February 27

So much can change in a month, two months…

I haven’t updated this blog in a while, but in October, I posted this post (If I thought things were crazy in March) back then with vague motions towards what I will be talking in today’s post.

In June, my husband was diagnosed, unexpectedly, with a terminal illness and we were given a prognosis of two weeks without treatments or significantly less than a year with treatment. We started treatments immediately as there were a lot of things we had to get handled, in addition to his hope to see our son graduate this May. The treatments were hard on his system and it caused problems for him, including drastic weight loss due to loss of appetite, etc.

Unfortunately, as is the nature with his illness, while things were going well for a while, it started turning in December. We changed treatment plans to a plan they felt would be more aggressive and might give him a few more months. The new treatment improved his quality of life in December, allowed him to enjoy foods that he no longer enjoyed; he had more energy and was enjoying spending time with friends and family. We had a wonderful Christmas surrounded by family and friends and thought things were going better and things seemed to be turning to a semblance to normal. I was able to return to writing and working on projects for the future.

That was two months ago. A little more than a month ago, Jan. 11, my dad’s birthday in heaven, things started the downhill slope. Earlier that week, Dan had his second treatment of the new drug. We noticed he wasn’t doing so hot, but figured it was his immune system fighting the bad in his system, like it was supposed to. He ended up in the hospital mid-month and the day before they released him, we were told that if he didn’t show improvement in 24 to 48 hours, he’d be going into hospice. At that time, he did improve, enough to be cranky and stubborn and insistent on coming home and he was cleared to do so, but wasn’t allowed to be home alone any more, which frustrated him. I worked from home three days of the week while his mom was here the other two days. He came home on Tuesday and I’m glad he was able to come home one final time because a week later he was admitted to hospice.

It was not an easy decision, not by a long shot, to make the call on Sunday to say he was getting worse, to say we needed help, to say he needed to be taken to the hospice care facility we had decided on. However, I knew it was for the best. We couldn’t care for him on our own, nor could we keep him comfortable easily on our own. Ultimately, it turned out to be the right decision. Dan passed away early morning on Jan. 27, a month ago, at 42 years old.

The last three months have been a blur, more so the last two. Knowing he was going to pass, but not expecting him to pass as soon as he did, didn’t make it easy at all. All the decisions that had to be made, relatively quickly, after his death and still to this day have been just as crazy. I’m thankful that I have a job that was very flexible with everything happening so suddenly and for having a support group of family and friends that have been pillars for me during this time.

It’s hard to believe that a month has passed since he died. It’s hard to believe in just a few days it will be a month since we buried him. I miss him. I miss not being able to talk to him. I miss not being able to watch shows with him.

The silliest thing brought me to tears this weekend. Dan loved The Grand Tour. He was so excited when he saw it was coming out in November and couldn’t wait to watch it and watched each episode the day it came out. He thoroughly enjoyed it and would watch it while I was at work then would watch it with me when I got home and again and again. Sadly, he didn’t get to watch the last episode which came out the day he died. I finally got around to watching it, then started the series from the beginning and that made me cry. You can see the intro here: https://www.dailymotion.com/video/x53mjqo_ford-mustang-intro-the-grand-tour-s01e01_auto

I think, the biggest relief for me, is knowing that he’s not suffering. Watching him be in pain, watching him deteriorate so fast the last month was the hardest thing for me. It was the hardest thing for all of us. And while I cried while writing all of this, this was easier to write than watching him suffer the last two weeks.

This is why there has been so much silence on this blog since last May. Life got complicated and was going to get more complicated before it gets better – and it’s not at the getting better stage yet, but it will eventually and I know that. I know it’s going to take time and it will take time for me to be able to get to writing again, but I plan to take things as I can – either in small steps, or really small steps, but I will keep moving forward.

See you around on the next post.


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Posted February 27, 2017 by Grace Snoke in category "Self Reflection
  • Mike Burda

    I remember waking the day after my mother passed. I walked outside and everything was normal. I wanted to scream. I wanted everyone to stop. Everything was not normal. Everything had completely changed. I could not understand the rest of the world did not see this.

    And then a day passed and a week, a month, a year and now it has been over 5 years (soon to be 6). This is what I know from my mother’s passing. There is nothing to know. There are no right answers, there are no wrong answers. Everyone grieves in their own way and in their own time and at their own pace.