Saturday, September 6, 2014

Frick and Frack... that's what her husband calls us

Sheila and I have been friends for 45 years. We met in Alaska as soldier's wives. We baked bread together, and we walked narrow wooded paths with our arms folded over our distended abdomens, and we wondered aloud if we were going to have a boy or a  girl. We both had girls.

We have continued our friendship through letters, phone calls, visits, and shared vacations. When brain cancer robbed her of her ability to think clearly, and dementia set in a few years ago, I continued to send her a letter a week. As long as there are Forever stamps we will be forever friends. She loves receiving mail from me, especially if it's about my students and class activities.



I cannot explain how I know things, but I had a sense of foreboding, doom and gloom, something bad about to happen. I asked Bill as we were driving if he felt it. He said, "With the world situation, it's a matter of time."

"No, it's closer. This bad feeling is close and will affect us, me."

 The phone call came. Sheila's husband said she fell and is at Mass General with a broken elbow, and will have to wait till morning for a specialist surgeon. The elbow has to be wired.

She had a skin cancer removed from her face recently. The bad news: it is a rare tumor directly related to colon cancer. They scheduled her for a colonoscopy in a few weeks. Her daughter and I agree, WHY? Why put her through it? She fought the good fight 25 years ago when she was first diagnosed with brain cancer. Her quality of life has steadily declined and she is more confused than ever, weak and sleeps a lot.

I believe in the sanctity of life, but not of keeping a body from doing what is natural. It is harder to let go than to hang on. Her family is in pain and my heart is breaking, too. Prayers appreciated for my dear friend and her husband and children.

12 comments:

Sioux said...

Linda--You are so right. It is kinder--most times--to surrender and let go than fight a losing battle and hold on.

I hope your friend's family makes the right decision for her.

Daisy said...

I'm so sorry to hear this, Linda. Prayers here for your friend, her family, and for you.

Mevely317 said...

What an awful dilemma!
... I'm so sorry, Linda. Sending prayers and peace to your friend and all those who love her.

Bookie said...

You have been a good friend, standing by with much needed letters. I am sorry you have to face this as it will hurt you as much as your friend, maybe more. Been there lately and I know. No matter how many times we go through this situation it never gets easier. We have the options to see out our pups but not our pals with compassion and less pain. I know we are on heady ground when we start determining when to let someone go but we have already redefined that line when we began to keep people alive by strong means. It is a moral mess. Keep strong yourself.

Susan said...

Awwwww, poor Sheila. I trust the Lord to hold her close to His heart (and you, too, Linda.) Susan p.s. Thanks for your visits.

Kathy's Klothesline said...

So sorry to hear this, losing a friend is like losing family. I am facing the same thing with my dad and just how much he should go through. Cancer is a demon!

Tammy said...

I think your sixth sense shows that our hearts are far more powerful than our brains yet grasp. Prayers for your friend and her family, Linda, and you too.

Val said...

So sorry to hear about your pal. She has been blessed with a fantastic friend.

Optimistic Existentialist said...

So truly sorry to hear this about your Sheila. My thoughts and prayers are with her and her family.

Lisa Claro said...

I type medical transcription (a lot of oncology) and see this dilemma play out over and over again. There are no easy answers. My heart breaks for the families faced with these circumstances. Prayers for your friend and her family, and for you. You're doing all you can do, just by being her friend.

Susan Sundwall said...

Said prayers for sheila on Sunday. Let us know how this ends. Hugs.

Mary Horner said...

Prayers for you and your friend, Sheila.