Pain & Friendship

Pain & Friendship

There are moments we feel alone

And the world is standing still

Everyone is moving

Against our very will.


When pain comes and hits us

We want others to feel it too

We think no one understands it

But we know some really do.


And through the moments we’re frozen

And our heart has swelled in pain

That one person out there

Will stand with you through rain.


Slowly our heart will melt

And the pain will fade a way

But when it again attacks us

That friend will walk with you that day.

Written by,

Terry Shepherd





lights 5 2014


Win-Win Situation For Al

Today it seemed like a chilly Spring day. The temperatures were in the thirties. A much higher temp than thirty-five below zero. I went outside our front door. It felt good to get out.

I drove to Wal-Mart to get Al a new baby monitor. One of those that you can carry with you. With his new air bed motor being noisy  and the fact the caregiver has hearing issues, I felt like I was a big, old nag continually letting her know Al was calling her name.

She didn’t mind me telling her, but I minded it and with Al’s bitter soft voice, I admit he is very hard to hear. I got Al a new box of ice-cream and some popsicles. The nurse thought the treat would feel good on his lips.

I couldn’t get the ice-cream without the chocolate syrup of course. That is the way he likes it. For several days this has been all Al will eat. He eats very little but at least he will eat that. Along with some other groceries I wanted to look around for clearance items too, but started feeling a little ill.

I tried hard to fight it but it continued to get worse so I stopped at the Sub-Way inside the store and picked up two sandwiches, one for the caregiver and of course me. Both Chicken, Bacon Ranch on flat bread. I like to do nice things for Stacy if I can, because she is so caring and good with Al.

Once I got back into my car to leave for home I instantly felt better. I knew then that it was me that was causing the ill feelings. I was out of my comfort zone. I was in a place where many people were and I was uncomfortable.

I started the car and waiting for it to warm up again, I questioned myself on how long I had actually been in the house. I couldn’t remember. I knew that I went down to the grocery store before the blizzard and got some emergency foods so I didn’t run out. I also remembered going to the big grocery store the week before Christmas.

Other than that the bad weather and Al’s health have  held me inside our home. I can’t let myself become a hermit. I can’t believe I didn’t really enjoy being out and on top of that almost made myself sick.

All the time I was out I thought of Al and hoped he was alright. I checked my cell a couple of times to see if Stacy had called, needing me. Being a caregiver involves so much more than just the physical care of a patient. I believe it takes hold of every fiber of our being when it is a full-time job.

I made up my mind that when I can, I will get out for a bit. I can’t control the weather, and I can’t fix how light-weight my car is, but I can get outside for a breath of fresh air more often. I need to push myself harder and realize I am not the one who is lying in the bed sick. I have two feet that work and I do not have to be glued to the four walls.

I will be glad when Spring is here and I can get back outside again. Maybe sit in the swing, or watch the birds. If Al is still here, I can carry the portable monitor with me or just hand it to the caregiver and let her be doing the job she was hired for.

Al loves his new air bed and this is nice. But I think with having to get him out of bed yesterday for the transfer of beds was hard on him. His vitals have changed and haven’t returned back to his normal. He has slept around the clock since yesterday, only waking up to eat some ice-cream. I am thinking part of it is the comfy bed and part of it is the illness. I have been told by many that in the ending days Al will sleep almost all the time. Either way, God is in control.

So many have been praying for Al’s release of this body into a new heavenly body. Maybe God used that new mattress as a way to speed up the process, and maybe not. All I know is Al is very calm, very peaceful, and sleeping 22 hours out of 24. If this is the way Al will enter into his new life, then it is a good thing, and if this is the way his body is going to react to the new bed, then that is also a good thing. Either way, it is a win-win situation for Al.

blue scene

The Caring Nurse

Hello my friends. I didn’t mean to ignore your posts today, but I did not read so many and I missed that. You all have something wonderful to say or an awesome photo to show me. Each of you are a part of my family and I feel like I lost touch today.

It is after midnight here and I am tired; but I couldn’t go to sleep without chatting with you. Today has been a busy day with a few changes. We started this morning off with Al’s two shower girls stopping by.

Al got his bed bath and clean bedding. For breakfast he still had the yearning for chocolate ice-cream with chocolate syrup; so his request was given. There was some free time  and Al took a nap. He usually falls asleep for an hour after his bath.

Then the Hospice nurse stopped by. I had not met this certain nurse, but I liked her caring attitude. She checked over Al. She couldn’t get all of his vitals as they were too soft to hear.

She saw his open areas and ordered a prescription for them. She noticed his swollen eyes and the constant drool and ordered medications for those issues too. By the end of the afternoon, all new medications had been dropped off here at the house.

She and the caregiver and I had chatted for sometime. Talk about the difficulties we were having of moving Al and injuring his skin. We chatted about his  urinating. By the end of her visit new changes had been put in place.

By five p.m. everything she had ordered had been delivered. Now I call that one fine nurse. She was firm, she made decisions with asking me first. I admired and respected her and wished that she would return more often.

With phone calls made in front of me I was informed of when people would arrive. I was told to let her know and she would return. About two hours later a company for home medical supplies arrived. The nurse was called and met them here.

The medical supply team brought in a hoyer lift. This is a special lift that with attachments raises Al out of bed.With the assistance of me, the nurse and the caregiver we were able to lift Al up and place him in his recliner.

His poor body just curled up in a ball from lack of strength. The caregiver stood by him and held his head so it wouldn’t fall forward or to the side.

The medical supply guy took the old mattress out and replaced it with an air mattress. A motor attached to the end of the bed, once turned on, filled the mattress with air. We placed Al back in bed. When we got him comfortable I asked him if this new bed felt better and I heard him clearly say yes. This made me very happy.

After we were satisfied everything was working properly the nurse and medical supply guy left. A couple of hours later, the nurse and another nurse showed up. They had with them more supplies to help Al stay comfortable.

They went to work and taught me and the caregiver about the Texas Catheter. This in place with no pain for Al, brought relief for him in so many ways. No more pulling and pushing to turn Al over to change briefs. No more bulky pads and wrinkled throw-a-way pads lying under him.

My hands that have electric shocks from my diabetes  sent through them from tugging and pulling when I turn him over have been relieved. Al is able to lay in  peace without being bothered so much. Al was finally comfortable.

Everything in place the nurse and other nurse left. The humming of the air mattress and the beautiful feel of the new mattress lulled Al into a sleep I have not seen in him for a long time.

He slept for three hours. I have not known him to do this in so long that I was actually checking on him more often to make sure he was alright.

Al is still refusing to eat most foods. When he does eat, he eats ice-cream. He still complains of his body being frozen. By this he is telling me he can’t move his body parts, but yet there was a peace within the room.

I relaxed some and just listened to the hum of the machine and thanked God for a wonderful Angel nurse that appeared this morning. Her professional attitude and caring concern went miles with Al and me today.

The evening went well. No unexpected surprises. Rhino, the cat is guarding Al’s room and I am sitting here smiling for a busy yet brand new day.

air mattress