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Thanks for sharing your experiences . . .


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Lovely to hear from you and pleased that you're both being looked after. I think you have to be a special sort of person to be in the profession of looking after people and even more special when you are looking after those that are in their final days.


Lots of love and thoughts.


Vx

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Thinking of you loads Mo, as you continue your vigil. I hope Peter had a comfortable night and that you managed to grab some sleep.

Much love

W&M xxx

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I came home at 0500 this morning for a short nap and freshen up. I've just rung the hospice, he's still waiting for his train and much the same as when I left him. His breathing is so harsh, it sounds like noisy snoring and it's been like that for more than 36 hours. I'll have a shower and go back there in half an hour or so.



M

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Back at the hospice now. They have turned him on his side and he seems more comfortable. What a fighter.


Peter was an Action Man in his youth. Diving, climbing, skiing - he worked as a ski instructor at weekends in the winter. Not especially because he wanted to share the beautiful scenery and the exhilaration of skiing downhill on pristine snow; it was really because the tight black trousers and scarlet sweater were a babe-magnet, and instructors were expected to participate fully in apres-ski activities. And I'm sure he was only too pleased to cooperate with the ski-school owners, and perfected an Austrian accent to improve his chances. Which was fine, until he tried to entertain some pretty young German girls . . .


Watching him now I can imagine him doing a tricky ice-climb and clinging on to a ledge by his fingertips until he could find a safe foothold. Determination, persistence, and plain bloody-mindedness ensured his survival in all sorts of risky situations.


So he's fighting on until he's good and ready to get on that train.


M

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Quickasyoucan

Mo he sounds like my dad who waited for his train far longer than we expected. For a man who lost both parents to heart disease his stubbornly kept on going. I know you are in limbo and the end will be a shock but I am hoping that like me you have done much of your grieving along the way so that the last moments bring peace as well as sorrow. I often think of your Peter dousing himself in after shave for his chemo visits. Used to bring a smile to my face in dark days. Xxx

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I have been thrown out of the hospice. Not literally, but firmly advised by the lovely doctor in charge of Peter that I am exhausted and would benefit from some time out. Trouble is that while I am with him I find it so distressing listening to his breathing that I want to run away and as soon as I get home I want to go back to him again.


So I've come home to find that Boo has discovered how to get the lid off the kitchen bin, which has remained unemptied for several days. He has embellished my dirty kitchen floor with assorted refuse which hasn't improved things much. He has also emptied his toy box and I can count 27 assorted mice and teddies and his corks and bottle caps (don't ask) all over the place. And then he sat outside Peter's bedroom door and wow-wow-wowed until I opened the door for him. So he's been distracted by some Dreamies and I've got the TV on. Don't ask me what I'm watching it's just audible wallpaper as far as I'm concerned.


There's a little cafe run by the hospice and I went for a sandwich at lunchtime. They served the sandwich with a little pot of coleslaw and some assorted salad, and I picked out all the sliced peppers to put them on Peter's plate in exchange for the cucumber from his salad . . . So I was in tears again over a few bits of sliced peppers. I wrapped up my sandwich in the napkin, stuffed it in my handbag, and left.


So I'm having a 'restful' evening and doing naf-all. Did I tell you about Peter's last really lucid words ? It was before he had been completely zonked out with sedatives, and the lovely kind nurses were trying to get him to go for a pee in his designer en-suite wet room. He wasn't having any of it, and in his confused state was arguing the case quite robustly. I took his arm to encourage him, and he sat bolt upright and said, very clearly and loudly, "Mo, for flip's sake". But he didn't say "flip". Other women may treasure murmured words of love, but I'll cherish those few words for the rest of my life.


So we're still in the waiting room. I'm stressed to bits and fraying round the edges, but Peter lies comfortably, breathing unevenly, so that every time he holds his breath I do too. He is being moved every couple of hours and pampered and cared for by his lovely nurses.


Boo and I are off for a power-nap now. Or snooze. Not too deeply, though, in case the hospice phones.


X

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Hey Mo, There was some things M said to me that resonated on the night of dad passing. I did not want to go in there and I found the breathing very distressing - I remember saying to her I almost breathe for him with every breath. I only went back in for 2 minutes to stand on the edge and say my goodbyes and that was hours before he died - the rest of the time I paced the corridor like an expectant dad and I consider myself a strong person. Some people were saying I would regret not being there and others saying it doesn't matter. What made my mind up was M saying that I can make as many decisions as I like - stay out, go in, change my mind as it suits because there are no right answers, only my answers and if i didn't see him again it will not make any difference to him because he loves me and for now he is in transition. (I hope you don't mind me saying this M). There are no awards for sitting by the bed and waiting compared to those who travelled the journey with them and it will not influence what happens. The big thing that really made my mind up was M saying that there is no merit in witness, especially if it makes the parting harder and distresses him and me - and it would have been distressing for all if I was there. You look after yourself and don't second guess anything because I am afraid it is just pants whatever way you do it. Perhaps you will be there and perhaps you won't - the hospice staff I understand can tell when the time is drawing nearer and you are close. The answer will come.


My last two sentences from my dad was me telling him I love him for the first time in my life (we just never did as a family) and he said I love you too for the first time. And then the night before the night before he died he said are you staying with me and I said yes (as I set up a camp bed) and he was happy. We had confusion around this and that lucidity was special and only for me. It is lovely that Peter's words to you are you as a couple and made you smile.


Get some sleep my lovely and give Boo a hug from me. x

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I couldn’t cope with the horrible breathing which is why I asked for the oxygen. Just do whatever you feel is right Mo. When I got the call to come back straight away to the hospice it was still 11 hours before he passed but these things are unpredictable. You want to be there but you also need rest or you’re no good to anyone. Xx

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The hospice rang me at 0730 this morning because I had asked to be told of any changes, and they had noticed a difference in Peter's breathing. So I fed Boo, washed my face, forgot to comb my hair because I don't look in mirrors anymore, and came here.


The body which is housing my beloved is noisy and creaky and producing unpredictable gasps and gurgles. He is in there somewhere, and that's all that matters so I am not going to refer to the sound effects again. I have also asked that visitors be kept out. If they've been kind enough to make the journey then I will sit in the lounge with them and chat for a few minutes but I don't want anybody else seeing my proud Highlander like this.


I'm OK; I'm buoyed up with your support. I think I prefer virtual hugs to real ones and I am avoiding all those genuinely kind people who want to enfold me in their bosoms. I'm withdrawing a little bit from people because this is my situation and I don't want to share it. Forum Family is different. We're all on Planet PC after all.


X

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You are getting a lot of cyber hugs sent to you Mo from all of us. All of dads brothers and sister came to dad on the night he died but at the end it was just my mum and my sister and I think that is how dad would have wanted it. Such strong warriors deserve to keep their dignity. Much love. DG

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Mo, that's just how I felt, we are all there with you, and your proud highlander, in spirit, love sandrax xx yet more ((hugs)) should you need them

Edited by sandraW
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Much love Mo...the sitting and waiting is a strange time...Nige was surrounded by his family when he died, and my Dad was too (except me) and I think that's what they would have wanted...but you are absolutely right to do what's right for you and Peter.


Lots of virtual hugs (I hate being hugged by real people)..


Vx

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Oh Mo...I feel so, so sad for you. Peter was amazing, you've been amazing. You're now amongst many of us who have gone before you...and we will help you through.


Sleep tight Peter.


Vxx

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I am so sorry Mo, he was such a brave warrior. You both did so well and we are proud of you both and humbled.


Until you two meet again we will be forever by your side - you know where we all are.


Love you Mo.


DG

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