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Old 12-06-2019, 8:20am   #1
Thomas
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Default Hi.

To say “It’s been a year” would be understatement.

It all started last December with my wife’s surgery. If you’ll recall she had a hysterectomy and some other repairs made to her woman parts. That all went well, or so we thought. More on that later. Two days post-surgery while still hospitalized we got the call she had breast cancer. The type of cancer she had was the most common and caught as early as it possibly could so the prognosis was as good as it could be considering we’re talking about cancer.

There wasn’t really much we could do with the cancer diagnosis but wait for her to heal up from her hysterectomy as she was too weak. Once she was on her feet we addressed the cancer. She was an excellent candidate for a lumpectomy rather than a mastectomy as the cancer was so small and had not spread. She initially went in with the mind set; “Take ‘em off!” which we were told is not an uncommon response to this. After a couple consultations she decided the mastectomy was the path forward. She was definitely going to need radiation therapy and a maintenance drug but chemotherapy was still an unknown. Once they remove the cancerous cells they send them to a lab where they evaluate whether she would benefit from chemo.

The lumpectomy went excellent and the radiation therapy went well also although she did experience some fatigue which is the most common side effect. And no chemo.

************************

As some of you recall I was heavily involved in the dog show thing. Training, breeding, showing etc. About ten years ago we met a young girl who was interested in handling one of our Dalmatians. We mentored, coached, trained, and traveled all over the place with this kid including a trip to Westminster. She and I got very close during these ten years. I watched her grow from a child to an 18 year old young adult. Despite my best efforts, she fell in with the wrong crowd in her later teen years and developed a drug addiction. I did everything I could as I was not her parent. I yelled, reasoned, screamed, and cried all in an attempt to somehow get her back on path. It didn’t work. She passed away this summer of a heroin overdose.

************************
A couple months after this I received a call from my mom who was with my dad at their lake home about 120 miles North of their house. Dad had fallen and hit his head on the concrete. As first she though he was OK, but about twenty minutes after the accident he stared to slur his speech so she called 911. He was rushed to a local hospital but they didn’t really have the facilities to deal with this. As such he was air-lifted to a hospital back home.

I was the first one to arrive where I met with a team of Doctors. Almost immediately they asked me if he had an end of life directive. I was absolutely floored. What were we dealing with here that they’re asking questions like this? He had bleeding on the brain and it was getting progressively worse. The only way to relieve the pressure was to drill into his skull which I knew with absolute certainty he would never ever allow. I informed the Doctors we needed to gather the family as this wasn’t a decision that was mine to make.

The family was all in complete agreement he would never even consider the measures they were proposing so we shifted to comfort care. Three days later he passed away peacefully with my sister and I at his side. I had been at the hospital since the initial trip down following the accident. I was spent in every sense of the word.

There has never been a better man to walk this planet. He was a husband of 61 years, a father, grandfather, Cement Finisher by trade, Army Vet and a 25 year volunteer at the VA hospital. And yes, he played guitar. We had our tough years he and I, and most of it was because I was such a knot head in my younger days. But those days were long behind us. Thursday we were on the phone and I was bitching about my truck. Sunday night he was dead. He was 88 years old and in pretty damn good health for a lifetime type 1 diabetic. This was a blow none of us were prepared for.


************************

Dogs. We’ve always had multiple dogs in our house and when you have more than one of varying ages it seems as if you’re always training a puppy and watching one grow old. One of our home-bred Dalmatians had a heart murmur which he’d had it his entire life. And while this isn’t something you’d want your dog to have it’s not a death sentence either. We also had a 16 year old Mini-Wire Dachshund who for his age was getting along OK.

In September I received a text from my wife to come to animal emergency ASAP. The Dal’s heart condition had suddenly worsened and he was in heart failure. She scooped up the Dachshund and brought him along because he was acting lethargic even for an elderly dog. Turns out the Dachshund had in infected tooth which spread to his organs. He had days to live. The Dal was another story. His heart was failing. They can medicate for this. MAYBE. But his quality of life was going to be severely impacted. If he had another episode like the one that got him to animal emergency and we were not home he’d die alone. The Vet told us he can’t recall ever seeing a dog’s condition deteriorate this quickly in all the years he’s been treating this.

We said goodbye to two dogs that day. They went together just as they lived. I cried for days.

************************
Following the loss of our two dogs my wife and I separated. She has purchased a house about an hour away, but five minutes from her daughter and granddaughter. Things are civil at this moment in time. If you’re wondering what the hell happened, so am I.

