Hello all

I haven't been on in ages, for a few reasons. Firstly my lovely wee Daddy of 92 died on Nov 22nd. He was was of an advanced age but was still driving and out everyday buying in what was needed for the house, very active and his mind was as sharp if not sharper than my own. I'm an only girl so I was a 'Daddy's girl' and very close to him and I had my arm around his head when he died.

I wish I could say he died with peace and dignity but I'm sorry to say that wasn't the case. I won't go into the details but it was not a site I ever wish to see ever again. While I couldn't fault the medical staff (nurses and young doctors) that remained at his side (some who stayed well past their home time to continue to nurse him to the end) from 4 in the morning until his death at half past five in the evening, it seems to me that some of the consultants are more interested in keeping a body living than in how a man of 92 should end his days. In the end I lost the head and told them to leave my daddy alone and just let him die with dignity, which he did with his loving family around him. I have four brothers in America but only two were able to get home for the wake and funeral. His three great-children took part in his Requim and his son, who is a priest, officiated. Even though I'm an atheist this 30 odd years it was moving, lighthearted and memorable. As wakes go he had a good one, lots of visitors telling yarns about him, memories cherished and shared and amazement at how 'young' he was for a man of his age. Many described him as a wee gentleman......I had to laugh when I thought how he would giggle at being referred to as a wee gentlemen.......believe me he would have giggled!

As for myself I'm just not well and haven't been since September. I have on going non symptomatic UTI that no amount of antibiotics are shifting. The result is that I'm suffering chronic fatigue, nausea and the strangest thing has happened too, I've gone off things that I normally would love......wine, coffee, chocolate, in fact I've sort of stopped eating. I have gone down at least one size, that's how I measure weight loss or gain as I won't have scales about the house. I eat enough to keep me alive but I'm never hungry nor do I ever 'fancy something', know that I mean? I eat one meal a day and try to make it as healthy as possible. I sort of live on soup and salad these days.

I'm sure this is because of the on going infection and once it is finally sorted I'll start eating again and I'll find that one size I lost and put it back on again!

Of course all this infection is stopping me from getting my gold injections that I have been waiting on since August. Right now I haven't the energy to get to worked up about it, I'm just drained these days. No Christmas this year for me either, a few things for the grandchildren and dinner on Christmas Day and St Stephens Day (Boxing Day). I was to get some decorating done in the bungalow in the New Year but have postponed it for a while, I'm just sooooo tired and couldn't bare the thought of all the disruption, maybe later on I need the year....we'll see.

Anyhow, my friends, I just wanted to let you know that I'm alive and kicking, if only just. I wish you all a lovely and healthy Christmas and New Year. I'll be glad to see the end of 2016. XX

35 Replies

  • Sorry for your loss.

  • Thanks Mhairi.

  • I too wil be glad to see the back of this year as well. I am sorry on the loss of your dad and as you said he was a great age. I hope 2017 will be brighter for you darling.xcxxxxx

  • Thanks so much Sylvi, it has been a rough year for many reasons. I hear so many people saying that about 2016, mostly for political reasons but this year has seen away a lot of much loved famous people too so my wee Daddy was in good company there. When I would go down to his house, almost every day, I'd open the front door and shout in "it's only me"and he would call back "it's only you",then we would both laugh......I still want to do it every time I go in the door but he isn't there to call back to me. Daddy's and their daughters......

  • Very sorry for your loss, hopefully after the year you can get back on track with your meds after your infection and you will always have cherished memories off your Dad who brought you up to be who you are today xxx

  • That is such a lovely thing to say, thank you very much. X

  • I was only thinking of you last night Jean my love & had I not fallen asleep in the chair would have pm'd you. I'm so very sorry to hear your darling daddy has passed. I do so think it's difficult if someone so close passes so near to the Christmas period, in fact we were just talking to a friend in the Surgery the other day who lost his dad last Christmas Day & his brother on New Years Eve (though his brother was seriously mentally disabled it was still a shock). We talked about DNR to my f-i-l who had been in & out of hospital lately & he agreed so when it came to near the time he hadn't all the messing around your daddy did. I'm sorry you'd to experience that, though it's what they do you shouldn't have had to be faced with taking authority, they should have picked up on your concerns & broached the subject with you. Sounds as though he was well remembered though!

