Sunday, 2 August 2009

Times Three No. 5

I am beginning to believe in nothing. I know that if you pray hard enough you will never be answered. I know if you want something badly enough it will never happen. But I just can’t help it; I pray anyway.

After all; a sucker is born every day.

I may be wrong on the days of the week as time is just a jumble right now.


Mom is out of the hospital, she is feeling so much better and I am thankful.

Monday to Thursday

Mornings spent in the hospital with Sheldon. Nathan spends the afternoon and early evenings with him. Sheldon is super incredible; he is up walking and feeling good. He is hopeful that the worst is over and he will be on the road to recovery.

Sheldon makes me laugh everyday. The doctors love him, the nurses love him, our family loves him, I love him.

Hospitals are full of strange happenings.

I am waiting for an elevator on the 5th floor and a man in a hospital gown is walking up and down the hall with a cell phone in one hand, a catheter attached to his penis, and a pee bag in his other hand. He keeps swinging the phone hand and the pee bag hand which lifts up his gown and pulls on his catheter. All I can think is ‘give it up already.’

I wander from floor to floor in the hospital because I forget where I’m going half the time. Mom was on the 5th in three different rooms, Jacquie is on the 5th at a different hospital back in her original room with a pit stop in between. Sheldon was on the main, then the 4th and now the 7th where he has been in two different rooms.

There is an elderly woman at the end of the hall where she is walking every time I go. She has long grey hair and looks only a little older than me. I ask her if she remembers her room and she is not sure. I always get the nurse.

Monday to Thursday

Jacquie tells me the doctor came in and told her of the other biopsy. It is a Grade 4 tumor and it originated in the brain. It will not leave the brain. She will have radiation and chemotherapy by pill form and the tumor will grow again. It is located in the worst part of the brain where her movement is located. They do not feel that she will have her motor skills at all in the left side of her body.

Jacquie tells the doctor that she understands that this will be the end of her, but until it truly is the end she plans to live each day to the fullest until it is her last. ‘Now come in the picture I want to take a picture of you and I.’ He does and smiles for the camera.

Kayla comes to see her Grandma and sits with Jacquie; she too gets her picture taken with Jacquie and the doctor.

I am crying and Jacquie tells me over and over ‘Renee, it is fine. Seriously, it is what it is and I am fine with it.’ I tell her that she is fine with it, but I’m not.

Spend the evening with Jacquie. Angelique makes a Caesar salad that Jacquie wants and then Jacquie, Angelique, Nadalene, and Mickey and I have a little party.


It is pouring rain and Nathan and a friend pick up all of Sheldon’s furniture from his apartment as he will not be returning there after the hospital.


Go downstairs and almost have a shit-fit as I see furniture and stuff all over my main floor. Because Nathan couldn’t get into Jacquie’s he brought it home. It is now in my living room.

At 8 a.m. I yell down to Nathan ‘Why the fuck did you bring all of Sheldon’s shit here?’ He tells me he couldn’t get into Auntie Jacquie’s because the doors were locked.

Pete and Matt come and get the furniture in their trucks and take it to Jacquie’s.

Jacquie, Ben, Mickey and I have an appointment with Jacquie’s Radiation Oncologist at 1:30 at Cancer Care.

At 10 a.m. Ben phones and tells me he is rushing to St. Boniface to see Sheldon because of a phone call that Sheldon has an infection. He picks me up on his way.

The doctor tells us that Sheldon has an infection and will start antibiotics. His hemoglobin is down to 67 and he will need a transfusion.

I kiss Sheldon goodbye and we go to get Jacquie to take her to her appointment.

She is dressed and looks beautiful. She is ready for battle and knows what is ahead of her.

The Radiation Oncologist discusses her treatment. He says that Jacquie is young, bright, has a good memory and is very alert. He says that she may not get movement back in her left side. Jacquie says they don’t know who they are dealing with and she will get movement back, as a matter of fact she stood in physio five times the day before. (And will eventually show us all that she will stand again three more times when we take her back to her room. It is wonderful to see her standing upright again.) Also she has some movement in her left hand.

Jacquie will get fitted for a mask for radiation next week and will have 30 rounds of radiation. She will also start oral chemo and will be very tired. She wants to be drugged to the max as she is claustrophobic.

Jacquie is going to war and really doesn’t give a shit what they do to her, she is 100% focused on getting to Sheldon and helping him. That is Jacquie’s goal. I almost don’t give a shit either, I just want her to go and make Sheldon feel better.