It’s been a tough year but I’m getting by. It’s a stupid cliché but one day at a time.

--T
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Old 12-06-2019, 8:31am   #2
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Jeeeeeezus, Thomas. for the loss of your father. for the loss of your protege.

Hope you and your wife are able to sort things out for the better, what ever that is.

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Old 12-06-2019, 8:32am   #3
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I don't know why life at times hurls the most awful shit possible at us.
Words of support and comfort only go so far but are helpful.

All I can say is I've experienced all of what you mentioned and it's heart breaking and crushes the spirit.

In a short period of time I lost the lady of my life and had her use our child against me. Then both my adopted sisters got mixed up with drugs and shortly after my step dad was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers. 2 years later I was wrestling him to the ground with an EMS team to sedate him and carry him out of his own home. 6 months later we buried him.

Plenty more awful shit I won't elaborate on...

What has given me hope is that, when the painful memories fade, I am a wiser and more content person.
Wishing the same for you brother.
Scott
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:14am   #4
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Jeezus, all that bad shit in ONE year??

Damnit man, take a vakashun next year and buy a jug of 'fuggettaboutit' to enjoy ........

best of luck, take care....

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Old 12-06-2019, 9:17am   #5
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Sounds like you and your family had a interesting time. Hopefully all is behind you and the future is better brother!
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:23am   #6
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Damn' man, that is rough. Hopefully today brings better times.
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:32am   #7
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What a stress and pain filled year. I hope the next years bring peace and happiness to you and your family.
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:32am   #8
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Sitting here for a half hour trying to think what to say. Most of us get a lifetime to absorb that much sadness - you got a year. Know that lots of good thoughts and prayers are heading your way.
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:47am   #9
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I don’t think I’ve slept in three months.



My escape has been this damn Bald Eagle photography and playing guitar. Helps.
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Old 12-06-2019, 9:53am   #10
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Damn Thomas. So sorry for your year man. I hope 2020 is better sir. I can relate to the separation/divorce thing. Just sucks man. Glad you checked in. Feel free to pm to vent, whatever. Best of luck moving forward.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:00am   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by TripleBlack View Post
Sitting here for a half hour trying to think what to say. Most of us get a lifetime to absorb that much sadness - you got a year. Know that lots of good thoughts and prayers are heading your way.
It took me a while as well.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:03am   #12
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Thomas, really sorry to read all that. The kicker for me was the last paragraph. Didn't see that coming...but I didn't see mine coming either. Ce la vie.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:07am   #13
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Welcome back. Sorry for the multiple losses.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:15am   #14
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So sorry to hear of all the issues you’ve had to face. I’m glad to hear you’re keeping busy and pray the coming year has blessings for you.
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Old 12-06-2019, 11:29am   #15
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Damn, I don't know what to say. That is some rough going. It's a good thing that you are strong.

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Old 12-06-2019, 12:13pm   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by simpleman68 View Post
I don't know why life at times hurls the most awful shit possible at us.
Words of support and comfort only go so far but are helpful.

All I can say is I've experienced all of what you mentioned and it's heart breaking and crushes the spirit.

In a short period of time I lost the lady of my life and had her use our child against me. Then both my adopted sisters got mixed up with drugs and shortly after my step dad was diagnosed with early onset Alzheimers. 2 years later I was wrestling him to the ground with an EMS team to sedate him and carry him out of his own home. 6 months later we buried him.

Plenty more awful shit I won't elaborate on...

What has given me hope is that, when the painful memories fade, I am a wiser and more content person.
Wishing the same for you brother.
Scott
Damn Scott same here. Still pretty fresh. I hope I can get to the last part soon.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:56pm   #17
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First, it's good to hear from you, Thomas. The fact you hadn't posted for awhile had me worried that things were not going well. We think about you a lot here, I'm sure no one has forgotten you. I hope 2020 brings you better things than 2019 did. Please keep us posted.
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Old 12-06-2019, 12:57pm   #18
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Sorry to hear about your year. Hopefully 2020 will be better Take care and may God bless you.
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Old 12-06-2019, 2:56pm   #19
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Wow. I really don't know what to say, other than, I'm sorry for your losses. I mean, Job has nothing on you in the way of suffering, although if your next post is about coming down with horrible skin rashes and boils, it wouldn't surprise me. Just know that a lot of us care about you and want you to get through this and come out whole on the other side.

Please take care of yourself and any remaining dogs, and if you need a shoulder or just some folks to beat on to take out your frustrations, the VB is here.

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Old 12-06-2019, 3:06pm   #20
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Pulling for you man.
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