    I'm not surprised you're not well, not having had any meds of any form for so long will have caused havoc, your daddy's passing & then this blinkin UTI preventing your gold injections, well how much can a body take? Hopefully the antibiotics will eventually get a hold of it & you'll start feeling like eating. Whilst losing weight is a bonus it's not really the way you want to lose it is it?

    I hope you can enjoy Christmas, one less at the table is always difficult the first year & more so so soon after a loss so I hope you can may the best of a bad job & raise a glass.

    I hope Barney & Kells are looking after you. Give them a love from me. x

  • Heels, I love hearing from you, I've missed you. It has been an awful year, except for m cruise, I'll not be sorry to see the back of it. I'm usually grand until I talk about him and then the tears flow. He was a big part of my life and he has left a void that will never be filled as you only have one wee Daddy, don't you?

    Bronagh, my Rheumy nurse, has sent me word that she will be in contact with me this week to see what's going on with this retched UTI, nothing will be happening until it goes and there isn't much sign of that yet but if there is something she can do for me she'll do it.

    I'm so tired too and that really doesn't help but an hour ago I got a fone call from my brother, who was trying his best not to sound too panicky as he couldn't get a taxi to get him to the bus in time to get his flight back to the US. I hadn't time to think about pain. I found myself at his door, no knickers or bra on and my pull on trousers were on back to front! I'm only starting to feel the pain now.......thanks for getting in touch and for just simply thinking of me, your are a darlin do you know that? XXX

  • What a picture you paint, no knicks, bra & your pants on back to front!! I hope by now he's at the airport at least.

    I'm sure Bronagh will do all she's able to help you. She's a good un isn't she. Steroid injection or tablets perhaps or is that not a good idea until your UTI is cleared up?

    I so understand the way you are at the mo, I was just the same though it was some while ago, 1993, I was just turned 33 & he was 73. I still miss him & you're quite right nobody ever replaces your daddy, I was a daddy's girl too. My h held him in high regard & still lives by a lot of what he told him, if he does something out of the ordinary I'll ask where did that come from & invariably he'll say it was something my dad said. Some will say this is silly but we sense him round us now from time to time. He smoked a pipe in later years & mixed his own tobacco so it was a specific smell unlike any other. Randomly we'll get whiff of the scent as if he's just walked past, a lovely chocolatey smell & it can be anywhere, most odd but comforting.

    I'll be in touch before Christmas Jean, we'll have a good auld blether. Love P xxx

  • Sorry to hear about your loss. Doesn't matter how old or independent with your own life you are, there is still that awful feeling of 'being alone'. Does that make sense? Like being a kid again and yer Dad has gone out of sight, and there's that feeling of panic until he reappears and takes your hand. So hugs from me.

  • Thanks luv. I was telling people at the wake that my earliest memory of my Father is him sitting at my bedside before he went to bed and asking me "who's girl are ya", and me answering "yours Daddy" and then he'd hug me.......I was very young maybe 4 or 5. The tears are blinding me......have to go. XXXX

  • Sorry for your loss.


  • Thanks so much Jacqui. So many kind words from so many lovely people, it really does help. XX

  • Good to hear that you are alive and kicking despite your huge loss and unwellness... me thinks a good dose of hibernating with relaxing music and a thrilling book might be the order of the day/month. If you can throw a log fire in with it then do so!!!!

