Just Sharin', My Grief Challenges

Kidney Stone Situation August 19, 2017


Oh my gracious !!!  I had 3 posts ready, but last week I posted #2 instead of #1. Oh well !!!

During my kidney stone situation, I felt awful for being mopey, for having no energy, but mostly, for letting my self-imposed  guilt bother me the whole time.  I did not want to complain or even silently moan about my aches when I witnessed what Shawn had to endure ???  My 3 millimeter stone was nothing compared to Shawn’s deep tissue burns. Why did this little jewel knock me down, so much so that I could not finish the school year ???

I could sit in my recliner or curl up in my bed, everything else caused more pain.  I was so frustrated that I could not win over the pain.                                 Years ago, when I was dealing with Fibromyalgia and Chronic Fatigue, I had been told to make sure there was no television is my bedroom, no phone~~~nothing that would make my mind think instead of sleep. In-fact, I was told that the only place I should allow myself to rest, was my bed. No napping in my chair.

How glad I was during my kidney situation for my comfortable recliner. I did not feel like working on Christmas ornaments, so I watched shows on you-tube about: castle building, the monk lifestyle, various mysteries.

On one show  a comment was made that struck me. Truth be told, I have no idea what type of show it was. The words that struck a raw nerve: “…that appalling desperation of wanting to keep the dying/dead person with you”        Those words were exactly the issue that had been piercing my heart.

It is a strange feeling as time moves forward and relationships change,     that wanting of the dead person to not be forgotten,             another type of letting go,  facing the loss, again, all the while watching as others move forward, past me. What is my problem ???

 A question that was asked to me, “Was Shawn in misery ?” This person commented that Shawn must have been exhausted. She told me to think of Shawn in heaven. He gets to sing in God’s choir, he is not hurting anymore. Be happy for him.

 Moment after moment, during my kidney stone situation, my mind  flashed back with self imposed guilt, about Shawn’s last days and the decisions I was involved in.  Will I ever get to the point where I do not hate myself for my part in Shawn’s last days ???  My counselor has had to re-explained my strong sense of responsibility, that is why I have such a hard time working through issues.

On the day of my kidney stone removal surgery: I was given a knotted glove that had been filled with hot water.                                               This brought back memories about what I had done with the gloves during Shawn’s hospital days. You see, Shawn’s body would get very hot. It was difficult using the ice packs from the hospital, on Shawn’s head. Somehow, I figured out that ice fit neatly into hospital gloves. I could place a glove carefully on Shawn’s head, and it would stay, giving him some cool relief. When Shawn went in for surgeries, I would write notes, to the medical team, on the gloves and ice packs.  I am thankful for the cute photos I had taken, at those difficult moments.                        So when I was given a warm glove to get my veins ready for the IV, it made for a strange Shawn connection.   

Before my surgery, I had given Bob “the” note of what to do if things did not go well. I believe I told Mom and Melissa what to do. I wanted all 3 on the same page.  I also informed my doctor that I wanted some piece of the kidney stone, if not the whole thing, or at-least a photo of it.                                             I made sure the anesthesiologist knew I did not want to wake up during surgery. I still remember, vividly, the details of waking up during my broncoscopy.

 It was time to be rolled to surgery. For some reason as I was being rolled down the hall, I was remembering when Shawn’s body was being rolled  down the long corridor, away from me forever~~~I started crying. I told the anesthesiologist I was getting too sad, missing my son. I asked if he would just let me go to sleep. I just wanted relief from my grief agony.  

 I remember my doctor waking me up and telling me there was no stone. I fr*eaked !!! I was worried no one would believe me, and what would I tell work ? My doctor reminded me that the ultra sound showed the stone. He did give me a photo, it showed the damaged tissue of where the stone had been stuck. A stent was put in place, as a precaution. I believe the stent must have been on the damaged tissue, the pain those 7 days was, aaawful !!!

You may find yourself wondering what  in the world is this a photo of ? My cup and strainer, I used for 33 days, during my kidney stone situation. The flowers were added for prettiness.     The green thing is the stent that was put in place, for a week, even though the stone was gone.                                When the doctor was removing the stent, I asked if I could have it. He said, ” sure.”  The nurse had to pick herself up off the floor. She was rather perturbed at my request. Her breathing noises made that ever so clear.    As a matter of fact,   I have learned that not many folks know what this type stent looks like.       AND a funny thing:  I was the first to ask for the stent, according to the disgruntled nurse.  Go figure.

