Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Holidays Are Tough

It's that time of year where we are to be of good cheer.  But as a new widow I find that December is hitting me like a ton of bricks.  I think Abby senses it too.

A couple of Sundays ago we sang the song "Oceans" in worship. Abby, beside me, started crying. This song was a part of Jesse's last night with us, and it brought back memories to her.  Later that day she and I went to Fired Up Pottery off Monona Drive in Madison. I made her a glass fused pendant of different hues of blue glass...I told her it was her Oceans Pendant.

They finished a book in Literacy today called the Outsiders. Apparently a character passes, and the hospital scene and his death is described. It brought those memories back to Abby again. Fortunately she and her teacher had worked out a code at the beginning of the school year for when she would get upset and need to step out of the room to compose herself. Afterall, writing is to reflect one's soul, and unpleasant experiences can arise and be relived through the assignments.

It has been six months, and perhaps that is the window where life becomes a little more calm after the storm of a death, and the heart ache really sets in.  Kyle, is still, as unemotional as ever. I wonder if he will ever outwardly show his feelings. I am proud of how he has stepped into the role of being man of our household.

So it is the season...I admittedly have no motivation to put up a decoration. Christmas music, which usually puts me in a great mood, has me shedding tears instead.  It is simply a reminder that my husband won't be with us on Christmas morning. I mourn the loss of those special holidays that were to be a part of our future, a part of growing old together. Although I know that Jesse is going to be having his most glorious Christmas ever in heaven, I feel robbed of his presence.

I miss his gentle gaze, his touch, everything that made up who he was before he became sick. It was really hard to work today, I really just wanted to crawl back in to bed. I did not accomplish much, but I did refrain from succumbing to a behavior that would not serve me or my family. It is not what Jesse would have wanted.  As my friend Sherri said this evening, he is always with me. Each and every day. I just have to get used to the "with me" being of the spiritual world rather than the physical.

And so it is December, it too shall pass, and I will actually be glad for it I feel. I feel for everyone who has experienced a loss and struggles at this time.  I know people still visit this blog, which is pretty interesting since it has been so dormant. I am putting my energies towards Purely Living Wellness and growing my business to sustain my family. Thanks for visiting - and if you are mourning this holiday season - may you find some sense of peace through the tears.

Blessed by two wonderful children,

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Freedom - Independence from toxins Would Be Nice

Several weeks have gone by since Jesse passed. He may be gone but I am not done ...I am continuing my research. Listening to webinars.
Two friends have been diagnosed with cancer since his passing. I keep on studying and learning so that I can continue to help others.

I am still looking for answers - not that it will change my status as a widow/single parent - but it is information that could help others, and this is truly what God has called me to do.

I was surprised at how quickly Jesse's on line medical chart became inaccessible. I did not have a chance to download his last lab results. I would have liked to have had the graph combining all his PSAs - as the last one would have shown a substantial drop.  Another positive was his hemoglobin had come up above the threshhold for needing a transfusion. Had I already mentioned this? the oncologist said it could never happen...but it did. Thanks to Mike "Doc" Witort and the last few weeks off the Rx.

What I really want to read the fine print on is the Oxycontin and Oxycodeine painkiller side effects.  What issues have been reported as a side effect for lung. Any ruptured lungs perhaps?

I do wonder if Jesse and I had been given full disclosure on all the potential side effects...would we have gone the route of medical marijuana for pain control. It doesn't kill a person like prescription drugs do....but since it is not legal in Wisconsin Jesse wanted to keep things legal...despite my four books stating the healing benefit and testionies of cancer being cured by THC compoment of this God-given herbal remedy.

We are gatheringn to celebrate Independence Day. Freedom.  How about freedom from Big Pharma. Freedom from Monsanto. Freedom from chemicals in our food that make fora population in which cancer is growing and growing and growing.

We celebrate Independence, and I encourage all to seek independence from toxic chemicals - in your food, in your skin care lotions and make up, on your lawns and parks. We truly are held prisoner in a toxic country. Perhaps we need a new freedom movement.  Now that sounds a bit radical.... a bit of anger no doubt. Jesse's death was unnecessary.  We were ignorant of side effects. It's wrong.

So for those on Rx - ask for the DEEAILED print out from your pharmacist. There are always two. The short list and then the one that has all the additional things that can go wrong. Read it.

Peace to you,

Saturday, June 13, 2015

Another Sign from Heaven

Jesse's favorite bird. a bluebird, landed yesterday in our yard outside the kitchen window where his sister Daleah and I ware going through sympathy cards. This is an odd time of year as bluebirds usually do not gather in our yard until fall migration.