    Take care and keep warm

    All the best


  • Thanks Ali. I listen to Classic FM all the time and find it soothing. Even though they are playing C'mas music a lot this year it is really lovely, lovely music and I find it very soothing. It's about as C'mas as I'm going to get this year. Thanks for taking the time to reply, it is much appreciated. All the best, Jean. XX

  • Jeanabelle, I'm so sorry about your daddy, I really feel for you. I'm sure your daddy died feeling the love from his family around him and to be so independent at that age was wonderful. His wake and funeral sound amazing and I'm sure he would have been so proud to think his son officiated at his funeral and his great grandchildren took part.

    My mother died at 87 and was well looked after in hospital and her nurses were kind too but the end wasn't at all nice and for a long time all I could think of and see in my mind was her in the bed at the end of her life, it was horrible as you are finding out.

    Eventually though I found I could think of her as the person she was and laugh at the funny and often diabolical things that she used to do. So I really hope that happens for you too, it might take a while but one day you will realise it has happened.

    For a long time I used to take something of hers with me when I went out, especially places I knew she would love, it was kind of like taking her too - she always wanted black woolly gloves for Christmas so I worked my way through all of her pairs of gloves and I took her tea towels with us when we went camping because she used to love giong camping. There was something nice about dong that and it wasn't morbid either. So you could keep something that reminds you of your daddy in your pocket or bag.

    Don't worry about Christmas, just do your best and do as much or as little as you want to. The sky won't fall in if you give it a miss this year. Look after yourself and especially be kind to yourself and hopefully 2017 will bring you good things and better health.

  • Everything I hear about elderly people dying in hospital makes me realise that this is not really the right place for them at the end. My parents both died in nursing/ care homes, the family had signed a DNR making it clear that they were to be given pain relief (as much as necessary ) only. I really cannot fault the treatment they and our family received in both care homes such that they had a peaceful death and a very sad situation was made more bearable for those left behind. Don't start me on a certain Gp practice though........

  • I know what you mean. My son and I were sitting outside my Fathers room while the staff were working with him and I could hear him calling my name, I'll never forget it till the day I die. He then started to call my son's name. He just wanted it to stop and we were, until then, helpless.

    Afterwards I told my son that I wanted a DNR when my time comes, I wouldn't want to put him through that a second time, it was nothing short of cruel. As I said though it was the surgeons that appear for a minute or so and then disappear to leave the staff and trainees to deal with the aftermath. I wonder if they have left instructions for a DNR order for when they are on their deathbeds?

  • That is a really nice thing to carry something of his with me.....I'm going to do that today, thanks for you very kind and thoughtful words. Xx

  • So sorry to hear about your father, Jeanabelle. I hope the lighter emotions of the wake help to balance the memories of his passing. It's hard, I know, as I spent four days at my father's bedside last year before he passed away. But his funeral service and wake were quite healing in a way, and it cheered me to think of him reunited with all his drinking, dancing Irish ancestors.

    Hope you soon feel better.

  • That is so true Em. My Fathers brought out my hundreds of cousins as he was the last of all his siblings. The craic was great at times, many hearty laughs among the many tears. My Father was a bit of a singer and was in an 'old school' choir. At the cemetery just as we were about to leave the choir stood on some raised ground beside the grave and started to sing the second verse of Danny Boy....."and when I'm dead and laying in my grave".......it was so lovely and that particular song was one of his favourites.

    The day was very cold, sunny and sharp with frost glistening on every leaf so it was then all hands to a local for a good hearty dinner and a few much needed drinks. My Father never drank in his life but he would have had a great time no matter and he left a few pounds behind the bar to raise their glass to him. All in all it was just as he would have liked it.

    Thanks for your memories. XX

  • Thank you, Jeanabelle. It sounds a very special day and a very positive affirmation of your father's life, something you can look back on with both happiness and sadness.

