Al’s Requests


Hi my friends. Today was a little different from other days. Al woke up after a restless night. He seemed alright but soon after broke into an ocean of tears. This went on for over two hours. He was asking for forgiveness, I don’t know why. He was naming off relatives, phone numbers, old jobs.

It was like he was revisiting a movie of his own life. He sobbed harder than I have ever seen him. It scared me, I couldn’t help it. I had never seen him like this before. I called the minister from Hospice and he paid a visit.

Whenever this minister, Bob, comes Al calms down, and once again this happened. Ever since the minister left Al seems to have accepted his own death nearing. I was told that Al is in the process of dying, what ever that means.

Al asked for different  people. He started off by asking for my son, who came to see him. The two relatives in our lives that although I have forgiven, still make me very sensitive when I hear their names.

But Al was adamant about speaking to them. I finally gave in for Al’s peace of mind. I located the phone number in Florida and will make that phone call in the morning. The other relative I called tonight and Al was able to speak to her over the phone. The aunt is also paying a visit to Al within the next two days.

Al cried like a baby upon hearing her voice. After the phone call ended he told me that this was his last request. I feel it is nearing, a gut feeling I have. Changes have happened. Al’s tremors have ended.

His eye lids no longer work. The MSA has taken the eye lid muscle and weakened it. He can open them in the mornings but by afternoon he can no longer do this. He has told me how much he loves me and Rhino.

He has made many comments about how I will be after he is gone and I have answered him as honestly as I can, letting him know I will be alright. It is as if he is saying goodbye. His breathing has changed. He struggles and his swallowing has been effected. I can see that he is struggling to swallow anything.

I pray with all my heart that he is taken soon. My heart will break into pieces. I will miss him terribly, but he will be out of pain. He keeps telling me his arms are glued down, but the truth is, the brain is not telling the arms to move so they seemed locked along with his body contracting.

The only person he has been asking for is our half-sister. Although I have pleaded with her to come see him, I can not make her do it. I had to tell Al that I am so sorry but I just can’t make this request happen.

I told Al he is the best brother I could have ever asked for and I told him how proud I am for all he has done in his life. I thanked him for being my good friend and for going to all the auctions and flea markets and out to eat.

He held my hand and began struggling with breathing again. I quit talking as I didn’t want to get him upset. Al has never been able to accept that he is a good man, but I had to tell him. I sat with him until he finally drifted off to sleep.

Tomorrow I have foods to make and I have ignored the house so much. The Hospice nurse will be here also and my one daughter-in-law will be stopping by. Christmas Day my son and his family will be here for the noon meal and our Aunt will be paying Al a visit. Thursday my daughter will be arriving sometime in the day and the caregiver will once again return.

I miss Stacy already. She is a big help to me and to Al, but she deserves off her holiday also. So I will be busy, too busy for my taste. Al is the priority, the foods and holiday will work around him. I will do my best to touch base tomorrow night. Hugs to all of you.

63 thoughts on “Al’s Requests

  1. Dear Terry, Christmas hugs coming your way. You have made my holiday by sharing your journey. You are an inspiration giving me the courage to say no matter what comes my way God will bring me through like he is walking beside Terry and bringing her through. Forget about the house and the meals…if they don’t like it they can help clean and if they are hungry they can cook their own food. Sounds harsh but you need to take care of yourself…not everyone else. If you “bust your butt” they will not recognize or appreciate it. Relax, enjoy the music, the company and the coming of Peace in your house. Mega hugs and prayers for you, Linda

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  2. God bless you Terry. Al is making his peace with God, and I am so encouraged for him and for you. When a man is repenting and seeking forgiveness, it is a blessed and wonderful thing. Praise God for the work He is doing in Al, even in these last days and hours. I have to tell you, my friend, I’ve witnessed death, and Al, though he may have been learning disabled, is more of a man than many, many others that I have known. It takes a wonderful and humble man to admit that he has sinned and fallen short of God’s glory, and to seek forgiveness from those whom he has offended. I pray that when my time comes, yeah, even before that, I want to be quick to repent and ask forgiveness from those that I’ve harmed or offended. Hold tight to that memory Terry, for it just shows how very special your brother truly is.

    When my stepfather was on his deathbed, the one thing I LONGED to hear from him was that he was sorry for molesting me and hurting me. I had forgiven him long before, but he had never repented, and I LONGED to hear that, Terry, and just hours before his death. He looked at me expectantly, and I asked him what he wanted. “A kiss,” he said. Now, if you knew my dad, that was totally out of character for him, and for the first time in may years (because for obvious reasons, I never kissed him), I leaned forward and kissed him, giving him a physical sign of my forgiveness of him, and yet, the ONE thing that I longed for… “I’m sorry” or “I was wrong,” I never got from him, and though I loved him and forgave him, it hurt.

    Now, my dad was well-respected in the community, probably more so than Al ever was, but Terry, I say to you, my friend, that with all of his physical, mental and emotional problems, with all of the pain and rejection he’s suffered in his lifetime, here, in the end, when it really matters, Al has proven that he is so much more of a man than my dad ever was, and than many other well-respected men are. Thank you so much for sharing what a glorious man your brother truly is and was, Terry. God knows, and He loves him.