For quite some time, I have been stymied as to how much water to drink; with so many opinions ?  My doctor was explaining to me that since there was no stone to test, being over 50 and this was my first kidney stone, he was not worried about the why or how it happened. He just wanted me to make sure to drink plenty of water. I asked how much water is enough ? He said that any time my urine is darken than the color of straw, I need more water, plain and simple.

I know I have been pretty blunt in this post, but maybe someone learned something new ???




Precious Cuddlz !!!





My Grief Challenges

***Warning*** March 1, 2014

This post is completely different from the one I had been working on, throughout this past week. I guess it was just the direction I was suppose to take, for today.  This has been one of the hardest posts to write. In time, I might be able to go back and fix it, for now, this is the way it will be.   Just a different approach. You are being warned.


Mom you made through an un-b.day.   672dcba404b7edc25087c229351f52aa

 Shawn, barely., it was such an awful week.

 Mom, tell me what made it so challenging.

 Well, at the beginning of the week, I finally put it together, that asthma, grief and menopause make not a B.F.K.

 Okay~~~?~~~ Mom, what in the world are you talking about ?

Well, Shawn, the first 3 are pretty much awful, very wearing and I don’t have any choice of their presence in my life.. Whereas, a B.F.K. hot, on ice or blended is an enjoyable treat, while seldom had.

 Mom, you crack me up.            Did you go to work, even on Friday?

 Yes, I put my bus driverness on and concentrated on the task at hand

 So, Mom, what was so hard to deal with, this week ?

 Shawn, it was like someone slammed a brick, into my face. You see, last year, at this time, there was still hope for you to recover. Regarding this years un-b.day, on a Friday-for me the worst day of the week, since your death., just plain yucky.  Then, when  I realized I will never get another b.day phone call from you……..                              “Happy birthday”. I read and heard many times, on Friday,  I don’t think folks realize that there is no happiness, in this kind of un-b.day. I do appreciate their thoughtfulness, just can’t get out of this sad rut.          What do folks mean when they say it?   Sorry, Shawn I am just ???  out of sorts.

 I have an idea, Mom…….. let’s look back over this past year. I want you to see how God has brought you through some very tough moments. 

Here goes, Mom, now pay attention. It is important to me that you get this.

Remember the first time you saw me, after the fire ? All the swelling. There was not an area, on me, you could touch, so everyone thought. I loved it when you realized  I could feel your gentle touch on my cheek. Others seemed uncomfortable, when you told them. how I loved it, but you didn’t let that stop you. You found a way to let me feel your touch of preciousness. Mom, You did that !!!

  Mom, unlike me, sleep has never been your friend. I know all those early mornings when you crept so quietly, into my room and stood by my bed, in the dark. I heard the prayers and felt the tears that landed on my wrappings. I had heard your noiseless yawns. It was those times I had the best rest.  

 Remember each surgery  that happened when it was you turn to visit me ? I know you counted them.   You always followed  me, as my  bed was rolled to the double doors. You encouraged me, you made sure I knew I was not alone. You told me you would be praying.. Each time, as the elevator  doors shut, I would hear, “Shawn, I love you !!!”  I had such comfort, at those moments.     All those times, when I was brought back into my room, you were vigilant. at calming me, for hours and hours.  I remember the many times, you were so exhausted, almost falling asleep on your feet. You refused to leave my side. Melissa had said many times how I hated being alone, she was right.  Thank you, for not leaving my side, even though there were many times you needed a break.                                                                                                      

 Okay, Mom, I may be using words, the way you do-a lot of them. Wait, did I get some of your Chatty K-ness ???   

 Here is something that I totally loved. When my room was being stocked. You would do the putting away, hoping to make things easier for the staff.   I remember when I was in the cardio-chair, and what were you doing ? Cleaning my bed, frame and all. Who else would have thought of that ?

