Sunday, May 31, 2009

The start of many Thank You's.

Today was Jerry's memorial. It was more beautiful that we could have imagined. There was a house full of family & friends, some that were even a surprise. Many hugs & lots of love- friends old & new. My family was incredibly blessed. I'm going to start thank you cards soon, but we want to thank everyone here too:

The Botros family for bringing so much food, you are very generous. The Pete McGowan Family & Joe Michael families for letting us borrow your EZ Ups. Esther C. for being a HUGE support to our family. Patty of Creative Touch linens for letting us borrow your linens. Jesse Macleod for singing for us last minute, you wowed everyone. Kenna, Michelle, Kolleen, Liz, Rena, Robyn, & Kathy for bringing amazing food. Loretta, Staci, & Yvette, for being complete & total servants of love to my family. You ran the whole show. The Rippee Family for being so overly generous all the time. Becca Jarrett for the beautiful collage & just being here. I'm so happy to know you & Jason. Ryann for taking care of my girls the entire day so that we could concentrate on the service & visiting family, thank you for loving on them. Anita for food, cleaning, and delivering items back to their destination. Last to Lisa, all I can say is "everything" that is what you mean to this family. There just aren't enough words for every way you have supported us.

Through all of you you, my mom has been so blessed and was able to see truly what God's love is all about! I know that will all the prayers and support pouring into her, she will be okay.

My last posting on Jerry's blog will be in the next few days as I'm going to post some photos & maybe even a slideshow.

Thursday, May 28, 2009

Please join us for Jerry's Memorial Service
1pm
Sunday, May 31st
3163 Banton Circle
Corona, CA 92882
951-738-9412
or
951-737-8309
or
Loraynekay@aol.com
Please let me know if you'd like exact directions.
All friends & family invited. Kids are welcome!
Please let us know if you'll be able to join us to celebrate his life!

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Services for Jerry

Just wanted to let friends & family know that we'll be having services for Jerry early Sunday afternoon. Pastor JT's schedule is pretty tight this last minute so we are feeling blessed that he has any times available. Please put it on your calendar & let us know if you think you can make it. Exact location & time will be figured out tomorrow early afternoon.

Thank you to all the calls, emails, & facebook posts! We've been overwhelmed with all the prayers & thoughts. My mom is feeling so loved right now.

Jerry's passing

The dreaded phone call just came in from Lorayne's mom that Jerry just passed away about 4:45 this morning. Needless to say her Mom is a mess, but Lorayne is already on the way to the hospital to console and help her.

I saw Jerry last night around 7:30; I could tell he was not doing well.

May he Rest in Peace now that his body has been rid of the pain that overtook him so quickly.

Say a prayer for the rest of the family, especially Grandma as it will be extremely hard on her as she was in the hospital room when it happened.

Tuesday, May 26, 2009

Tonight

My mom called about an hour ago and said she was told by both of Jerry's doctors & the hospice worker that came by that they do not expect Jerry to live through the night. He breathing has become less frequent; they've now put a full face mask on him to help him take in air. He did not "come to" today as my mom & the doctors had hoped. My nephews are on their way, as is his son, Bill should be there about now. I'm hoping to get over there and spend the later 1/2 of the night there. Will keep this blog posted as I can.

Today's visit


I took my mom to visit first thing this morning & right after we walked in, the doctor came in. Jerry was peacefully sleeping from the morphine. Since Jerry was so peaceful I decided to head back to Corona & take the girls out of school to come visit and say their goodbyes. I've been waiting for a time but he has been changing so quickly you never know what condition he'll be in each visit. The girls were able to draw him pictures in the car and spend some time with him. I think Isabella knew exactly what was going on but Sophia being so little had no idea.

This is what we know of his condition now: His kidneys are now in failure. The doctor was in to talk with us while we were there. His body is now shutting down and they are figuring out where & when to release him in the next few days. He will be off of all medications & be given morphine to keep him comfortable.