To help Jacquie in her goal Ben and Joey are contacting people to get Jacquie transferred to St. Boniface. It works; she should be transferred early next week.

Jacquie is dressed up so instead of going back to her room we decide to go for lunch and we are all thinking comfort food.

Jacquie has a Sal’s nip and fries, Ben doesn’t eat, Mickey has fries and gravy and a piece of carrot cake and I have a salmon sandwich and crackers and humus. Ben is laughing that Auntie Mickey told the lady she didn’t want the piece she handed her, but a bigger piece with more icing. We all laugh at our eating habits and they say at least I am eating healthy; I have to come clean and pull out of both my left and right coat pockets two butter-tarts. We have an even better laugh.

Jacquie is back in her pajamas and in bed. Her favourite nurse has just helped her. His name is Carlo and he is a total doll. He told Jacquie that he admires her immensely and finds her strength incredible and that her attitude is amazing considering what is going on. He then asked if when she gets transferred if he would be able to come and visit her at St. Boniface. How incredibly nice some people are. Jacquie is the type of person who brings out the best in everyone.

Jacquie, Mickey and I are all talking. I am crying thinking of the whole fucked up day and Jacquie is rambling on about something. I don’t even know what Mickey is doing.

Then I hear Jacquie say ‘Yeah, I don’t even know what they are doing on Mars? How can they be on Mars for days when they can’t even get me across the city to St. Boniface? Who gives a shit if there is life on Mars?’

I awake from my stupor and say what are you talking about Mars for? As far as I am concerned the only thing I could give two shits for about Mars is if they can take you and me tomorrow and cut off our heads and stick them up our asses and feed them to Martians so that Sheldon could be cured. For some reason we all choke with laughter. See how tired we all are. Mickey and Jacquie are hysterical with laughter.

Driving home Mickey tells me how her and Gord saw at least a dozen sniffers on Main Street and how she wished the sniffers could die and we could live. I double that sentiment.

Nathan comes home from visiting Sheldon and says that he is getting more blood transfusions.

Nadalene goes to the hospital and stays with Sheldon till 1 a.m. Sheldon finally falls asleep.


I wake up almost every hour thinking and worrying about Sheldon. I am at the hospital at 7:30 a.m. Sheldon is cold and clammy. I keep getting him warm blankets. His tube in his throat keeps falling out. There are surgeons coming in and out all day. Sheldon is hurting and they need to increase the pain meds.

The hematologist comes in and says his blood is now at 77. They don’t know why it keeps going so low. They think it may be the infection. There are some bubbles in the tube, is it air or is it a leak?

Sheldon tells me about a letter his Mom wrote and read to him over the phone. It has made him happy. Jacquie tells me over the phone the letter she wrote to Sheldon and it makes her cry.

It is a hard day. A very hard day.

Angelique and Ben come, so I leave.

Not once, not even once have I ever asked ‘Why me?’ When people would ask me ‘Why you?’ I would say ‘Why not me?’

But this is too much.

Nadalene said that with A.J. and Sheldon being diagnosed with cancer within days of each other is like a person being struck by lightning.

There is no rhyme or reason there is only chaos. And chaos rules the day.


Lakeland Jo said...

it all sounds incredibly stressful. Just try to rest as best you can. At least you can still laugh along the way sometimes- so important. Thinking of you

PurestGreen said...

Every time I read these posts I am left at a loss for words. It's not fair. This is chaos. As always, I send my highest hopes and a big hug.

Silver said...

that's life in a nutshell for an ordinary day.. i know that one, friend.

also about the praying part. I think one has to come such a long way out .. and then it hits you on your head and you just get it.

Like.. hey, i think i've got this thing finally figured out, i told my son just the other day.

I am just NOT going to die. God never lets you have what you want most. Maybe i'll have to play a little reverse psychology with Him..

sending you a little love & hugs today..


Michelle said...

Oh shit Renee. It's just shit.

Love you


Mim said...

Renee - this is all so hard and still so unbelievable to me, I wish that there were magic healing words to send to you but no...there is just the support from your friends that can be given.
I too am praying for Sheldon and Jacqui - much love sent your way.

one little acorn said...

How much more to face Renee. At least getting Jacquie transferred to St. Boniface would ease some of the burden and I hope that also means Jacquie and Sheldon will be able to see each other. That would be a blessing. And easier for all of your family. When nothing is easy, it is something.
I continue to hold you in my thoughts and hope so much that things improve soon.
I love the new header pic too. Gorgeous. Sisters side by side and bound together. Lots of love to you and yours Renee. xx

Anonymous said...

