weeks. This was after months of outpatient and inpatient care related to his metastatic prostate cancer and other health conditions. For a while, it looked like he could re-hab his leg and get back to a normal life, but his other health conditions decided otherwise - mostly his lungs, even though he quite smoking in the 1940s, apparently the damage never quite goes away. Big Daddy's quality of life has deteriorated significantly, and he finally decided that he's had enough of hospitals, doctors, medicines, tube and wires, tests, and interventions. The longer I see him in this condition, the easier I think it will be to finally let go. He has had 90 years, and been hale and healthy through most of them. We have been fabulously lucky to have had that time with him. And I am grateful.

Here is a video of him from last summer, in better days: Big Daddy and Sam.


MJW said...

The longer I see him in this condition, the easier I think it will be to finally let go. He has had 90 years, and been hale and healthy through most of them.

I know there is very little that anyone can say that will be sufficient, let alone helpful. In fact, some of us (meaning me) might even say the wrong thing; but what you wrote above tells me that you have discovered the only practical way to deal with this terrible situation. I had to go through the same thing in 2002 with my dad, except I only had five days in which to get used to the idea and then come to some vague semblance of terms with it. Maybe faster is better, but it sure as heck didn't seem like it at the time.

I'm thinking positive thoughts for you.

LL said...

:smooch: :kotc: :hug:

Jeni said...

Many of us could probably sit here and tell you in an almost serene voice too -"Oh, been there, done that." And it would be true too in that many of us have been down that road. Like MW, I only had roughly a week to "get ready" before I lost my Mom and yes, it was a blessing it happened that way. But... no matter what the circumstances -short duration of illness or lingering -it makes no never mind as in the end, it still hurts like hell to lose a loved one. My kids and I are dealing with a similar situation now with my Dad's "baby" sister who will be 91 next month. Yes, it would be a blessing on some levels if things would end now or soon and yet, the mere thought of the day coming when she will no longer be here, even though mentally, she is no longer here now, it is still a bridge I'm not yet ready to cross.
The best I can offer you is that I will keep you in thought and prayers as you face the days ahead and Peace be with you.

Dianne said...

I send hugs, I'll be thinking of you.

Beth said...

Wow, that video really hit home with me and I'm not sure why, but I'm all emotionally wrecked right now. My father died at 73 and he was in such a state when he did that I was at peace with it. I was happy for the pain and constancy of misery to be over. I hope that is what it is like for you.

Big Daddy must be one heck of a guy. And wow, the fact that he's 90 on that tape. Just amazing.

Cyber hugs to you because you are truly a part of this internet world that I treasure. Yield to whatever happens. Resistance just makes it worse, Sweetie.

Jim Donahue said...

My thoughts are with you.

fermicat said...

Thank you all for the kind words and good thoughts.

Kathleen said...

I was hoping that your personal issues weren't related to Big Daddy and possible failing health.

I have to say Big Daddy looks damn fine for 90 years old.

I'm very sorry. I agree with Jeni, it doesn't matter how long you have to get used to the idea or how short, it still hurts like hell to lose someone you love.


Dave said...

From what I can tell, Big Daddy is going out wtih his soul and dignity intact. He chose to go to a hospice.

"[H]e finally decided that he's had enough."

He's ready, it is twilight, going on to dark.

Dave said...

I just remembered the last part of that last sentence in my comment: and on to light.

fermicat said...

kat - true, he looks damn good for 90.

dave - a very nice sentiment. And yes, it helps that this is happening on his own terms.

wa11z said...

Here's a hug. Hope it helps.

fermicat said...

wa11z - thank you. It does.