'Emotional Etsy Rampage' is the Totally Name Of My New Emo Band
Over, Part Over

Limbo

I wish I knew what to say. I don't know if I have anything to say. Let's just...see where this goes.

Things are moving quickly, in the downhill direction. He's in a hospital bed in the living room, unable to breathe unless he stays perfectly still and immobile, utterly wiped out from the fight of the past six months. There is talk of moving to morphine soon. Everyone is scrambling to visit, exchanging helpless text messages about how much this sucks and...and...yeah.

How are you doing?

I don't know. You?

Same.  

Frowny emoticon.

Word.

I'm going up to see him on Friday, maybe even Thursday night. I don't know whether to go by myself or try to bring the boys one last time -- if this is, indeed, the one last time -- I don't know how to help, what to do, how to feel except bone-blisteringly, overwhelmingly sad. But it's a sad mixed with happy while I fold onesies and count kicks and kiss my children good-night, like an umbrella I keep forgetting to hold onto. 

Is it okay to change the subject? To talk about OB appointments and weight gain and belly shots? How is one supposed to deal with a timeline of birth and death or whichever comes first when it's not part of a montage in a movie, set to music, that skips all the moments in between where you sit on your bed and stare at the wall, thinking about how much this sucks, but also that wow, you really need to put some laundry away?

Because that's where I'm at. And I don't feel like folding shirts.

Photo (4)

Comments

Stacy

The first time my husband got married, they got pregnant right away, because his mom was terminal. She flew out to see her only grandchild, and ended up in the hospital the next day, where she died, a month later (on Thanksgiving day). My husband does not talk about her death, only her life. He was happy she got to see her first grandchild (she now has 2 more). It's okay to feel sad and happy at the same time. Your dad sounds like he is awesome and you will pass that on to all your children. Lots of hugs to you.

Swistle

This is hard. Harder to balance sad + happy than it is to deal with just sad alone.

Bettejo

Amy, like everyone else, I'm so very sorry. I would ask your mom what she thinks you should do about the kids. Could be it might be too hard for your dad. Love your babies, love your mom, love your husband, and love love love your dad

Stacy

When my grandfather was confined to his hospital bed the week he died from pancreatic cancer, my boys, 4 and 2 at the time, were being loud and rambunctious. My mother asked them to be quiet and my grandfather heard her. He "yelled" at her and told her that those kids could do whatever they damn well pleased. Every once in a while, they'd happily bounce into his room to say hi and hug his legs, completely unaware of what was happening. It was clear that their presence made him happy and comfortable. I think you should take your boys.

Mad mad hugs to you.

Jenny Joy

I'm certain I don't have just the right words to make it okay in any way at all. But, I'm sending hugs anyway. And love. And wishes that this just wasn't happening to you.

Haley

I'm so very sorry. Many prayers and lots of hugs.

Sarah

I think you just have to be real. And for right now, this is what it is - death and life and pregnancy and planning and good and bad and...whatever. My father-in-law died 6 weeks before my daugher (now 9 months) was born. And the two things are still totally, hopelessly entangled. It's okay.

Kara

Amy, I'm so sorry.

Can I offer a subject for change? Your ring is gorgeous. It looks like it has a story?

Lori McBride

(((((((((((((((((( h u g s ))))))))))))))))))

PopMommy Pam

I'm so sorry Amy. You always write so openly and honestly about everything in your life. You are an awesome lady and a wonderful daughter and mom. I am thinking about you and sending you prayers of strength and comfort. May God Bless you and your family and bring your Daddy peace.

Heidi

I lost my mom to cancer 51 weeks ago, the day before my son's birthday and two and a half weeks before my daughter's. She suffered so much the last 6 weeks, and as terrible as it is to say, I wish that her suffering had ended sooner. As terrible as it sounds, it comes from love and realizing that time isn't everything. Right now I should be getting ready to celebrate, but instead I'm mourning and feeling like a crappy mom. I cannot tell you how much I wish these dates could at least have their own week.

Knowing what I know now from my own experience doesn't help at all in your situation, and I'm blubbering. Sorry, I'm a creepy random stranger who has thought a lot about you -- I'm due with my third 6/2. It's always going to suck and we don't have any control, but I wish peace in whatever form it takes.

Brooke

I'm really sorry. Remember happy and sad aren't the same emotion. They rise and fall independently of one another. So... don't feel guilty about being happy and don't feel bad about being sad. You can be both simultaneously. It's what makes the human heart awesome and awful.

Cassie

I am just so very sorry.

My husband is battling a blood cancer and I know it's not the same but I just wanted to tell you that I frequently allow laundry to sit around, unfolded. Among other things. I get so frustrated sometimes when life keeps marching on when it really feels like it should stop for a minute.

My heart hurts for you and I wish you some peace during this time.

the mommy therapy

screw the shirt folding. sit and stare at the wall for a while if it makes you feel better, even for a few moments.
do whatever feels the least bad at the moment. enjoy the kicks and the onesies when you can, it is amazing, but so is the process of losing your dad. so amazingly difficult

these are all just pathetic suggestions to say I'm sorry. so very sorry.