I did not give up thinking on You all, Renee, please take care of You, with love, Kristina

soulbrush said...


soulbrush said...

'Stuck in a Moment'

Renee,I have dedicated this post to you:
and your family, with all our prayers in bloggyland.

Delwyn said...

I send you and your family my love

Silke said...

This IS too much! Yet you are all dealing with it with such grace...I am in awe. Feeling such sadness, yet such hope for you all! Sending all my love, Silke

Arija said...

Oh my dearest dear, what can I say but pray, pray, pray, I do.

LDWatkins said...

The hell you are going through is made so real to us through your blog, and it's good for you to be able to write about the pain. We can read you; we can cry for you; we can love all of you and pray for you; we can send warm hugs and hope you feel them. I wish we could do more. Love, Lynda

Tessa said...

Come here, Renee, come here and let me hug you and sit you on that nice comfy sofa and bring you a tray laid with pretty china and flowers in a small vase. There is soothing tea for you, and your favourite cake and those biscuits you like. We will talk about life, and about you, about the family you love so dearly and the torment which you are all suffering and I will try with everything in my power to make it better for a short moment in time.

If love be a healing aid, please take mine, Renee.

Manon Doyle said...

Praying is the thing to do Renee. Having faith and putting out your positive energy.

I will quickly tell you about my stepson.

At 26 he became ill. The doctors tested him for everything. He needed a blood transfusion everyday because his platelets were so low. Long story short....he had aplastic anemia. He needed a bone marrow transplant right away. Finally we found a donor. The transplant was done and that was a terrible time in isolation. After 28 days the transplant had not taken and the doctors were thinking about going back to the donor for stem cells. We felt defeated. On day 30 a miracle happened and the platelets started going up. He kept improving everyday after that.

Justin spent four months total in the hospital but he made a complete recovery. He is now 36 and healthy and happy!

Through the darkest days we had faith. It pulled us through just as it will pull you through.

You are a very strong family. You will conquer the hurdles that need to be conquered

We all pray for you.


niknik said...

Держитесь! Да поможет Вам Бог!

Lisa said...

I have no words. As I read this post I cried and I laughed. I can't imagine the pain and I can't fathom the strength. What an incredible family you are.

sukipoet said...

i agree. am at a loss for words. sending prayers. remember to take care of you in all this, breathe.

studio lolo said...

Grace, dignity and courage.
That describes all of you times one million.

love you, and I'll keep praying.


Silver said...

i tell ya. it's got to be those darn chilled fruit sorbets. these things mess with your head.

Sarah said...

Aww darlin' such a painfull time. I'm sitting here just sobbing. Honey..I'm hugging you, can you feel it?? Big, gentle hugs. Love you hon, Sarah

yoborobo said...

God Almighty. What your family is going through. My heart breaks for Jacquie, I know she wants nothing but for Sheldon to get better. We moms are very fierce where our kids are concerned. I don't know if prayer works, but damn it, Renee, I am going to pray like a madwoman for you all, especially Sheldon. I wish I could run over to the hospital and donate blood for him. Damn the freeking chaos of life. Be strong and know we all love you. xox Pam

Marion said...

Oh, Renee, this just breaks my heart and pisses me off, too (at God, the Universe, what-the-hell-ever)!! Words are totally inadequate, but I love you, I love you, I love you and I'm praying for MIRACLES for you. (((HUGS)))!

Angela Recada said...

This is all so heartbreaking, dear Renee.

Your first paragraph summarizes exactly how I feel about religion and faith and prayer. I confess, I have come to the point where I say I pray for people, because it is terminology which is accepted. I really just try to focus on sending every bit of healing energy I can muster. Is that weird? It comes from the depths of my heart and soul. Maybe that is prayer, after all.

So I send you and Jacquie and Sheldon and your mom, too, all the good thoughts, healing energy, and love I can muster. I'm so glad to see you all still have your wonderful sense of humor. The ability to laugh, even in our darkest times, is a gift in itself.

I'm glad Jacquie will be in the same hospital as her dear Sheldon. . .

I'm sending you all my love, and healing cyber hugs,

kj said...

renee, in the perfect world of
# 9 and 3/4, your place is secured and you will be loved and cared for as long and as much as you need, and then some.

maybe marion and i can set up your house, renee. we'll make sure there is room for your whole family. would you like that?

real estate plans out of the way, please know there will not be a moment today that i will not be praying for jacquie and sheldon. this is truly as unreal as it feels, renee, and jesus christ please....