    Your reply brought a tear to my eye! My father played the piano accordion, and we decided that for his funeral service we wanted to enter the chapel to "Danny Boy" played live on an accordion. So I rang a local man, and he came along with a friend (a lovely Irish man called Tom) and together they played us in, which was extremely moving. Later they played at the wake, which lightened the mood considerably. The nicest thing for me was that the accordionist (himself 89) revealed at the wake that he had been a friend and colleague of my grandfather's, and sometimes instead of working, he'd play while my grandfather danced the jig. Dad wasn't a drinker or a dancer, but would have appreciated his musical send-off.

  • The things that out learn at wakes! My own father had promised us all that he would give up driving when his license expired in Fed '17. At the wake I was talking to my cousin who deals with all things to do with driving, he is a driving instructor. Anyhow, he was saying about the last time he was talking to my father was just the week before he died and Daddy was asking him how he would go about renewing his licence after it expired! He got us all off his back about driving and he was was then setting it up again behind our backs!!!!! Crafty wee man, we were all in a bit of a shock but could do nothing but laugh at the thought of it. He is missed so much.

  • So sorry....I lost my husband this year, and know what a hole it leaves. I too am struggling with infection, have had a wound infection for 5 months, and know how draining it is. It's so difficult to eat when you have no appetite, but of course you need a healthy diet to get rid of the infection. Try to supplement your food intake, add cream to puds, have plenty of milk, cup a soups are quick and easy, and protein is essential to the healing process. I know the theory, but also find it difficult to do it! I do hope you enjoy the festive season as much as you can. Most importantly, be kind to yourself. M xx

  • Thanks M, I know exactly what your saying. I feel like I'm force feeding myself and then I feel nauseous after I do eat......can't win can we?

    You must be really feeling the loss of your hubby at this time of year. They say it eases with time and I'm sure the actual pain subsides but the 'vacant spot' I think will be there for the rest of your days. Thinking of you......XX

  • Hi Jean, I am very sorry to read about the loss of your dad, I'm sure it would have been a great comfort to him knowing that you were there holding him when he passed...I hope you feel brighter in time.

    I like you have had a UTI on and off since my Rituximab infusion in April and now on my umpteenth lot of antibiotics which make me feel queasy, it did go for a bit but came back after my holiday in September and has not gone...put me off going on a cruise again!! My last lot were slow release antibiotics which helped but did not properly clear it..so I can understand how you're feeling. I think I may have to stay on these, I know of people who taken for 6 months but hopefully not us!!

    My warmest wishes to you and I hope you manage a peaceful and relaxing Christmas. X

  • Hello there. It's does help to know that I'm not on my own with regards to ongoing UTI. It might be more common that I thought. You know there have been times recently when I just want to lay down, go to sleep and for someone to wake me up when I'm fit to rejoin the rest of the world.

    I know it's just that so much has happened in the past weeks and it will get sorted out eventually but in the mean time I'm just heart sore, nauseous, pain everywhere.........listen to me, I would depress god. It will get better, just a bit more patience on my part I think. Thanks for your reply, it means a lot. X

  • Oh Jean, I'm so sorry for your loss. You've had a rough time lately and I'm sorry that the year has ended so badly for you. I hope you are comforted by your happy memories and that they bring you some joy through this difficult time. Thinking of you xx

  • Thanks Doll, you really are a doll. XXX

  • My sincere condolences to you on the loss of your dad. Tak care and get better soon. Thank you for sharing...sending you 🤗🤗🤗😚😚😚

  • People are so kind and thoughtful.....thanks so much. XX

  • Jean , wishing you well and condolences for your Dad, who you describe so sweetly. Please try to eat a bit more and like Ali said, take a pamper moment or two in the day to do things that you really enjoy. Your Dad would want you to heal and be well - so remember that and be kind to yourself! Seasons Blessings!

  • Thank you for your lovely words. I think my appetite is slowly improving. I do have an evening meal most days now but not much of anything else. I'm going to keep a low profile over Christmas and the New Year and hope things improve soon. I hope you have a lovely holiday yourself. Take care, Jean.

  • So sorry for the loss of your loving father.

  • Thank you Suzan.

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