They were going to take him off a bit of the morphine this afternoon. My mom was hoping to get him "back" for just enough time to say hello to him, have him talk with her, and hug her. I pray that she at least gets that for a few minutes. She'll sit at the hospital today until he wakes up. Jerry's son, Jason & wife, Becca are also in town tonight to say goodbye to him too. We're hoping that family members will be able to get Jerry's mom here soon to say her goodbyes as well.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Tonight's sad update

My mom just called me nearly inconsolable. They made it in to see Jerry later this evening after a BBQ. She just couldn't beleive how bad he was. He was moaning very loudly. His eyes were rolling back into his head. He couldn't speak to her. The nurse told her that he is in a lot of pain right now. The nurses had given him some heavy duty pain medication. Today is now day two of his not eating any food. My mom said that she overheard the nurses talking about that he had a DNR order in place. She thought that hearing that couldn't be good. I'm planning on taking her to the hosptial tomorrow as soon I drop the girls off at school to check in on him. My mom is so very sad. This all happened so fast, there was so much she didn't get to say or do. Please pray that his suffering he is going through ends quickly.

Update after Memorial Day weekend

We had a garage sale this past Saturday and thanks to donations from my very generous friends, we made $320 to go towards expenses for Jerry!! Yeah! So awesome!

I'm still waiting on tonight's update but as of this morning Jerry had a very bad night last night. So much that he had to be restrained to the bed (arms & legs) to keep himself in the bed and to keep himself from injuring himself. This morning the doctor gave him a heavy sleeping pill and the doctors were hopeful to be able to finally give him the MRI that they've been wanting. This MRI will be able to tell them so much about what exactly is going on and how much time he has left. They are planning on keeping him in the hospital throughout the week. By the end of this week we should know if he will be going home on hospice or checking into a nursing facitility. They are hoping to spend more time "managing" his medications in hopes that it calms some of his delusions and in hopes that it brings Jerry "back" a little more often. Right now, he just wants to go home.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Arranging Hospice & final arrangments

Today my mom was told that they will be moving forward with arranging hospice care at home for the remainder of his life, the days remaining are anyone's guess. My mom will need a few days to arrange for space for the bed and the rearranging of Jerry's bedroom. I'm going to figure he could be coming home early next week.

Per my mom's request, I've contacted the local cemetary, Corona Sunny Slope, where we are going to start going forward with "pre-need" accomodations. My mom just cannot stomach having his remains put in Ridgecrest so far away. His wishes are to be creamated but we would like a small memorial here at the cemetary so my mom & my girls have some place to visit & place flowers. Unfortunately, cemetaries run a little different than in Ridgecrest where I buried my dad nearly 6 years ago, I didn't have to pay until I received life insurance monies. Here they are requiring at least 20% down but we will be given a discount for going forward with the planning "pre-need". We will need at least $1,400 to have Jerry buried. As a sign of the times, Bill and I no longer have any extra accounts we can pull from to pay for this as well as deductibles from last weeks accident. I'm just not sure how much my mom has in savings. I've been asked by numerous people if there was an account set up to help my mom however she might need. I have now set one up. There is a company called Chip-in. This is linked directly to a paypal account. If you are not familiar with paypal, it is a completely safe way to send money over the internet & you do not have to have a paypal account. Instead of flowers or meals, she could use the extra cash. If you are available to help a little, please do. There is a link at the top of the page. I will keep you posted. Contact me anytime at 951-738-9412. Please keep praying!!

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

The good change is gone

I just talked to my mom & the progress that Jerry had made the past two days has disappeared. He's nearly as confused and ill as he was when he was admitted to the hospital last week. The nurse told my mom that it is typical for these patience to kind-of in & out. There was even an MRI scheduled for today as they expected today to be day 3 of improvement, but because of his current state of mind, it needed to be cancelled. My mom is very surprised and very beside herself because she was really counting on his improvement. Each day will bring something new. She has no idea who or what Jerry will be like when they go into visit him tomorrow.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Happy news to report

Today is day two of Jerry's improvement. He's now able to answer his phone & take calls. He is knowing really well who everyone is and has been able to carry a conversation. He is still hallucinating and his mind still wanders around the place, but definately a change. My mom's greatest hopes are that the hospital is going to be able to make him stable enough to send him home. He's now been there a week. She is also hoping he is going to be improving each day so that he will get to the point where he can remain calm & still enough to move forward with MRI of his brain. My mom's sister Phyllis is still here visiting & hopefully will remain here until Jerry is sent home & help is offered to care for him from the hospital.