A Spoonful Of Sugar said...

Sending lots of hugs Renee! You and your family sound like incredibly strong people - dealing with such a difficult time with such grace and humour. But surely God enough is enough - give these wonderful people a break!

Debbie said...

This is just unbelievable. I am heartbroken for you that you are having to live with so much stress and pain.

secret agent woman said...

I read this one and like the posts before sit here stunned and at a loss. I don't know about prayer, and I can surely understand despairing. I'm just wishing you and your brave family well. Just wishing you well with all my heart.

Marion said...

Renee, I'm riding shotgun on your shoulder and I will tell you that MIRACLES DO HAPPEN. I personally know people who God has healed and I just had to tell you that to strengthen your hope. I think He totally understands you being pissed off. He said you only need faith the size of a freakin' mustard seed (smaller than a piss ant) to move mountains. Well, I have that much faith and MORE FOR YOU for your family's healing. I'm going to fast AND pray for your miracles.

And me and Karen are working like sons 'a bitches to build you a big old mansion here in blogland. Hell, just come live in my pink, pink, yes, I stink house with me!!! I have 15 bedrooms and 15 bathrooms. HA! I do SO love you!!! HUGS!!!!!!

Rikkij said...

hmm.. Marion and her piss ants again. don't even know what one are?? anyway-I agree, of course, with all she said. Movin on-
so much to think on here. I don't believe you will ever believe on nothing. 2 hospitals are strange. everyone stays to themselves and yet somehow are all family.3 excellent bout mom.4. so frikken sorry bout Jacquie 5 hopeful for Shel 6 thinking this incredible chaos just might be what's keeping you sane. sitting crosslegged in a soft chair in the dark drives despair to the edge. I hope you find peace and rest soon. 7 I love you! ~rick

Holly said...

Tessa said it best.."if love be a healing aid....take mine".

with all my heart and tears and prayers...


Jean said...

My life is but a weaving , between my God and me,
I do not choose the colors, He worketh steadily
Oftimes He weaveth sorrow, and I in foolish pride
Forget He sees the upper and I the underside.
Not till the loom is silent, and shuttles cease to fly
Will God unroll the canvas, and explain the reason why
The dark threads are as needful in the skillful Weaver's hand,
As the threads of gold and silver in the pattern He has planned.

The threads of our lives seem knotted and hopeless but we must believe that there is a crown on the other side. This life is full of heartache, pain and despair. BUT, we have hope in a better life to come. I pray that God will give you the peace that passeth all understanding and the encouragement to go on.

Great-Granny Grandma said...

I am so sorry, Renee, to hear about the setbacks. I so much want to leave you an uplifting comment, but don't know what to say except that I'm glad you haven't stopped praying and that I am praying too.

Deborah said...

Renee, I have no words, just wordless prayers, pure love bleeding from my heart, pouring out at the feet of Jesus. God understands our anger, and yet, we cannot understand God at times like this. Yet, I know full well that the life of God is stronger than death, and I am asking You, Lord, to bring it NOW. Sending you all my love, Deborah

Deborah said...

I forgot to tell you, Renee, how much I like the new header. Who is Kelly Vivanco who draws these incredible pieces of art? And, yes, I realize that I YELLED at God in my previous comment, but that is okay with Him too. One time, a long, long time ago, when my hubby ran his hand completely through a lawn mower, while waiting for the ambulance I began to panic...ran in the house for wet compresses and YELLED "Mother Mary, I need you NOW" (saying NOW as a mother's four-letter-word) and Mary came and completely took over my being and reduced me to pure love. Sometimes having a little fit is helpful...I love you, Renee, and all of your gigantic, crazy, wonderful family. Deb

Karin Bartimole said...

Dearest Renee,
thank you again for sharing this soul crunching journey with us. As difficult as it is to not desire prayers of specific outcomes to be answered, I know you are right - they are not answered, so I do not pray them. Only prayers of peace with what is, prayers for acceptance, prayers for faith in what has been placed before us being what we are meant to experience and confront, as devastating as the experience may seem. With the avalanche that has fallen upon you... i just don't know, as many before me have said, words can't deliver the desire for peace I wish I could offer... What does bring light to this god awful chapter is your description of the people you and your family are. Jacquie is such an inspiration, Sheldon a warrior - and all of you have so much love and strength as your join together to get done what needs to get done, picking up where one must pause, carrying another when needed, lightening the gloom with your enduring grace and humor, creating the space for tears and laughter, perfectly living the imperfection of life. I love you so,

Kelly Kilmer said...

