A Minute, An Hour

It seems like all I seem to be able to write about lately is Al. I am sorry I have not put more interesting topics in. I try to think of stuff to write that will interest you but I always come back to Al.

Today he has been weepy. At times he seems confused whether it is day or night and what time it is.

His clothes are laid out by the care giver for tomorrow but it is a surprise that he has shown no enthusiasm towards going. I know in my heart that if I asked him if he still wants to go, his answer will be yes.

He has been a real trooper over these past several months. He is definitely a fighter. Trudging through feelings and pain in order to keep up as good as he can with the routine that he used to have.

Yesterday and last night he couldn’t tell me enough times that he loved me. For my entire life I never heard those words. Now they are a common name in our household.

Today he was telling the care giver that he loved her too. The minister came to visit him and after he left Al fell into a very peaceful sleep.

I was instructed by the Hospice nurse to quit giving him meat from now on. Maybe a treat of some soft meat but most of the time none. I was told to start giving him mashed potatoes, puddings, pancakes, anything soft and easy to swallow. I was also told to quit fixing him regular meals and ask Al what he wanted to eat. If he wanted dessert for breakfast, then give it to him. So I guess at this point we will toss out the window a lot of rules we were taught by our parents.

I was explained without being forth right that Al probably doesn’t have much time left. Maybe he will be here at New Years. I didn’t flinch when I heard it. I suppose I already knew deep inside.

Tonight Al is saying please and thank-you for everything I do for him. I am letting him do it but Lord knows he doesn’t need to thank me for a single thing. It is an honor to be the one caring for him. I am the one getting the gift of memories.


Summer breeze

Fills the air

Fall frost

Found every where                                                                                 snow flower

Winter blows

Snow falls

Twinkling stars

To Al they call

Spring does come

And brings new life

A soul is lifted

With no strife

And when I look

Up to the stars

I have no need to ask

Of where you are

For the seasons come

And seasons go

Life is given

And then we know

That our time on earth

Will one day end

So make every day count

Do all you can.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd



I don’t know the season of when Al will be made new. But I do know that making every moment count. Whether it is drying his tears, or holding his hand. Listening to him tell me he loves me over and over. All of these things Al shows me what is important to him. He tells me that he doesn’t know any longer if he will be here in the next hour. I give him a hug and let him know that whether it is a minute or an hour, it has been a privilege to be his sister.


24 thoughts on “A Minute, An Hour

  1. Terry we all know that Al and his care is THE most important on your mind right now and later it will be your grief, so don’t worry that you have not posted a cheery upbeat post, we understand and would think you were not human or at least compassionate if it was any either way! I am glad the minister was able to bring a calming influence to Al and as for asking if he wants to go tomorrow, don’t ask he will be fine, he doesn’t need to be out in the cold anyway does he and this gives you more time with him…just my opinion and what I would want to do, keep him close for the next minute or hour or day!


  2. You are so poetic. He is lucky to have a sister like you. Right now I’m alone and sometimes I wonder what would happen if I got sick. God bless you both.


  3. Sweetie you need to write about Ali, his care and how you are coping. We are all here to listen and understand.
    I think they have Al eating no meat due to how hard it is to chew it up and digest it. It is very easy to choke on meat, and I understand that.
    My hubby is only allowed to have a small amount a week due to the choking and indigestion it causes him.
    Sending prayers and good vibes to you and Al and gentle hugs.


  4. No need to apologize about your posts. You write about Al & keep writing about him all that you want. In this short amount of time that we’ve met – I grew attached to the both of you & hold you both in my prayers. I love how you share some of the struggles & worries. I think & hope that it helps you relieve a little bit of stress – at least. I love how you lean on us for support & am happy to be here for you & Al. I enjoy hearing about your times together. I especially love when you share the simple things that make you both happy. I love that he has told you that he loves you. I love that he’s got the best sis that he could ever ask for. I love the recent post that an angel came to visit him. 😉
    {Hugs} to you & Al


    • Thank you so much. You are a big support and wonderful friend. How did I get so fortunate to have the best friends……………….Big hugs my friend. I treasure your comment


  5. Your writing is so beautiful. I so appreciate having this glimpse into your life in these final days with Al. It is very inspirational and will help each one of us who still have this portion of the journey ahead of us.
    May God bless you with his goodness and mercy.
    Your friend forever, Linda


  6. Treasure those moments of hugs and “I love you’s” They will be the best and most comforting memories. You deserve it all as you are the best sister he can have and he wants to let you know. Be strong and be there for him as you always are. Love you and pray for you both!


  7. You are indeed a wonderful sister and caregiver. I know how tough it is to be going through rough times during the holiday season. You really are an inspiration for other family caregivers. You don’t sugarcoat things, but you also discuss the rewarding moments of caregiving.


  8. I am thankful we can all be here for you and “listen” to you as your write what is in your heart. Do what you need to we are all here for you. {{hugs}}


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