Saturday, May 16, 2009

We won't know if the cancer has gone to his brain

Steve, my mom, & Bill went to visit Jerry today and the nurses told them that today was the best day he's had yet. He was able to keep focused and have a small conversation. He still easily lost focus and went back to seeing things and people that were not there. His memory only lasts a short time befor e resetting itself it seems.

The doctor has decided that an MRI will not be possible. Jerry will be unable to stay still & they will be unable to put him under out of fear that he will not wake up. It will now be everyone's guessing game if the cancer has gone to his brain. That could mean Jerry could be here weeks or months. Once he is stablized, they will arrange to send him home with plenty of help for my mom. All plans for Chemo & Radiation have been stopped. When and if he is ready, he will go home & be made comfortable.

Friday, May 15, 2009

Today's update



Jerry was moved to the "Heart" unit at the hospital. He's in room 1505. Kaiser is working on getting Jerry a social Case Manager to help manage his care. Jerry's closest friend Steve made it in town today- big support for my mom. He'll be here for a few days. My mom says that Jerry had a very rough day, she came home very upset and tearful. He seems to be declining every day.We had been on the fence about bringing the girls to see their Grandpa one last time but my mom decided that with the way he was today, bringing the girls would not be a good idea. He didn't even recognize my mom 1/2 of the day. The doctors tried giving him an MRI but gave him a sedative trying to get him calm enough to take the photos. I think they are going to try & knock him out tomorrow to have the MRI done. Tomorrow Jerry's son will be coming into town, my nephews will be into visit, and my mom's sister Phyllis is driving in from Texas. Tomorrow is a new day! Please pray!! (The photo above was taken on Mother's day just the day before he was hospitalized)

Thursday, May 14, 2009

A Car accident.

This morning on the way to the hospital to visit Jerry my mom was in a car accident. She called me at about 8:30 and she was sitting in the emergency room of the same hospital that Jerry is in. She is okay, only minor facial damage from the airbags but is very upset. She totalled the car and it was towed away. She's on her way home and is now faced with dealing with not having a car to get back and forth to see Jerry every day at the hospital, yet alone every day transportation. Bill and I leased that car for her and are not in a situation where we can replace it. So we are praying for a BIG miracle. We are praying that we are able to come up with some creative thinking to be able to get her a car, as I just don't know how possible it's going to be for me to drive her everywhere she needs to go.

After the ER released her, she was able to go up and visit Jerry. There is no change. The doctor told her that, the cancer he has tends to make it to his brain quickly. There are no current plans on him being released and they will take it day by day. The outlook does not look good for him.

I was there all day cleaning her house from top to bottom, went grocery shopping for her, and had dinner waiting for her tonight. Please pray that I have "super human strenght" to take care of her & still run my house & take care of my 3 kiddos. Pray for my mom. Pray that Jerry doesn't suffer much longer.

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Latest as of today

Just realized I didn't post so thought I'd put the last of what I've heard. I was able to visit today, though I don't think Jerry would remember. My mom was sleeping so I let her sleep since she did not sleep the night before after spending 12 HOURS in the ER before they could get him a room.
My mom called around 7pm tonight. She decided to head home for the night needing some good rest. The dr's really upp'd the medication they were giving Jerry for his irregular heartbeat and seemed to get his heart to even out. They are still unable to explain his delusions. He's still seeing things, really doesn't know what's going on, can't walk or feed himself.

My mom was actually told by a Dr. today that they may or may not go forward with the MRI after seeing a "small spot" on his PET scan. She was told that, "Well, even if it is cancer in the brain, we will still be going forward with the same treatment." as if it doesn't matter if the cancer has moved to his brain. I'm urging her to press forward for the MRI and NOT to settle for what the Dr. says. She is also saying they will still be pressing forward with the chemo & radiation in hopes of remission. I know it is really hard for her to understand what it is that is going on right now. I think her head knows but her heart cannot accept it.