Sending lots of love and hugs.

I'm so effing sick of cancer and what it steals from us...

Marie S said...

Love and hugs my pretty, love and hugs...

rochambeau said...

Dear Renee,
So sorry to hear this. Want to apologize that I didn't realize last week that your mother was also in the hospital! I thought she was there for visiting the others. Will also pray for her.

I don't know why all of this!
May tomorrow bring a new gift of healing for your family.

Sending love and a heart shaped wish for peace and healing for your and your family!

Debra Kay said...

I wanted to stop by and wish you well, both in the real world and the world of Blogland Lane.

I used to wonder if bad things were better one at a time or in groups but what does it really matter-hard times suck.

I'd like to squeeze your hand and have a cup of tea with you-and maybe someday, somewhere, somehow, we will.

Pattee said...

Like at the beach. A wave washes over you and pushes you into the sand you try to get up. You get to your knees, your almost up then another wave crashes you back into the sand.... over and over you try to get your footing in the sand...

You leave me appreciating with what I have instead of what I haven't.

The fact that you and your sisters and everyone can laugh is a testament to your love and commitment.

I know I've not believed in praying but I know of so many miracles that when I do pray (with others) I believe those prayers work!

My love goes to you Renee... your sister... and nephew

Lynn said...

Does it help to get words from a total stranger in blogland?
I almost felt ashamed reading your personal information of this magnitude of sadness, like a voyeur. But read it I did as it was so well written, and heartfelt.
And of course it touched my heart. Would have to or there would be something radically wrong with my heart! I'm sorry you and your family are having to suffer all of this. I am impressed beyond words by your aunt and her incredible will to live and desire and creed to enjoy life to the fullest no matter how long she has or what the cards dole out to her. We can all learn from her.
I can well understand that belief in anything would be hard put right now...anger at G-d/and/or the universe more likely...and okay! I'm glad there are people in those medical institutions with hearts and kindness too.
My arms reach out across the hug a total stranger who sounds like she could use all the hugs she can get right now.
Maybe carry a little note book to keep track of the rooms and floors...Oy...more hugs.

karengberger said...

I love your sense of humor, Renee.

I am so sorry you are all facing these horrors, but am so glad that you have each other and your humor. It is a miraculous gift.

I still pray, too. We are not suckers. There is something right in our prayers...our intentions for good to come into the world, especially where chaos is. I suppose prayer is a way of opening a channel so that love can flow freely. It seems to me that you are about love, so no wonder you can't stop praying. I thank God for that!

Baino said...

I have nothing to say to give you comfort Renee other than I feel awful for you all and you're all so brave and stoic. I pray for Sheldon the hardest, such a young man . . .all I can say is that he's in the best place right now, getting the best of care. Hold on sweet girl.

Elizabeth said...

I think Joan Didion said somewhere in her memoir that she believed in chaos and randomness. Hang in there, Renee, as you have been doing and as untold multitudes have done before you. It's all about love, I think.

Noreen said...

Renee, I am so lost for words.....

I can not begin to imagine how difficult this all is for you and your family, never mind your sister's pain and helplessness with regards to not being able even to be physically present with her son at this time.

I will continue to pray for for your family at this time.

Much love, Noreen

Bella Sinclair said...

I love you, Renee. Oh, God, how I love you. I love Jacquie and Sheldon. I am praying, because it's the only thing I can do from collapsing in helplessness.

All my strength and love to you all.


Lola said...

Jesus Renee, this IS too much. It is like lightning striking twice in the same spot, damn it.

It's unbelievable. I am heartbroken for you having to deal with all this pain and suffering.

My prayers go to Sheldon and your sister. And my heart races to you, dear Renee. Be strong. I feel so helpless...

I love you,

Teri and the cats of Furrydance said...

Oh Renee, I have followed your blog, maybe have never left a comment, but now it seems as if my single comment just can't encompass the heart ache, true ache, I am feeling right now.

One goes on, some stronger and with more conviction than others...this shows in what is going on in your llife right now.

Hope does spring eternal, that is what keeps us going, until it cannot any longer. I have been low, but never so low as that.

May hope keep you and those you love going and love keep you bouyed with hope...

Marie S said...

Howard is well Renee! The movement in his face is slowly coming back.
I hope all is well with you dear and you are taking a little bit of care for yourself.
I think of you and your family every minute of the day.

