Unbuckling my Seat Belt

Oh hey they there blog, I know it’s been forever since I have written here.  Hold on a sec let me unbuckle my seat belt.  I have been buckled in for about 6 weeks now.  Buckled in for a pretty wild ride! 

I am just now slowly beginning to emerge from the crumbles and the chaos of it all.

So what has been going on you ask…..well where do I begin??

Let ‘s start with Memorial Day weekend………

m lax 2

Madi had qualified for an all day National lacrosse tournament in Maryland that weekend. I had arranged for the wonderful agency we were using to care for Curt to be at our house at 5:30am on Sat.   All went well and we did the same thing again on Sunday.  It was a busy weekend for Curt, but he managed.  Then on Monday I drove 5 hours down to pick up Tyler at Liberty and 5 hours back with Curt along for the ride.

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It was after that crazy weekend that I began to see Curt unravel a bit.  The ride home from Liberty was long, and he was leaning over quite a bit and kept saying, “I need to get out of here.”  He had a rough week after that, the one saving grace was Tyler was home to provide some much needed comic relief and fun for him.

Later that week, Tyler and I ventured an hour away to see a sports spine specialist about his ongoing back problems that had significantly worsened. (He literally could not stand up straight, my normally 6’4 son was looking about 6ft tall, plus he had lost about 20lbs!) The Dr. pretty much said at this point surgery is his best option. Surgery was then scheduled for 2 weeks later on June 12th.

Somehow, I continued to limp through the last  few weeks of school.  I worked in a rather lame attempt to “give it my all”, but there wasn’t much left in the old tank to give.

Curt continued to decline and needed so much more help with even the simple things after that trip to Liberty.

 Then the day before Tyler was scheduled for surgery he texted me at school to let me know he woke up that morning with a bad headache and a fever!  That pretty much sent me over the cliff……..or at least right to the edge of  it!  Through a series of phone calls with the Dr and Physician’s assistant, we decided to proceed with surgery the next day.  He would be assessed again in the morning.

He was the first person scheduled for surgery that day which meant we had to leave the house at the beautiful hour of 3:45am.  (Which means I was up at 2am, wide awake and worrying….you know something us mothers can really do well when needed! :) )

T before surgery

My parents came to be with Curt that morning until his regular caregiver could be there.  All went well with surgery and they pumped Tyler full of antibiotics to help with the fever and what was probably a sinus infection . (I should mention that Tyler has NEVER, EVER had a sinus infection, so I guess the day before surgery is a good time to get your first sinus infection….NOT)  We arrived home late that afternoon.  The next day, June 13th  was my last day of school with my students.

Somewhere amidst all the back surgery fog, end of school fog and the Curt decline fog….I had sat down and talked with a local reporter about a short essay I had written for the “Chicken Soup for the Soul Alzheimer’s Edition” and about living with Younger Onset Alzheimer’s in our 40′s (ok, ok …. now officially in our 50′s).  I knew the article was going to be published the weekend of June 14th, but  honestly, with so much going on, I had forgotten about it until a friend texted me to tell me how surprised she was to open up her Sunday paper to find a pic of Curt and I on the front page of the Lifestyle section!!!!!  (At that point, picture in your mind a minor freak out by me, the front page??  What?!!?! Is it a good pic? Do I look fat? How is the article?)

But there I sat at a lacrosse tourney with Curt and Madi, about and hour away from home and unable to get the paper or read it.  I actually did not get to read the article until after the tournament finished later Sunday afternoon.  It was a very sweet article and well done.  And the accolades for Curt that came as a result of the article blessed my heart immensely.

( You can read the article here)

The hoopla that ensued from the article was endearing.  Several former students got together to start a fundraiser for Curt.  They are selling T-shirts to raise money for ongoing care for Curt. (Check here for info on the T-shirt fundraiser and if you go to the site you can also see a cool TV interview with myself and Curt’s former student) I also got several letters in the mail from students,  made new facebook connections with different people who read the article and once again saw the goodness, kindness, and amazing generosity of our community.  Donations were also sent to a local fund set up for Curt.  I was AMAZED one day when I went online to check the account so I could make a payment to a local provider for Curt and found a generous amount of money has been contributed to the account.  It truly was God’s perfect timing!!!

