Tearful good-bye, Joyful beginnings, and more hard work

I haven’t posted much lately because my Father died rather suddenly on June 16th.  He was 69 years young.  I say “young” because he was always such a vibrant man, casting irons in so many fires, you never knew what he was going to achieve next.  About four years ago, Dad was diagnosed with Myelofibrosis.  In a nutshell, this disease causes your bone marrow to scar over, keeping it from creating new red blood cells.  The farther along the scaring (or fibrosis) gets, the worse the anemia until you have to start having blood transfusions.  Dad had about 105 of them in the last 3-4 years, getting closer and closer together until sometimes he couldn’t last one week between them.  This whole process causes a lot of other problems, but the worst for Dad was the fatigue (and increasing pain).  This disease just sapped all the energy out of him until he couldn’t do any of the things he enjoyed doing every day.  A few days before he passed, he was in and out of the hospital – and back in again, finally to be transferred over to the Hospice unit where we had hoped they would make him feel a bit more comfortable and give us another couple weeks with him.  Sadly, less than 24 hours later, he just gave up.  Or his heart did, or his spleen.  Whatever it was, we didn’t expect it that fast.

It was worst for my brother, Randy.  He was there at the bedside while Mom had just stepped out, ready to go home for the evening, and I’d stayed home trying to get some things done around the house before returning to work the next day.  Randy and his wife, Carol, had been under a huge strain already because their daughter, Holly (my niece) was scheduled to get married on June 23rd, just one week later.  Now, not only did they have 50 million last-minute wedding plans to contend with, but also planning out Dad’s funeral.  Mom, of course, was devestated by Dad’s death, but still did what she could in terms of making preparations.  I offered, and did, whatever they would have me do at that time.

Dad’s visitation was incredible…355 people came through the funeral home to pay their respects.  I don’t think there’s a soul on earth who didn’t like my Dad!  I’m not sure how many made it to the funeral mass the next morning (work and regular life-stuff gets in the way, understandably), but we know about 75 guests made it to the luncheon afterwards.

Poor Mom!  The day after the funeral was her birthday!  She was getting sympathy cards right along with the birthday wishes.  She didn’t like that one bit!  Randy and I both had gotten her cards and flowers, but she didn’t want to go out or do anything, so we sort of just “ignored” her birthday this year.  That was Thursday the 21st.

And on to the Joyful Beginnings!  Friday was the rehersal for Holly and Kevin’s wedding on Saturday!  She was such a beautiful bride!  I was so honored to do the first reading at her wedding mass!  The whole wedding party did a great dance routine at the reception.  Holly play-acted like she didn’t know what was going on when it started, but she was in cahoots with them all along.  I tried to video-tape it, but the lighting was terrible.  Still, I did get some footage for her to remember it by!

Then it was back to work after being off for about a week, and boy is it busy again there!  Babies galore!  (I’ve ignored calls on my days off asking if I wanted to work extra!  I still have too much to do around the houses!).

And, speaking of houses, we’re still getting things together, slowly but surely at the new one.  Some of the furniture I ordered FINALLY came in, though I’m still waiting on other things I’ve ordered.  Lyle’s been busy working Monday through Friday at his new job, so he only has Saturday and Sunday to work on the fence, and the last couple weekends were pretty well shot from the other events we’ve had.  But, as of tonight, the fence is secure so the doggies can run free and we don’t have to physically take them out to exercise!  We still have some “finish” work to do, but at least for now, we can rest and let the pups enjoy the yard at their leisure!

So, what’s next?  Well, I will do what I can to help Mom and Randy settle Dad’s estate, starting tomorrow.  There are sooooooo many forms to help complete and papers to sort through and addresses to obtain, and on and on and on.  There’s an ercoupe to be sold and no bill of sale on hand.  Nevermind the physical belongings that Mom wants out of the house NOW, and all the other stuff that will take months (probably YEARS) to actually get rid of!  And in between, we still have stuff at the old house to move, then that place needs fixed up before we put it up for sale.  Good Lord, does it ever end??  At least it keeps me off the computer most of the day!  Unfortunately, my favorite hobby (scrapbooking) has also taken a hit.  I’ve still got pictures back to December (of the pets) to scrap, on up to the present.  <Sigh>  Oh well.  Gives me something to look forward to, I guess!  😉

 

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