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Monday, August 21, 2017

Joy Will Come Some Morning

Missing you, Babe!
I took a piece of mail to the church and as I walked through the auditorium, the thought of you never preaching behind that pulpit again started the tears.  I walked out of the auditorium and opened the door of your closed office and sat down in your chair and wept as I looked around the room at you.....your books, your fossils, your barometers, your family photos, your empty plant shelves, your certificates of accomplishment, your weather station, your label maker, your framed art.....then I opened your desk drawers and wept for the order that is you.....a place for everything and everything in it's place.....except you.  You have a new place now, an eternal place.  I'm thankful for the healing you have received in that new Place!  Joy will come to me some glad morning.  But for now, I weep.

".....weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning."  Psalm 30:5

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Just Like Papaw

Dearest Tim,
Jessica told me that Chance is taking a harmonica to school for show and tell because "my papaw liked to play harmonica and I like it and want to be just like him!"  What a wonderful compliment!  What an influence you made in everyone's life.

My Lord's day was no comparison to yours, I'm sure!  Being face to face with our Savior is hard to beat and something I can hardly wait for!  But, I had a good day!

Ilene and I joined Calvin, Sharon, Bobby and Joy for lunch at Vinnie's after church this morning.  What great fellowship!

We sang your favorite song today, "Living by Faith."  You lived your faith well!

I got a wonderful note from Doug Stewart letting me know he was praying for the family during our grieving time and told me he believed your life touched many other lives, especially in the way you handled your illness!  What a testimony of trusting God you lived!  Thank you for loving me!

I will always love you!
The Little Woman

Tim used to refer to me as "the little woman" sometimes.  What a special memory!

Today I sent some more thank you cards out, did some checkbook work, other computer work and after church tonight I changed the church sign saying and began packing the boxes I got from Food Lion last night with my books.  WHEW!  I have packed up 6 1/2 boxes and I'm still not done!

I'm going to need a TON more boxes!  I am going to need the Lord to help me weed out A LOT of stuff!

Jesus, Savior, pilot me
Over life’s tempestuous sea;
Unknown waves before me roll,
Hiding rock and treach’rous shoal;
Chart and compass come from Thee;
  Jesus, Savior, pilot me.

As a mother stills her child,
Thou canst hush the ocean wild;
Boist’rous waves obey Thy will
When Thou say’st to them, “Be still.”
Wondrous Sov’reign of the sea,
  Jesus, Savior, pilot me.

Though death’s valley I may pass,
Still Thy grace will fear surpass;
In Thy presence I will rest,
And, while leaning on Thy breast,
I will hear Thee say to me,
  “Fear not, I will pilot thee.”

Saturday, August 19, 2017

The Sweetness of Friendship

My sweet Tim,
Today I am thanking God for the gift of friendship. It has been a balm for my loneliness. Oh, what blessings I have received today!
First, Juanita called to invite me to meet her for lunch. We talked and shared many things for close to 2 hours. It was such a delightful time which I needed so desperately and one we both declared we needed to repeat sooner than later!

After returning home I worked on the bulletin and printed it out. At 4:30 I took the folded bulletins to the church just as Sharon and Calvin were pulling in to take me to Ruby Tuesday to eat with them. More delightful conversation around a good meal. Thank You, Lord!

As they dropped me off Ilene called to see how I was doing. She was having a rough day, so I packed my suitcase and came to her aid. I'm spending the night and we eased one another's loneliness. God has been near and dear to me all day. He is a good and gracious God!

"He fills my life with good things, so that I stay young and strong like an eagle." Psalm 103:5

Thank You, Lord, for every good and perfect gift from above!

Friday, August 18, 2017

An Empty Chair

My Dearest Tim,
Today you have been gone 10 days, 1 hour, 12 minutes and 45 seconds.  It still seems so unreal.  I keep expecting to hear your voice, to see your smile.  Today I got your death certificate and the copies of your obituary, but it still doesn't seem real.

I filled the bird feeders and sat down to enjoy them.  No birds came.  It's just as well because your seat was empty.  I cried.  I needed to talk to someone, so I called Lori.  She diverted my thoughts.  It was a temporary fix.