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Then on June 17th in the crazy month of June, Curt and I had our 25th anniversary.  It was a bittersweet day, he enjoyed the specialness of the day, but  he really does not grasp the fact that we are married anymore.  But he knows I am his honey and he loved knowing it was a special day for us….so that was good enough for me.  The day was also made so special for me just by the simple care of a few good friends who went the extra mile for us/me that day. :)

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Our honeymoon in Vt/Maine/NH 25 years ago!

 

So as Tyler was recovering well, and Madi continued with lacrosse tournaments every weekend,  I  struggled through the LONG 7 days teachers had to go to school for inservice days after the students left.  Somewhere in the chaos of it all we got word that there was an opening at the main care facility I was looking at for Curt.

So once again, I had some freak out issues, surely I was not emotionally ready for this, how do I tell Curt about moving, and on and on the issues and emotions went.  Moving Curt to a full time care facility was something I was not yet ready to do, yet I did in a practical sense feel  it was time.  But emotionally that is a whole other issue…………

So arrangements were made for him to move in July 2!  A week ago today he moved into a wonderful care facility.

And for now that is where I will leave you…..this post has already gotten VERY LONG!  Do know that it has been an adjustment for Curt and for all of us.  So continue to pray for peace for Curt during the transition from home to the memory care facility.  I will finish this and update more next week. 

C with Paisely

Curt at the memory care facility.  And yes they allow Paisely to visit!  He loves having her come along to visit.

But geez, I am exhausted just reading through this…..ha ha.  Usually when I finish a post I do try to add something God has been teaching me. 

 

But guess what folks……I got nothing. 

Not that God hasn’t been teaching me a TON.

  But for now, I am off to focus this week on the R’s of life.

Renewing

Refreshing

Relaxing

Reviving

Reading

Restoring

 

Thanks for walking the journey with us, each one of you makes this journey so much easier!

 

 

 

 

 

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11 responses »

  1. Thanks for sharing with us Sandy. It reminds me how to pray. Your story and the way in which you handle this journey is evident that the Lord is carrying you through~It inspires me.

  2. Wow – I feel so pressured with much less than that going on – I can only imagine how you’ve felt. It’s a testimony to Gd’s grace that you have made it through.

    I can’t imagine how heartbreaking it must’ve been to place Curt in a facility, even knowing that it was going to happen sooner or later. I hope he gets great care and that God continues to give you all grace as you adjust and continue on.

  3. Thanks for taking the time to update us. So much going on in your family! Joining with others in letting you know I continue to pray for you all, and especially for this transition to Curt’s new place. Wish I could see you in person and give you a big hug!

    Loved watching the news story and getting to actually hear your voice. :) Great!

  4. No wonder you’ve been silent here. So much life happening. Praying for all of you in this journey. It is a very good thing that Curt is safely in his new home. I cannot imagine how hard that must have been for you. Too many people selfishly wait too long to make that decision. Your commitment to him is a beautiful thing to behold.

  5. You continue to inspire and amaze me. Thank you for sharing this window into your life – God’s grace is amazing and evident as seen in you. May those “R’s” be yours in full! Praying for you, Curt and your kids. xo

  6. Sandy, do you mind if I share this with my small group tonite?? we have been praying for you guys and I know you don’t know us but….we are all united in Christ and my heart has sometimes been so full of love and heartache, and joy, and amazement for you and your family and yet I don’t even really KNOW you other than through blogging and FB. Please know that I care and that I always look forward to reading your updates. I can’t even imagine the range of emotions you and Tyler and Madi must be feeling regarding your precious husband/dad. You are a true inspiration. Those R’s sound perfect for you!! be blessed today.

  7. So much going on for you. I pray you just get some super restoration time from the Holy Spirit. My heart broke when I read about Curt’s move but at the same time I am praying he adjusts well.

  8. I know that God has to be with you daily because with everything you have gone through with this disease you could have never done by yourself. Praise God for his faithfulness to you and your family. Your such an encouragement to others. I am praying for you.

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