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  1. and that's no joke- he was an April fools baby! I think he is sending jokes our way... Went to cemetary last night (as we knew today would be rainy here) and released balloons. There are four grandsons (11, 9, 6, 4) - quite entertaining when they are all together. Two balloons got stuck in the power lines and the 4 y/o said "I'll go get them" and darted off toward the road. So my sister darted off after him. My 9 y/o knocked my other son's balloon off into the wind before he was ready so they started squabbling (the norm for them). the 6 y/o enthusiastically sang Happy Birthday for all the world to hear. Dad always sat back and chuckled at all that chaos. Then at 12:30AM - my 11 y/o son's alarm clock accidentally went off so that gave us a good scare and we were fumbling around trying to figure out what was needing to be turned off. I was wide awake for a while after that so I have had some good quiet time of smiles, tears and reflection (albeit in the dark). I am thankful to have had a great Dad and a fun "papa" to the boys.
  2. I know what you mean! For some reason lately I have been thinking about the day the doctor suggested hospice and the initial meeting with the hospice group. Honestly I think that was the worst 30 minutes of my life. Dad was very ill and really I was thinking it would just be days - and it was. I wonder how I ever got through it. Some time after my Dad died, I thought if given the option to be hypnotized and erase from my memory those painful days - I wouldn't do it. I think those experiences can shape you. Recently a friend of mine died at 37 and he was under hospice care. I reached out to his mother and felt an instant connection...as someone who had been there - I knew some of what she was feeling and maybe I said or expressed myself to her differently than I would have had I not gone through the same thing.
  3. Hello everyone, Has anyone attended any remembrance services in your community? The cemetary where my Dad is buried had a service Saturday night. They had luminaries all up and down their driveway - and then you could place a luminary on your person's marker. We put one on Dad's and my grandparents who are buried right next to him. That was all very pretty. It was a nice service about 20 minutes - someone sang and then someone spoke a few encouraging words. That cemetary had not done this for years and I am glad that someone brought it back. My mother attended another one at the funeral home chapel - it was for any family the funeral home had served this year. Caring thoughts to all of you this season!
  4. Dad was a prankster with the grandsons (my two boys and my sisters two boys). He had about 3 Halloween masks. He would put one on, go out the back door and then come around and ring the doorbell. The boys would answer and run screaming. Or - he would go out the back door and ring a little bell he had that sounded like the ice cream truck. All the kids would go bounding out the door looking for the ice cream man that came around every day. I wonder if any of the neighbors thought he was nuts when they saw him walking around the house with a Halloween mask or ringing a bell!
  5. We knew from previous tests that Dad had a spot on one rib and a rather large tumor on his liver. The liver had been biopsied - and then he developed blood clots in his lungs. So - he was in the hospital for the clots when we received the diagnosis/biopsy results. It was a Sunday night. The most compassionate doctor (not the oncologist) gave us the news. He assured us that when Dad got discharged - we would not be left wondering what to do next, but there would be a team of people working for Dad. My sister (who is a nurse) and I had decided that worst case scenario would have been primary liver cancer and that otherwise - it would likely be a cancer that spread from elsewhere so we were not in total shock. Nevertheless - "a type of lung cancer" was hard news to hear. Not 5 minutes after the doctor spoke with us and we were trying to digest everything -as if on que, a ton of visitors/family poured into the hospital room and the phone was ringing off the hook from the rest of the family. My poor Mom seemed sick to her stomach. I guess sometimes God just sends distractions to get you through the moment.
  6. If we could all have the mindset of kids - sometimes I think we'd all be better off!
  7. I am sorry for your loss. Someone at my work told me not to "jump back in the fast lane too quick". That was good advice. It's one day at a time - but sometimes it's one hour at a time. I will pray for strength for you and your son.
  8. atlanta1

    Did he smoke?

    Thanks for posting that article. It hits the nail on the head for alot of us who have heard that question over and over. I am sorry for your loss - having recently lost my Dad I'm sure we are going through some of the same emotions.
  9. atlanta1