Love and hugs.

Art by Sascalia said...

So sorry for you Renee and I truly wish for you to see some happier times. Love and hugs.

Jaliya said...

God, Renee ... This is one of those no-sense times ... The shit hits the fan, and you're the fan. I love you!!!! I love your loved ones and am so glad you have each other. Dammit, every moment is so precious ... every breath, every gaze, every horrible joke, every mouthful of comfort food. If I was there I would make you all my mac 'n' cheese, which would probably finish the whole lot of you off -- but oh! what a way to clog your arteries! ... All we can do in the face of the big D. is love, laugh, collapse, and get up again. I love your cussing, your "What the fuck"s, the collective, sturdy spirit of your tribe. Dammit, we're all in this together. Love, love, and more love, dammit!!!!

xoxoxoxoxoxoxoxoxox ad infinitum!

kathy hare said...

there are no words...thinking of you all the time Renee.. xoxoxoxoxo

kj said...

renee, of course i see # 9 and 3/4.
what was i thinking? but i didn't know it had a bathroom...

your comment reminded me of 'the little prince': it is only with the heart that one can rightly see.

so seeing your space and place just took a minor not-mental adjustment...

i want to tell you most of my prayers are going to jacquie. i can't help it. i know sheldon has plenty of help and he is young. your beloved sister: how easy it is to understand how fiercely she wants to help her son. so i'm praying for her to do that in a way that she feels adequate and then i'm praying that surgery or something will at the very smallest least buy her some time.

anyway, damn damn damn.

with love

YayaOrchid said...

Still praying Renee.

I found a great blog, love her writing style, and thought of you as I read a lot of her posts. Maybe if you get a chance you can check it out? Here's the link:

lakeviewer said...

You are all in a maelstrom and all around you is chaos, just as you described. Buckle down, ride it out, hang on tight, do what you have to to keep breathing, keep laughing, keep praying. Do what you have to do to survive. One breath at a time, one prayer at a time. Keep the faith. Breathe deeply, deeply. This will pass, this will end.

Wendy said...

What an incredible family you have, Renee - all pulling together and making the most out of a really really heart-breaking situation.

God bless all of you. Will keep you in my thoughts and prayers.
p.s. - keep on laughing, it does make things feel better, even if just for a moment.
More hugs

Daria said...

Renee please take care of yourself ... this is more than a healthy person can handle never mind someone in your condition.

Jeanne said...

Many years ago, my 25-year-old brother-in-law died of a rare form of cancer. Five weeks to the day after his funeral, my father-in-law had a massive heart attack and died. And there among the grief was this tremendous sense of unfairness, that our family had paid our dues, and it was no longer our turn to suffer.

Who makes these decisions, anyway? Do they just fling misery around like so much paprika across a plate of deviled eggs, thinking it doesn't matter that some are almost solid red while others are untouched?

(Thinking of you and yours, my dear Renee, and hoping next week is a better one for all of you.)

Maithri said...

Wings of love dear friend,

Sending wings of love
to enfold you


Pattee said...

destThank you Renee...
The web wing you see is a shawl she's wearing, but I like your idea better.

I'm still whirling from my night with my son... I love him so much~as I know you know.
Love to you~Pattee

K said...

you are loved, you are prayed for, you are strong, you are one of a kind. you are inspiration

Poetic Artist said...

I know you must be tired..Just reading all of this makes me tired and like this can not be real. You are going through so much but something good has to come out.
My thoughts and prayers are still with you.

Draffin Bears said...

Hi Renee,

I am thinking of your family so much and nobody should have to go through so much pain and suffering.
I admire your strength and courage, you are all amazing.
I want to send all my love, hugs, prayers and best wishes to you all.

I love your new header.

Take care Renee and look after your sweet self too.
Carolyn xo

Yvonne Anderson said...

I think about you and your beautiful family every day Renee....

~Babs said...

You've got to be exhausted!
Still, so much good stuff comes out of chaos.
I can feel the love of your family all the way to this chair I sit in.That is no small thing.
And love works miracles,,expect them; they happen!
God IS love,,,and He hears. Everything.

isay said...

regards....sending you my bear big hugs in spirit and i hope you'll not mind if i'll have a little, just a little of your courage and strength.

Chrisy said...

Yes my darlin girl it really is too too much...horrible horrible things happening to wonderful people and oh yes wouldn't it be good if we could 'do a deal' to save the young ones...I know I only know you through cyber space honey...but I love you...and I want to you try...just get a little must look after you can be there for Jackie and Sheldon and the rest of your precious family...