Right now, the big concern is that if they are going to send him home in the next few days, with his current conditions, my mom CANNOT care for him on her own. There is no way. So, we're just praying for answers. He's at Kaiser Hospital in Fontana. Room 2101.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Just came back from a night at the hospital

Yesterday evening Jerry took a sudden turn for the worst. Mentally & Physically he went downhill. Finally early afternoon today they got the "ok" from his Dr. to get him into the hospital. When I spoke with my mom around 6pm, Jerry was just "gone"- not sure where he was, what year it was, or even who the President of the US is. He hadn't had anything to eat or drink in a day. He told my mom he thought he was allergic to water. I got to the hospital around 8pm and it was just as she said it was. He is very agitated. Won't lay still in his bed or sleep for more than around 1 minute I guess. He thinks he sees things. He is completely incoherent. He doesn't know where he is or what is going on around him. He imagines hot dogs, corn on the cob, and things. As I was leaving they were going to give him a shot of Morphine to calm him as he kept trying to rip the monitors off and get out of bed every 2-3 minutes until my mom was able to remind him of where he was. They've now been sitting in a small room in the emergency room waiting to see another doctor and waiting for a bed to be available within the hospital (got to love Kaiser) My mom is beyond exhausted since Jerry hasn't been sleeping the past week, neither has she. I'm going to call her first thing in the morning and see what is new. I think she is preparing herself for the worst. I will update just as soon as I know something.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Doctor's appointment today

Today was chemo & radiation today. They got the bloodwork back that was taken yesterday and turns out Jerry is low on basically every type of bloodcell in your body, so they were unable to give him chemo again. He will be going to the hospital for a 4 hour transfusion tomorrow before radiation which the doctors are hoping will help get all of his blood cells back up to where they should be. He is also now down to 119 lbs which is concerning to everyone since it is a 5 lb loss in less than a week. With the help of a "caseworker" at Kaiser, they are pressing for an MRI to be done of his brain. No one can answer why he is having so many hallucinations.

Jerry again took a fall today after bumping into a table and has major bruising on his chest, arms, and underneath his chin. It's hard getting an independent man to wait on assistance with every step he takes. Luckily no broken bones. The doctors are are still trying to heal a wound on his arm from a previous fall. They are just having to pack & protect it since his skin is too thin & fragile to stich.

On the positive, Jerry received a call from someone he loves very much in Arizona. It looks as if he is going to be able to come visit with him next week. My mom & Jerry are thrilled. Jerry has also requested brownies. I just put the kiddos to bed.. so I'm going to see if I can get some made- that will make him smile.

Not a very good report to give

I just got back from visiting my mom & Jerry. Since Jerry was up (every time I've come over he is in bed) I wanted him to be able to see the girls for a little bit. Things have changed a lot since I last saw him. Physically he still looks the same (very sick) but mentally, he has deteriorated to the point where it's almost as if he is suffering from alzheimers. He couldn't even carry a conversation with my 3 year old. I talk with my mom every evening about how the day went and she has been telling me just how quickly he's gone down hill since starting the every day radiation, but now I was able to see first hand just how bad he has become. Jerry doesn't really remember much that goes on in a day, he's having panic attacks, when he does get a small period of sleep from not coughing, he thinks someone is trying to kill him or he won't wake up at all. His delusions have become an every day thing; conversations he's not having or people that aren't really there. He just isn't "there" anymore.

As far as physically, he's still at 124 pounds where he has been for about two weeks, which is suprising since my mom says he really won't eat. He cannot move around on his own and is totally dependent on my mom to get him around. He got up two days ago without my mom and fell down the small stairs outside their home (thankfully he is okay, only a little bruised.

At this point, Jerry still wants to keep pushing forward with the Chemo & radiation that is clearly killing him. He wants to feel as if he can still beat this when at this point, it is looking bleek. My mom & the doctors are allowing him to keep going. He is only 6 treatments into his 30 before they will even CT scan him again to see if the radiation is even shrinking the tumors. I think very soon though a decision will be made to stop all treatments, maybe as soon as the next several weeks.

If you are a family member or close old friend, please make arrangements to come visit as soon as you can. Please email me directly at Loraynekay@aol.com or call me at 951-738-9412 if you have any questions.