After I wrote another blog post, A Valentine’s Day Story, Valentine’s Day came and went. It didn’t bother me at all. I expect nothing anymore and am grateful for absolutely everything.
I was really happy though on Valentine’s Day because an angel had sent a Fandango gift card to Someone in a cute doggie Valentine’s Day card. (I keep all cards for Someone to “read.” He loves the colors and pictures and every once in awhile he gets one with music and laughs and dances to them over and over and over again, intentionally being silly and enjoying them.)
Other than me and the dogs, or a trip to the doctor or an occassional outing to a store, his primary day consists of sleeping and watching television–and watching television means seeing lots of ads for new menu additions at the local fast food places and ads for movies to see. Every once in awhile, he will ask–and he rarely asks for much–to go see a particular movie. (Thank you our precious angels for your Valentine’s cards and prayer cards, too. I will be writing to everyone next week. God willing.)
He has been asking to go see several movies lately but the Fandango card allowed me to pick one–I had to pick the one that made the most sense. Someone wanted to go and see the movie about the rock group Queen–and to go see it in a theater–not on TV–because of the “awesome” sound systems that theaters have–never mind that it would take a year or so until it was on “non-pay” TV–so “Bohemian Rhapsody” it was. I agreed with him.
Everywhere I checked, the movie was only playing very late or later at night and that was not going to be possible. It is difficult enough to manage a LBD. (Lewy Body Dementia affected people “sundown”–after dusk and until dawn, it becomes a time behaviorally that tests the absolute best of us. I’ll save this subject for another time.) I said a prayer and told God that I would try one last time to do a search on my laptop. I was really, really tired but I wanted to give these tickets to Someone for Valentine’s Day. I found that there was a one day, special matinée showing coming in a few weeks to a theater right near us! Thank you Jesus!
I printed out the tickets, put a few red heart stickers on it and a tiny picture from the movie jacket cover (trying not to use too much ink) and folded it up and put it all back in his angel’s card. After he woke up mid-afternoon (most LBD people don’t go to bed until after dawn), I wished him a “Happy Valentine’s Day” and handed him the card. When it registered what the card was holding, his precious tickets, he was soooooo happy! All day and night long, whenever he passed me or thought about it, he came over and gave me a bear hug! Someone said he was giving hugs to everyone who sent him the tickets or who just cared about him. I was almost squished from so many hugs (but in a good way)!!
Two days later, I closed my computer and thought everyone, and especially Someone, was asleep and went to take a nap.
Surprise! When I woke up, and after I fed everyone breakfast and took care of medical needs and potty breaks, I went to my laptop. This is what I saw:
The note on the front left corner says: “The World is a Better Place with You in it.”
My heart was so amazed and touched by the thoughtfulness of this that I just stood there. He may have been late but he didn’t forget. He can’t write well any more so the impact of how long it took him to write the little note near the key pad brough me to tears. And while he doesn’t use my name any more, he took off his CPAP mask and got up (I moved my writing desk into the bedroom), put his arm around me and said, “I love you, Sweetheart,” and kissed me on the forehead. “I hope you don’t mind that this is late. I wanted to wait until the candy went on sale.” (We had run errands the day before.) Certainly a Valentine’s Day to remember.
The constellation of stress and responsibility of helping a herd of special needs dogs but especially a significant other with a terminal neurodegenerative disease are crushing in many ways. Please help in any way that you can when you can.
This weekend, while I was trying to write the 400 plus pages for the Reconsideration Request to restore his Medicare (he accidentally got his medical insurance cancelled using the wrong words trying to get something corrected), my beloved Charlee went from critical to intensive care and then passed away from complications of Congestive Heart Failure (more on Charlee’s life soon). I was near or with him every second of every day/night during this time right until God called.
(I have learned that animals don’t want to pass/transition alone–people don’t either. It is great comfort to them to have someone hold them and reassure them during the last days, especially hours. I have also learned that if an animal/person passes alone it is because they lovingly want to leave you with the memory of them alive.)
After taking care of “my” Charlee’s needs and trying to get my eye swelling down from crying, I began writing again. Pasha then went from critical to intensive care and is now on the verge of God calling. She spent the night in my arms while I talked to her, told her stories about her life, reassured her, syringed sweetened water (for a little energy) into her mouth and to keep it from drying out, cleaned up messes (from both ends) and occassionally thought of how Someone’s Medicare papers are so close to being finished but Life and Love is more important than anything–and that includes even the end of Life. I want each and every dog to know that they are loved, knew loved and know that they don’t have to be scared of what is ahead–life after life is so beautiful and I make sure that they know that.
Hopefully by the end of the week, I will be able to submit the paperwork. We may have two more angels that we know in heaven as well. They both had long, happy lives once they arrived at the Rescue Ranch and were loved by many, thank God.
How to Help?
Prayers. cards to fast-food restaurants like Taco Bell, McD’s, Burger King, KFC, etc. are needed–to feed Someone AND the dogs (I mix into kibble or feed straight for those who are particular or sick, will eat Whopper patties or shakes or McDoubles or chicken fingers or eggs or or or) as are amazon credits and generic Visas.
(Please have mercy–on me. I can’t afford to take the time to cook all of this myself when there are so many other pressing things to do. The gift cards are a literal godsend.)
Address: Rescue Ranch, 4057 Riley Fuzzel Road, Ste. 500-130, Spring, TX 77386
E-anything please send to: firstname.lastname@example.org
Grateful. So very, very Grateful.
(We pray for you always in all ways.)
For more information about Lewy Body Dementia, please go to lbda.org
To rescue, adopt, foster, help rescue animals (of all types and sizes!), please go to: petfinder.com and do a zip code search one you get the type of animal and age selected.