Now it is time for bed, but you are not here.  The bed we shared for 41+ years is missing  So, I will take two tylenol pm's and an anxiety pill and I will hopefully sleep through the night and through the sorrow of missing you.

I love and miss you, Babe!

The gray clouds are a reflection of the gray I felt in my heart this evening.

An empty chair.

No birds came.

Even though I was extremely sad tonight, there is hope in the Lord!  "For I know the plans I have for you," declares the Lord, "Plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future."  Jeremiah 29:11

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Remembering Tim

Tim has been in heaven a week already, as of 9:48 EST this evening!

I Can Only Imagine what he is seeing and experiencing!  Click on the link to listen to Amy Grant and be prepared for chills and tears!

Heaven will be worth it all!

Heaven Will Surely Be Worth It All
Lyrics: W. Oliver Cooper
Music: Minzo C. Jones

Often I'm hindered on my way,
Burdened so heavy I almost fall;
Then I hear Jesus sweetly say;
"Heaven will surely be worth it all."

Many the trials, toils and tears,
Many a heartache may here appall;
But the dear Lord so truly says:
"Heaven will surely be worth it all."

Toiling and pain I will endure,
Till I shall hear the death angel call;
Jesus has promised and I'm sure
Heaven will surely be worth it all.

Heaven will surely be worth it all.
Worth all the sorrows that here befall;
After this life with all its strife,
Heaven will surely be worth it all.

The pastor who conducted Tim's funeral is a good friend of Tim's.  He wrote this poem for Tim:

Timothy Day, 1954 – 2017
A quiet man of kindness known,
By words confirmed in actions shown.
A man respected, without deception
Above reproach with no exception.

A scholar’s mind, a servant’s heart.
A student’s friend, the seeker’s art.
In language skilled, in words well-said.
Ever learning, in books well read.

Friend, father, faithful man
Of God, always trusting Heaven’s plan.
A life too short but yet well-spent
A soul not here, but just absent.

Loved more than our words can say,
By those who mourn with us today.
Loved even more by his Savior
Who received him into Heaven’s favor

Safe in the arms of Jesus!  I miss and love you, Babe!

Saturday, August 5, 2017

Update on Tim

Tim's decline in health has been very evident over the last couple of weeks. But this week it took a nose dive.  Friday, there were several times I checked on him in the spare bedroom to find him flat on his back with a comatose stare at the ceiling. When I asked him if he was ok, he could barely answer. He also had been feeling the need to urinate without being able to.  So I sent a note to his 3 main doctors: the oncologist, the radiation oncologist, and the neurologist. I basically begged them to consider admitted Tim to the hospital because of his weakening condition. The neurologist (neurosurgeon) answered that he was concerned about Tim's overall condition deteriorating. He said, "After reviewing his most recent brain imaging, I recommend no neurosurgical intervention. However, he needs a medical evaluation. I recommend that you bring him to the ED here for an evaluation and possible admission to the hematology/oncology or medicine service."  Knowing how Tim HATES waiting in the ER, especially when you don't feel well to begin with, I asked him if he wanted to go. He said yes, so we went.

While we were waiting to be seen, the oncologist called me to see what was going on. I told him he was even worse than he was 2 days ago when he had the brain MRI. He told me someone explained to him that the cancer has spread to the lining of the brain. He said once the cancer has done that chemo usually doesn't have much effect. He said he would work on getting Tim admitted with the idea of transitioning to hospice care at home.

In a few minutes time, the doctor's nurse called me and said they were waiting on a bed. Within an hour one of the ER nurses was taking us to his room. Thank You, Lord!

The nursing staff set about to make him comfortable. They first did an ultrasound on his abdomen to see how much fluid was in his bladder. They found it to be holding about a liter, so they inserted a Foley catheter. First problem solved.

Next, fluids were administered after his portacath was accessed. And then they began to work on his constipation by giving him a laxative.

The plan for getting him to sleep for the night was Xanax and Ambien. I asked him if he was ok with me going home to get some sleep and print out the bulletin. He said yes. I stayed until I knew he was asleep.

On the way home, I realized that I needed a hug. So I called Sharon and asked her if she was busy and told her I needed a hug. She said to come! Thank you, Sharon and Calvin for the hugs, the food and the encouragement and love.