Think back when the head nurse thought it would be good  to have things in my room,  that were dear to me. Your challenge was no nails, or anything that would cause damage to the walls. I hope you took pictures, so my children can know what you did for me, and how creative your ideas had been. I heard the nurses try to tell you, but Mom, you don’t take compliments, well. I, also know the times others had been brought into my room, for ideas, the staff had been so pleased at what you had come up with.  I heard the Kidney doctor tell you, on her last visit, how great of a job you had done, in my room. She had been so kind  in coming to say “Goodbye”.   Mom, she knew, how bad  things were for me.     

What about the hours you  spent  painting the Donald Duck, on the window. wpid-wp-1445814677457.jpeg Thanks to the nurse who drew the outline for you. ~~~Side note~~~ Oh!, remember the Stretch Think drawing program we did, during our home school years ?  Melissa and I could NEVER figure out your drawings.  You were so cute- you thought you had done such a great job. You did try, I’ll give you that.~~~anyway,  I know the music, that painting night, was not your favorite, and  the volume chosen was way too loud for you, but I rested so good.  You may not realize it, but you did have a way to calm me, even when you were not by my bed but taking care of the room.

 I remember one time, in my cardio-chair, when you put up the picture of Zoro our first Chihuahua,. You said Bob had found  the picture and he thought I would love it. I did !!!    Remember how big I smiled and nodded ?  I  was remembering the day we bought Zoro. He lived in Troutdale. He was afraid of the owner’s husband. I remember the car ride—in Charmer-mom you are so silly-naming your cars. Anyway, Melissa and I were in the back seat. Zoro took  to us, so fast.      I remember a few years later, when we had moved to Oregon City, it was a very hot day. I had taken Zoro for a walk/run. He did not look good when we got home. He survived.  He was funny, how he would do sneak attacks and bite the back pant leg of visitors.     Zoro         

 Mom, just a couple more.         I don’t want you to get sad, but I need you to know, I heard your cries for me while I was having  cardiac situations. I know it was hard for you to watch my limp body as CPR was being performed. I am thankful for the times-when you were there,  You made sure you were as close to me as you could be, even though you had been asked to wait in the hall.. Do you know how much it meant to me ?     I know it was hard for you, but Mom,  I  cannot imagine you doing anything else.     

Hey Mom, something else, you did  not crowd others out. You, always made sure ALL, were welcomed , in my room for visits. Thank you.

You went through some hard talks, towards my end,. You were wanting to give me every possible chance to pull through-within your power ???—I know you had been told you were being selfish—keeping the machines going. I know how hard last Easter was for you. I want you to know that I knew you never gave up, I knew how hard you fought for me.  No, Mom.. I never once thought of you as being selfish. You were just being exactly the kind of Mom God knew I needed, especially at that time.  I do not want you to take another breath thinking I thought you didn’t do all you could. for me. 

 I know we had many years of separation, but never,  did you give up, not  then, and not during my situation, for that I am glad.  You endured many talks, about needing to let me go. I never once felt you give up.  I know what you went through. I tried to let you know. At the end I was so tired , but I knew you would figure out what I was trying to tell you, with the movement of the corners of my mouth, or the movement of my eyes-even though my eye lids were mostly stitched closed.   I, especially,  loved it when you saw my reaction, on my last Thursday-during Melissa’s kidney class, well, her detailed explanation of the kidneys. You were sad, but Mom, remember how you and Melissa,  laughed so hard, at my face twitches- no it wasn’t disrespectful. It was a special moment for the three of us. Please remember it,

 Last.  Before I died, you kissed my forehead. I knew it was you, I felt such a pleasant calm, in your sadness. I know how hard it was for you to watch me die. You knew when it actually happened, that will always be our moment, as was the day of my birth. I think there were so many goings on-probably to help the family sort of , be sidetracked.,  they may not have realized when it happened, but I know you knew when I left.

Mom, I know you have some emotions to deal with. I know there are a lot of  issues to work through, but I am going to need you to hand this pain to God. He and I need you to be a Grandma .  I know you are up to this next task.   I realize that right now, when you see my children, you are reminded of what you have lost. In time their antics will be sweet reminders of me.

Mom, as you read back over this un-b.day post, I want you to see the person  I was blessed to have as MY MOM !!!   Maybe God will see fit for you to always remember the sound of my voice when I would say, “Love You Mom”.edb82c397aa2fadb0055cec13a43cc7c