Debra said...

There is nothing to say. You've covered it all.These are the times that strain our faith. I still pray but wonder at times if anyone is listening. This kind of news makes it hard, but I want to believe it will be okay. It is all I can do, pray. I am at a loss.

Anonymous me said...

Some things you wish and pray for do come true. God I hope so, I wish so, I am still praying every day that it is so. I hold you in my heart still, and every prayer I say has you, Jacquie, Sheldon & your mom in it. Renee, when things are so hard to bear it is way too easy to stop thinking about your own welfare, it almost ceases to matter, but please don't forget to look after yourself too. xx Jos

Mariana Soffer said...

Dying peacefully

Having considered all of this, if dying becomes no longer a contemplation but an actual experience, we can face it without fear. Not only can we face it without fear, we can also do a lot towards dying a good death. If we have led a good life, dying is easier. But regardless of how we have lived, we can still endeavour to die a good death. To help in the dying process, we stress very much the development of the same quality of fearlessness. Death is not to be feared, it's just natural.

The fear of death is often connected to the fear of pain. For many people it's more the fear of pain and the fear of separation from all that is loved that is fearsome. At the time of dying encouragement and reassurance are essential. For a start you need to reassure yourself. The pain is difficult to bear, but we are fortunate in that modern medicines make it possible to reduce the amount of physical pain a human being has to experience at death. Pain need not be such an overwhelming object of fear.

I usually reassure a dying person, such as someone who has cancer, that they won't be allowed to suffer, that they won't have to endure excruciating pain, that they will be given medicine. They certainly should be given medicine to alleviate the pain. An important result of this is that they can relax and die more peacefully.

The other worry is the separation from loved ones, from one's possessions. Of course, if we've contemplated this before, it's a lot easier. We know that to come together implies separation. That's all life is, a meeting and a separation. I came to Melbourne two months ago, in a few days I'll be leaving. That's just the way it is. If we contemplate that, it won't be so frightening to us. If a dying person hasn't done this kind of contemplation, then you need to gently encourage and reassure him or her that the children and those left behind will be taken care of. They need to be reassured that it's all right, that there are friends to take care of them, they need to be encouraged to relax and be peaceful, not to worry about other things, that they'll all be taken care of.

The whole emphasis is on trying to encourage the dying person, be it oneself or another, to become more peaceful. How can you die a good death? By becoming more peaceful. The Buddhist way is to try and maintain an atmosphere of peace in the room where someone is dying. It's not very good to have people shouting and screaming, waving and crying and tugging and pulling. What does that do to the poor person who has this very important thing to do, to die? They make it very difficult to die peacefully. Give those present time to become quiet. It is good if friends and relatives are present, people who can show by their presence that they care, that they love, that they are willing to let go, to reassure, to offer support - that's enough.

kj said...

how wonderful to see bella's avatar again. new growth happening here...

Meghann LittleStudio said...

My Dear Renee. I am marveling at the courage all of you have. This is God's gift. Yes, it sucks, but you are spending such quality time and laughing! Oh my gosh, if I had a family half your size I would love to laugh as you do. I have only my mom, dad and husband, and we try to spend quality time also. You are so blessed to have the family you have, loving each other throughout.
I am praying for you every day. I send you hugs and prayers and happy thoughts.
Much love, my dear Renee,
Meg xoxo

Allegra Smith said...

So, we are traveling to the other side of life, one filled with doctors, medicine, strange dreams and thoughts - I blame the chemistry for this - but above all a wish to do it right.
Whatever it may be. Jacquie of course has the right attitude. Regardless of what you believe in you must believe in yourself first. I don't think she is speaking of beating the cancer any more than I am. She is speaking of going into this chapter that very well could be the last with the same intent, the same wisdom, the same humor that helped her write all the other chapters in her life's book.

It is not about dying, it is about living to create with the same passion as if we were promised to live forever. The funny thing is that regardless of religion or beliefs science has proven that indeed some part of us will live in our purest form: energy. And that, my love, your entire family has enough to give away if you so wish and then some.

Sheldon is going through the perils of serious post-surgery but in my heart, with intent, I know he will be fine. Jacquie will do things on her own terms, and they are fine, real, compassionate and funny terms. We shall all respect and rejoice in whatever choice she makes.