After I got home, I started calling Tim's family to let them know about his condition. I sent texts to others and an email to a pastor friend and his wife. I printed out the bulletin and did a little bit of laundry.  I was in bed around 12:15 and didn't wake up until 5:50! I haven't slept that well in a month of Sundays! Thank You Lord!

Took my shower, packed my bedding and clothes in the suitcase, washed our sheets for the girls and threw them in the dryer, fixed up my purse and a tote with my meds, camera, books, etc., took the bulletins to the church and our tithe. Loaded up the car and headed back to the hospital.

Nothing has relieved Tim's constipation. Not the laxative or the suppository or the enema.  Not sure what they will do about that. He has been throwing up bile today.

Well, here's to another night of rest (hopefully, if Tim ever settles down and quits fidgeting). Of course, when Tim finally settled down, the nurse needed vitals! GRRR!

Thursday, August 3, 2017


I had to call 911 around 3:30 a.m.  I was helping Tim move from the recliner to the bed in the guest room.  He tried to get there too quickly and his legs buckled under him and he went down while I was holding him.  We worked for 15 minutes trying to get him up, but without strength, he could not help me and I just could not lift him.

911 dispatch transferred my call to the EMTs.  I put a pillow behind Tim's head, threw a blanket over him and he went to sleep while waiting on them to arrive.  It took longer for the paperwork than for them to get him up.  Fortunately it didn't cost anything since we didn't need ambulance transport to the hospital.  Thank You, LORD!

He slept pretty well until 1:00.  After that it was a game of transfers.....from the bed to the recliner to the bed and back again.  And add to that the many times he had to pee.  BUT, I'm glad he is drinking more!  Thank You, LORD!

He said several times today that he wished he could go to the ER and that they would do something to make him feel better.  Breaks my heart!  Liz is going to come tomorrow and bring me some milk and give me her opinion on her dad's condition.  He is definitely worse, but I don't know how much more to endure before I insist he be admitted to the hospital for some help.

I'm tired, so I am just going to close so I can get some sleep while he is sleeping.  Thank you all for your prayers!

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

Update on Tim

Today’s doctor and MRI visits:

We left the house around 9:40 and finally got back home around 5:30.
The first item on the agenda was porta cath care and blood work at 10:30.
Then the follow up with the oncologist at 11:30 so he could talk about the results of the blood work and examine Tim.  However, today he did not examine Tim since Tim was in the wheelchair and kind of out of it since he did not get much, if any, sleep last night.  He fretted all night about the MRI. 

He is becoming more and more anxious.  He was getting his feet tangled in the covers the other night, so last night he decided he needed to sleep on top of the covers.  So, I put a sweatshirt on him for the replacement of a blanket.  Before I could get it over his head, he was panicking.  The bathroom light across from the bedroom has to be left on at night and our bedroom door remains open.

Anyway, the oncologist said that this should be the low point of the chemo treatment and he should start to rebound now…….just in time to begin the process all over again.  The good news is that we have been able to tell that a few of the melanoma tumors have shrunk.  Let’s just pray the ones in the brain do, too!  I asked the doctor if there was a limit to the number of treatments Tim would be taking.  He said it all depended on the white blood cell count.  So blood work will be done at least once a month before he determines whether Tim is good to go for another 28 day cycle of 5 days taking the chemo pill followed by 23 days off.

The doctor wanted us to come back to see him after the MRI was done.

We had about an hour and a half to kill before the MRI, so I grabbed a chicken sandwich from Hardees, took it to the MRI Center and ate it in the parking lot while Tim took a nap.  He had to be at his appointment at 1:30 check-in time and 2:00 for the MRI.  We went in at 1:00, hoping to be slipped in early.  Not so much.  They were running behind and it was 2:45 before he even went back and by the time they gave him the sedative it was later than that when the MRI started.

The nurse said the sedative was a fail, but they were able to complete the study.  Tim was just really fidgety even with the sedative.  He remembers them telling him to be a good boy and hold his head still (this after she told me he wouldn’t remember anything about it!)  HA!