    Love you,
    Cheryl

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    • Oh Cheryl, thank you so much. Thank you for sharing a piece of your life with me. I can understand what and where you were coming from. Pain can run deep but I am so thankful that you have forgiven. You are the one who came out on top and God is smilng

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  3. Merry Christmas to you and Al. Although I do not often comment, I have been truly touched by your story. You show such strength in being able to share it with us. May God bless you, you have a heart of gold which is far too rare these days. Stay strong and enjoy the holiday season as best you can.

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  4. Terry,
    Tomorrow will be one year since my sweet sister Amy found peace from this awful disease. In a way it was the best Christmas gift we got because it meant she was no longer suffering. You are in my thoughts and prayers.

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  5. What a wonderful thing Al has done, asking forgiveness ! That is such a reassurance that his heart is right with the Lord. I know my mother asked for certain family members the day she passes, I just told her they were on their way and that seemed to satisfy here. What a blessing that you were able to call Pastor Bob to help Al, that is another sign that Al’s heart is with the Lord. Terry I wish for you a blessed Christmas enjoy the people that come to you over the next few days, hopefully they will be there for you after Al transistions to his heavenly home. Have a beautiful day my friend.

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  6. As always, prayers for peace, strength and even joy in the midst of hardship. How good that Al were able to ask for the help you have given him to contact those people. What at blessing that he were able to think about that, and have courage to do it. So many of the so called wise among us postpone until it is to late to ask for forgiveness and to share love. I know that God is smiling in joy over the love you two are showing each other and the world now, and also the love you are showing the Lord by caring for your brother, I also know God at the same time is crying over the way Al has had to suffer, over how this is the condition of human life, that he came to redeem us from.May the Christmas you thought you would not have together be a blessing to you after all! love, Solveig

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  7. Terry Terry Terry ~my heart breaks with yours; my eyes cry with you and, my soul relates with every word! Soon he’ll be released, restored to his Heavenly Father’s presence never to depart from his peace and loving embrace ~ Bear up your last steps to glory beside your angel brother ! I’ve been praying unceasingly ~ I love you so!

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    • Al has refused food now two days in a row. He does sip water. He has laid in the same position all day. He doesn’t want turned. He has wet three times today. Yet, there is a calm in him, as if angels are holding his hand

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  8. I pray that God has made it a very special, peaceful and joyous Christmas for you. Both you and Al need to know that you are good people and God dearly loves you! What great love you have shown toward your brother! You have been so faithful at extending the love of God to himl.
    …always praying for you.

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    • I am 59 years old.About three and a half years ago .i started to feelrun down.I always worked hard 7 days a week every week.Iwas slowing down and finding it difficult to do normal things and having severe pain in my back.I woke up in the early hours ,csreaming in agony ,and icould not move my legs.It turned out after undergoing multiple and various scans that all but one pair of discs in my spine,save one had ruptured or collapsed and cut or damaged all the nerves in my spine and that ihad lumber and cervical spinal stenosis .I also had severe arthritis through my spine and legs.Two consultants met with myself and wife and told me that they could to an extent repair my spine with nuts and bolts etc but they could not say whether i would be ok again or not and they wanted me to see a nuerologist because i had tremors in my right hand and leg and severe pain they thought there was something wrong further up in my head. I did everything they asked scan and examination wise I then met the nuerologist who told me i had probable MSA.He then explained that there was no treatment and no cure . After this i was given a huge amount of drugs to take which only help to releive some of the symptoms.I was told that i would get worse and worse and probably die in 7 to 9 years as i would not be able to walk breathe swallow use my hands go to the toilet by myself or anything else. All this was 3 years ago .Already i cannot walk ,im in a wheelchair,my hands are capable of 50 percent use and my speach is affected.Ihave sworn that i will fight this thing all the way and never give in . through all this my wife has been amazing.Caring for me like an angel, nothing has been to much. She nursed me through the deppression the awful moods the realisation that everything was coming to an end.My wife has very little sleep and watches me all the time.The hardest thing is listening to her cry when she thinks i cant hear her.The look in her and my childrens eyes that they are so hurt that there is nothing they can do to stop me fading away.Terry i feel for you so much ,because my wife does it for me like you do for al.You should feel very proud of the way youve stuck by al and looked after him and loved him like you do and always will even after hes gone.Be sure that he loves you back through all the pain and suffering believe me i know.I have made my peace and am not afraid of whats coming, so be strong for him terry try to do your crying when hes not suffering anymore youre not alone there are other people suffering like you and be sure in youre heart al loves you and will always be watching over you.

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      • You are a lucky man to have a loving wife and children. It is hard for the caregiver to watch what is happening to their loved ones, and the feeling of helplessness is huge. I only hope that Al finds peace with a new body very soon. His suffering has been big. God bless you and thank you for sharing with me. Keep in touch please

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