As far as prayer goes...sigh. If one looks at the etymology
of Jacquie's name it will say perhaps that it is the female form of Jacob, and that among the many interpretations for Jacob one is "who G-d protects"
Any other questions?

You, you who spread more love about than just about anyone I know, you need to look after yourself in order to stay strong and stop thinking about the uncertainty of tomorrow. What is going to happen will happen not because of us, not against us, it will happen because life is fickle and so we need to get every drop of happiness from that life while it is here. Good memories are made of those moments, we seldom remember as a self defense mechanism the hours of anguish or fear. Thank goodness for that.

I would love to come over and make tea and bake scones and listening and hug you. Given the present circumstances I can only do that from here. I hope you know that you are cherished and that I am here if you need me.

laughingwolf said...

prayers sped your way...

Sue said...

Renee, I'm just playing catchup now on my friends' blog posts and am honestly at a loss for words at the
hell you and your family are going through.

I have no wisdom to offer, other than prayers that Sheldon will recover, that Jacqui will have a miracle and that you too will have one. Life really sucks sometimes.

Dawn said...

I get so angry reading your post and the unjustness of it all - how can such a GOOD family have to endure so much...why, why , why. All the nasty people in the world and hey they just carry on with nothing to upset their applecarts.

I cry, I wish I could hop on a plane and come and give you the biggest HUG.

Stay strong in all this madness Renee, I LOVE YOU and hope you know that!

Michelle said...

Beautiful post. I have a dear friend that just beat what you are faced with. There is hope darling and the fact that you are in touch with yourself and the world means you have a head start on it.

Clarity said...

Dear Renee,

I think from what I know of you and care for, that you are strong and can fight your battles.

Now your family is being tested and that is a greater test, because your love for them I think is more than that which you have for yourself. This is your ultimate battle Renee.

Fight it with Jacquie, fight it with a smile and hope. I know it may seem impossible but HOPE is the best medicine you can give. We do not know the future but going into it carrying hope is vital. Here for you via blog or email.

And...I am so glad your mother is better and that is the FIRST blessing in this test. I pray for more and more. Peace, strong heart, xxx.

Sandy said...

Awww, Renee, this sounds so awful. Huge hugs and gentle thoughts to you. If I could take some of this onto my shoulders I would. And then I would throw them off and stomp on them.

Lots of love. I'll be thinking of everyone.


Kate James said...

It amazes me that you have the energy to write so beautifully with all of this going on around you Renee...I'm guessing it's cathartic for you.

I love the way you make your family laugh - the love between all of you is so tangible and real. (BTW - I've never heard the term 'shit-fit' before. It cracked me up).

I love the new image - it's full of love. Just like you. x

Val Zdero said...

Oh Renee...I dont even know what to say anymore...hang in heart goes out to you and yours...lots of love Val xoxo

Anonymous said...

Oh Renee, there are no words to say how I feel. It is too much. I pray and pray for all of you. Give Jacquie my love. Barb

Woman in a Window said...

Renee, I argued with myself throught his whole thing. Yes, there is something to believe in, Renne, no there isn't. My god, how could there be? Yes, Renee, there must be. And in the end of this post, in the final word, the final letter, the final act of pain received by your family and yet worn and dare I say, laughed with for a time, there is something to believe in. Your grace. Your family's grace. Grace. You all have it in spades. I still hope there is more.

Cornerstoregoddess said...

Sending hope and hugs.

nollyposh said...

Hugs & Love for you my friend...
i will start SCREAMING my prayers for you... so they WILL hear!
(i once found out that for the year i cried for my dad to come back to me in spirit, after he died, that he was standing by me all the time, i believe sometimes great sadness is like a sunblock curtain to sunlight)
i will never cease to be amazed that everyday you manage one step in front of the other Renee in these difficult times, and still you are able to make us laugh with your 'warts and all' approach to life, You are a great inspiration to us all, in all your beautiful human-ness and a true Earth Angel in every sense of the word <3

Ribbon said...

Pain overload!

it makes me hold my breath.... can only imagime what it does to you and your family.

big love always xxx

kendalee said...

Renee, I am compelled to comment even though I have nothing but a loss for adequate words to offer. I don't pray, but this is the sort of thing that makes me wish I had the faith to do so. Like Tessa, all I can really offer is compassion, and hope it makes even the teeny, tiniest difference, for a nanosecond. I'm thinking of you. With love. LOVE.

Lizzy Frizzfrock said...

Renee, so much... too much. My thoughts and prayers are with you & yours. Love, Cheryl