    missing Dad

    Hello everybody. My husband, kids and I just got back from a week at the beach. This time last year (I guess I'll be saying that alot going forward), my parents and my sister and her family were all at the beach with us for vacation. That was life before Dad got sick. Anyhow, last week my 8 year old son found an almost perfect good sized seashell - the kind that curls in - a few inches long. I asked what he was going to do with it and he wanted to take it to the cemetary and leave it with Papa. I had been telling the boys about trips when I was young and how Papa loved the beach and so on. I missed Dad so much on this trip - I pictured him alongside the kids fishing on the pier and doling out "one more dollar" at the arcade. I pray that I can keep driving home to the boys what they meant to him. My emotions have been in high gear this week. I think it is because it's getting close to "this time last year" when Dad's back started to hurt. It was the beginning of a new and unfamiliar path, and we didn't have a clue what we were in for.
  10. This is the first Father's Day without my Dad. We went to the cemetary and released balloons - my sons (11 and had attached a note to theirs and my mother and I wrote a note on ours. My 8 year old had this idea that we could send "Papa" a note to heaven. If only we could all see life through the eyes of an 8 year old. So we watched the balloons until we couldn't see them anymore. Then we went out to eat and told some good stories about when Dad used to help babysit the boys. I actually had a harder time yesterday as I attended a 90th birthday party for a friend of the family. While I am so happy for her and that she is in good health and still drives!, I couldn't help but ask "why" - why couldn't it be my Dad that lived to be 90. After that party yesterday - the pain was as fresh as the moment he slipped away.
  11. I like the egg and trees idea - maybe I'll go get a few dozen while I can still afford them. Today I seem to be going backwards. Having a pretty good week until my office phone rang and it was my parents' number on the caller ID. For some reason I got the same "pit in the stomach" feeling that I would get when they would call in the last few weeks of Dad's life with a not so good update about one thing or another. Boy that was a sick feeling I had just now at first I thought "Oh God now what please no more bad news" - and then thought - oh - well that's over why am I anxious all of a sudden?
  12. Hello everybody - we have a DVD of pictures of Dad - from his childhood, my childhood, vacations, the grandkids with him, etc. This was running at the funeral home during visitation. I have just today been able to sit and watch the whole thing through...but I can't stand to have the music turned on with it I have to mute it. Just can't believe this time last year - he was playing pitch with my 8 year old baseball player son, and giving $1 to my other son each time he scored a soccer goal. Even last July we all went to Daytona Beach, FL - his favorite place in the world. And here we are now - we just had his funeral last Saturday. I feel like I've been on a different planet for the past several months and now that there's no Dr. visits to accompany, no daily call to see how he's doing or going out to eat just because he felt good that day - I just feel kinda lost and am really not interested in work, the news, or anything else except checking in on Mom and caring for my own family. Is there a "disgusted" stage of grief? That's pretty much how I feel - disgusted at the disease itself, disgusted that at times I feel Dad never had a chance as he was dealing with first one thing then another, disgusted that millions are spent on figuring out how monkeys communicate, but very little on lung cancer research, disgusted that people struggle to pay for gas to get to the doctor's office. Maybe I need to go throw something but I just had to vent this morning.
  13. I have just gotten home from being at the funeral home for Dad's visitation. We had visitors all day from about 11am this morning until 9pm. We are pooped - but at least the time kept moving. I am very much dreading the funeral tomorrow. If my mom gets a minute of quiet - she just looks so incredibly sad. My family and I stayed with her last night and tonight my sister and her family (husband and 2 boys) are with her. A couple of the nurses from the oncologist office stopped by - I thought that was nice and we asked them if we could donate the unused lovenox (blood thinner shots) to them as well as the unopened stuff that we used to flush Dad's picc line. I am desparate to find a way to pay it forward on a personal level for someone. One thing I thought about is to buy a handful of small denomination gift cards and perhaps patients that come in for chemo- maybe their caregiver could bring lunch from a nearby restaurant or even use it for gas. Something - anything to make the journey easier.
  14. Mr. Kenneth L. Thacker, age 66, of Canton, passed away on Thursday, May 8, 2008 at his residence. Funeral services are scheduled for 3:00 p.m. Saturday, May 10, 2008 from the Sosebee Memorial Chapel with Rev. Gerral Richards officiating. Interment will follow in Cherokee Memorial Park. The family will receive friends anytime after 11:00 a.m. Friday at the funeral home. Mr. Thacker was a retired soil testing engineer with the Georgia Department of Transportation. He was Baptist. Survivors include his wife, Effie Thacker; daughters and sons-in-law, Amy (Sean) Dillon of Holly Springs and Allison (Charles) Burgess of Waleska; four grandsons, Chandler and Hayden Dillon, Seth and Evan Burgess; brothers and sisters-in-law, Hugh (Marlene) Thacker of Canton and Charles (Margie) Thacker of Maysville; several aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins also survive. Sosebee Funeral Home, Canton, Ga. is in charge of arrangements. www.sosebeefuneralhome.com
  15. We lost my Dad about an hour ago. It was the most peaceful precious moment of my life. Hospice is here now and our family is here also. Please keep us in your thoughts and prayers in the days to come. Thanks.
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