We got back over to the main campus of the hospital around 4:00.  The nurses de-accessed his port and we waited for the doctor to come see us about the MRI results.  When he got there around 4:45, he had to admit he didn’t really know what he was looking at.  He is not the brain MRI specialists.  He said he saw the melanoma, but he doesn’t know what the other doctor has in mind for any further radiation treatment, if any.  So, he said he would have to wait and talk with him.

In the meantime, the doctor is very concerned about Tim’s weakness and trying to walk around the house up and down the steps between the “man cave” and the kitchen.  I told him we could take care of that since there is a bathroom and a bedroom in that end of the house and there is really no need for him to go up and down the stairs.

On the 11th we meet with the eye doctor about the double vision returning.  Tim is really suffering with motion sickness, I think, due to the double vision!  I think that is why he keeps getting nauseous while we are out, especially!

All it took was for me to wheel him into the MRI center for him to become nauseous.  He saw the trash can and said, "Stay close to that trash can."  So, I asked the check-in desk if he could use it to throw up in.  Fortunately, he sat still long enough that he never did throw up.  I hate it for him, though.  Hopefully the eye doctor will be able to do something to help him.

I’m discouraged because Tim was doing so well before he started this chemo treatment.  He was getting back into preaching again and feeling pretty good!  Now, it is as though all of the progress has been ripped away from him again!  I think he is doing worse now than when he had the brain surgery!  I think I need an attitude adjustment!  Thy will be done, LORD!  Thank You for the good years Tim has had during the treatment of the metastatic melanoma!

I did learn today that probably giving him one of the doses of the steroid with his night time meds is contributing to him not being able to sleep at night.  The doctor said that 5:00 should probably be the latest he takes the last dose.  Well, by the time we got home tonight, we were already past that time, so I decided not to give him the dose at all tonight.  I started the Xanax tonight.  Pray that he sleeps through the night!  Pour guy needs it after the night he had last night!

Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Urgent Care Visit

Well, it's been another one of those days!  Tim had the dry heaves this morning and had a slight headache.  I sent a note to his oncologist about the fall yesterday, the throwing up in Walmart, the throwing up today and the headache and asked his opinion.  I got a note back from a triage nurse that said, due to the symptoms we should go to the ER or urgent care so trauma could be ruled out.  Tim did NOT want to sit in the ER all day, so we found the nearest Wake Forest Urgent Care facility in Clemmons (about 15 minutes away) and went there.

YUP!  There will be no more ER visits unless it is by ambulance!  We were in a room within 15 minutes!  The doctor gave Tim a good examination.  He ruled out a spinal bleed (I think) and determined that there was no trauma from the fall.  When he listened to Tim's abdomen, he said Tim had lots of acid.  He prescribed a stronger antacid medicine than what he is currently taking.  I told him Tim was not sleeping very well.  He said it is normal with the obvious stress his body is under from the cancer.  He also prescribed Xanax for him to take at night to help sleep.  But he also said Tim needs to refrain from all the napping during the day!  That will be a tough one, considering how weak Tim is!

Since Tim will be getting sedation tomorrow for the MRI, we opted not to give him the Xanax tonight because Xanax and Versed react to one another in a bad way, causing terrible side effects!

I don't know how the subject came about, but the doctor also wanted Tim to start eating chicken noodle soup 4 times a day.  I think for strength and fluids, maybe!  I'm not sure where that all fits in to our visit today!  I would love it if Tim ate half that much!  Today, he didn't eat breakfast due to the nausea.  After we got back home, he did eat 1 small ladle of chicken noodle soup.  And, he was not about to eat that for supper, too!  He had about half an ear of corn.  He's just about as weak now as he was when I had to take him for fluids last Friday.  I'm at my wits end of knowing what to do to make him drink and eat!

Since we were at the urgent care for awhile and then went to the store to fill the new prescriptions afterwards, he still took a nap after he ate the soup.  He did snooze a little bit throughout the afternoon, but not as much as usual, I don't think.  Pray he sleeps well tonight!

We also went outside for a bit tonight.  Here's a few pictures and some movies of the birds.

Please pray for Tim.  He is so anxious about tomorrow's MRI that he cannot sleep tonight.  I can't give him the Xanax because it interacts in a harmful way with the Versed he will receive tomorrow for the MRI.

It turned cloudy late this afternoon.  Made the temp comfortable for sitting outside.

The flowers got chopped off the tobacco today.