It was a sign - the bluebird of happiness - note how the color of the bluebird matches the color of the hooded sweatshirt he loved to wear. Coincidence? I think not. I suspect we will receive many signs from the heavens - since Jesse was fond of all flying creatures. If you are missing him - keep your eyes open for gifts dropped from heaven.

Jesse is reassuring us of the joy he is living in Heaven.

There is peace, joy, wholeness, and BEAUTY of God's creation surrounding him at all moments. Here on earth, Jesse used binoculars to see the details of a bird.  But imagine, in Heaven, every detail is magnified and his eyes are soaking up the intricacy and beauty beyond his imagination. 

Jesse is in his intermediate home that we call Heaven. One day we, who believe in Jesus and have asked Him into our hearts, will be together for eternity on the New Earth.  If you loved my Jesse, and want to learn more on how to have relationship with the Lord so that you can be reunited with him again for all eternity, please don't hesitate to talk to myself, or Kyle, or Abby.

The Creator of all longs to know you and wipe out any fear you may have of dying. It is a beautiful place to be ...to know where you are going, free of gnashing teeth, and instead - Holiness and complete, divine joy.

Peace to you!

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

A Bed Too Large

His side of the bed
Lies empty and forlorn
My side has a broken heart
And a body that’s worn

His side had a man
Who held my hand while we slept
Who made me feel safe
And wiped every tear that I wept

Our vows were forever
‘Til death do us part
The bed seems so huge
Like the hole in my heart

So I cry myself to sleep
And I cry myself awake
To be strong another day
Until my soul He doth take.
(Rita Shimniok 6-11-15)

My first thought every night (or early morning) when I crawl in to bed is how big the bed is without Jesse. It does not matter that it had been empty for months as the sciatica kept him from lying in our bed, we both thought he would be back in it and we could love and cuddle one another once again.

Bit was not a part of the bigger plan. I do not question our holistic treatment. I do question how one man could have so many medical issues thrown on him all at once, and I do get angry and ask, no, scream, WHY?!!!!!!  I curse Satan and yell at it - Jesse did not waiver in his faithfulness, and God brought him Home. Like Job, Jesse's victory through death prevailed.

Jesse and I prayed many times for this journey not to pass without learning from it. We learned much, about each other, about God, the darkness in this world, and the love that binds a couple together through the worst of times. Our eyes were opened.

As I rise up to this day, my eyes will continue to be open to the lessons yet to come, and they will continue to shed tears for the emptiness in my bed.


Tuesday, June 9, 2015

You're Invited to a Celebration of Life

Peace Amidst Great Sorrow

Here I sit, my first full day as a widow. I hear birds chirping, singing and squirels chattering and scolding. It is beautiful in this backyard. Jesse's Oasis.
This is where he loved to enjoy a cup of coffee early in the morning and meditate upon God's word. Evenings we would sit around the fire pit as a family, making smores, and Abby often sitting in her father's lap.
My heart has such a huge hole in it right now. One might think I would be more prepared for this, but I am not. Jesse had been improving. He had more strength and was using the trapeze over his bed to work his arms. He slept a lot last week and we stayed ahead of the pain making sure he took a dose regularly. He asked me to help work his legs both Saturday and Sunday, and he had good strength in the PT exercices. Best of all these past few days he was having no pain, and this past weekend he took very little pain medication.
Late Sunday afternoon something changed. He was being especialy grateful ...as if thanking me several times a day was not enough. He was gazing off, not really seeing what was around him. I couldn't figure out what was going on. Jesse said, "Lord?" with his eyes fixated towards the ceiling.
"Just a little more time with my family please". And quite honestly, at this point I started to freak out. I realized that I was losing him, and the Lord had come to take him Home.  I asked if he wanted Abby and Jesse, and he said yes.  We gathered around his bed, with the wren singing outside the window on the new bird house that had been occupied shortly afer it was put up, and prayed over him. The kids left the room.
Jesse's breathing changed and I wasn't sure what was happening. His voice was barely audible. I asked if he wanted an ambulance and he said yes. I called Agrace, and then 911,
For whatever reason, a lung had ruptured, and the hospital staff was able to use a procedure to drain the fluid. I wno't go into details, but he surprised the doctor on staff that night by resting comfortably. He had no pain, and those of us along his bedside, including friends from our amazing church life group, tapped. Yes, Jesse asked for tapping - on his trigger points to release endorphins for the pain. I think the hospital staff were surprised every time they asked if he had pain and he said he did not think so.
Friends had grabbed the tablet from home and we played his favorite praise songs by Fernando Ortega for him.  Monday morning Jesse's breathing started to be laborous again, and as he took his lasts, "Our Great God" was playing softly in his ear. Each time we sang this song in worship my quiet and more reserved husband, would lift both of his hands to the sky in PRAISE to his Heavenly Father. I prayed for his journey, that Jesse find full peace and embrace fully the presence of the Light and enter into eternal joy and rest.
"Hallelujah! Glory be to Our Great God! Hallelujah! Glory be to our Great God."  Death has lost it's sting, there is VICTORY in Jesus.
Jesse was never much of a writer, and the only book he ever read cover to cover was the Holy Bible, but when he did share on this blog it was with intent and on purpose. He wanted YOU to know that the the most perfect love in this world comes from having relationship with Jesus. I hope those of you seeking acceptance andlove in this world will find his words, and open your heart to his loving messages.
As I type this, a chickadee leaves the bathng rock, and a white feather flutters to the ground. Yes, my love is with me always. My heart cries out in anguish, but my soul knows that we will be reunited once again, when I journey into the everlasting arms of Jesus.

As Jesse said at the end of his posts, PEACE!

Saturday, June 6, 2015


The title for today's update comes from a phone conversation I had with Mike "Doc" Witort wwek.
We BELIEVE and TRUST that God is at work through this journey. God does not need any help in  healing people....that's for sure. His omnipotence is fully capable of whatever He decides to do.
We had a visit Thursday from a lovely couple in their 80s, members of Full Speed Impact Ministry. Gene has a pretty cool story - he was at the Agrace center for a while, having been diagnosed with prostrate cancer, metastacized  - grapefruit sized tumor sticking out of his neck. The short of Gene's story is he was prayed over, miraculously healed, and left Agrace. Before leaving Gene did go to heaven...with a choice to go right, and enter into the great peace and joy that awaited him, or go left and return to his wife. Because much was left unsettled, Gene chose to return to his wife to help her even though he very much wanted to join the divine realm. Yes, Heaven does exist. Gene now ministers to and prays with others.
We sense something big is going to happen. Of course we do not know what God has in store for us, but we do know that He had designed the body to heal and wants that for each of us. I know many have questioned the wisdom in not using the Lupron therapy offered to Jesse - and am repeating a previoous post from early on in the journey that explains the side effects, which include "may produce tumor in the bones". Everyone we know who has had Lupron treatment has had a 2nd go round, with cancer in the bones, and all but one (whose 2nd bout with cancer began shortly after Jesses') have passed. Jesse was aso not a candidate for chemo or radiation - but even if he had been - he does not feel that God would ask him to poison his body to heal it. It makes no sense to either of us, especially when one reads the bible to learn of all that God has provided for healing.
So a quick update - today marks one month from which Jesse had his first therapy session with Mike "Doc" Witort, from Chicago. I won't explain all that Mike does when he spends 3 hours plus with us, but I will share that we had lab work results this week and the numbers look good.  The PSA dropped 400 points, which has really surprised Jesse's family doctor - and the hemoglobin is also higher- even more puzzling to the MD. Alkaline phosphatase is higher than it should be - which according to Dr. Weber indicates one of two things: A - cancer has further metastacized, or B - the liver is having isues. He expressed confusion about possible spread because of the significant drop in PSA.
Of course I am questioning the doctor.... and said it could very well be the liver, correct? He agreed. I also asked - "couldn't the higher number be a side effect of the Oxycontin and Oxycodeine Jesse was taking for pain?"  He was a bit taken aack, but after a couple of "well, well", he said, "yes you are right, it could be." (I was taking Abby to her concert when he called and was desperate to take notes of the conversation - and quickly gave Abby my tablet in the car and had her put it on video so I could get the audio to playback.

So this is our numbers update.  A new HCG test was mailed out on Monday. Jesse is off the Rx narcotics and his body is detoxing nicely. I am learning a lot from Mike Witort about the symptoms of a body coming off narcotics. We have other means of helping to manage his pain - which does make him sleep a lot.  His family and other visitors have noticed his strength improving.
Putting a few new messages on our entry door (whcih is by the garage for anyone who comes to volunteer or visit - front door doesn't work). We are not accepting condolences. Jesse plans to get out of this bed, and God gave Abby a vision in her dreams Weds. night that her dad was up and getting spices out of the cupboard and working in his wood shop. From many people I have talked to - the terminally ill KNOW when they are dying - God lets them know it is time to get affairs in order.
Point of this sign - we appreciate prayers and visits - but ask that your thoughts not be mournful but lifted in celebration and gratitude for the AUTHORITY God has over sickness and evil. One new message reads:
LIVING. (emphasis on living)
Therefore, we celebrate each day in
gratitude for the healing that IS taking place.

Our doorway seems to be revolving with Agrace coming in to help, family and friends volunteering to sit with Jesse so I can leave for a couple of hours to work my business or do errands. I got pretty tired as I typed this so hope it makes sense.