Chrysalis

Ugh, cancer can eat a bag of dicks! I went through this with my dad last year and there are no words.
I'm sorry doesn't cover it, but I am. I'm sorry you and your family are going through this.

angie

I lost my beloved father-in-law just 5 weeks after my youngest son was born. That was 12 years ago and it still hurts. The pain isn't quite as sharp, but I'm not going to lie to you, it still hurts. I'm so, so sorry you have to experience this, and as a stranger-friend-lurker, I wish like crazy that you didn't. Deal with it in whatever way you want/need to, and to hell with what people think.

sharon

You do what you must, feel what you dread and somehow get through another day. Keeping your dad pain free is the focus now. Every thing else will follow as and when it does. Sadly there is nothing else to do but wait.

xox

erin

I am just...so sorry.

desertmom

I am sorry for what you and your family are going through.... You are in my thoughts and prayers....Take care

Page

Thinking of you, Amy. I'm so sorry.

Plano Mom

I'm praying for you to find some peace to the conflict going on. In the meantime, please make sure you try not to care about how you're going about this. There is no right or wrong way, only your way.

Erin

I'm usually a very quiet lurker of your page. But these past few days I've been tearing up for you. I've actually been avoidign your page b/c I'm scared to read what you are going through. What else is there to say? Sincerely sorry.

amy

Wow, you've like totally POPPED!!

I would take the boys, not just in case it's the last time, but before it gets to the point where you wouldn't want them to see him like that.

I think maybe you should ask your mom what she would like you to do, to help. I hate feeling helpless and so I ask What do you want me to do. Don't take "Nothing, I'm okay." for an answer, tell her even if it's doing her dishes/laundry or running errands. Ask her for something to do to make both of you feel better.

Folding shirts can definitely wait. ~hugs~

Virginia

No wisdom - just a ((((hug))))

Hang in there.

Anon

Again, I hope for his sake that it does go quickly. Suffering is awful. My father has been suffering for most of the past 3.5 years, since the first diagnosis of colorectal cancer, through the radiation, the chemo, now it is in the liver, now more surgery, now it is in the lungs...now a stroke...now home hospice, unable to walk or do anything for himself for the past five months. This is not life. This is slow dying. His mental anguish is off the charts; amazingly and fortunately, there is no physical pain.

Yesterday he took a turn for the worse. We've been going up every weekend, but now we are ready to go at a moment's notice. He has lost his appetite, he is very lethargic, can barely stay awake, can't open his eyes, didn't even know who Liz Taylor was when he saw the news yesterday. The nurse says his pulse, heart rate, respiration are unchanged, but I think it is now just a few days. I hope. He and my mother can't take any more of this. It needs to be over. I wake up every day, hoping for that phone call. Watching someone you love suffer, standing by helplessly ... we would never let our pets suffer like this.

Natalie

You're such a beautiful writer. And you're a good mother, daughter, and wife. I wish we could all be there to support you. Just know that your readers think of you often and are so very sorry you are going through this time. Give and take lots of hugs with your family.

Kim

I am so sorry for you and your family, Amy. My daughter had jus turned one when my mom died from stupid, fucking cancer. I can say with certainty that what helped me stay even remotely close to sane, and feel more connected to my mom, was my daughter. She was present with me almost every visit, which was more a matter of circumstance than an actual choice at the time, but ultimately it was good to have her there. My mom loved seeing her, and I felt like my daughter kept me from sliding head-first into the pit of grief. It's like in some ways the day to day stuff, and the extraordinary stuff like growing a person, helps remind you that we all go on, in any way we can. My best to you and your family at this terribly difficult time.

STEsker

My heart is breaking for you and your family. F&ck cancer. Wishing you love and comfort.

lisa

i am so sorry. Not on the same level but i also know the confliction of emotions. The night before we left for our destination wedding, my husbands grandfather died. we found out at the airport. the funeral was 2 days after we returned from our honeymoon. At the funeral everyone was saying congrats but it just felt wrong. His grandfather had helped pay for our reception.

tracy

I agree with @Babs...if you dont want to talk about it, can we talk about your gorgeous rings. Where are they from?

Christy

Been there & I know it's a slow hell so just wanted to send hugs & say I'm praying for ya'll. It's good to have time to say the important things, to prepare but it's also exhausting for everyone - the waiting game, the trying to make the most of everything all the time, the pain of watching someone you love endure so much. It's ok to let yourself get distracted by something silly & small; don't feel guilty for those things. I wasn't home the weekend my dad passed - he'd been in bad health for years so it both was & wasn't expected. But I don't feel badly about it because I was living & he loved so much to hear about all the things going on in my life. That's the gift that I think we can give our parents in times like these - to let them know that they'll but missed, but not to dwell on the bad; let them know what a wonderful life they gave you. Hugs.

Christy

Been there & I know it's a slow hell so just wanted to send hugs & say I'm praying for ya'll. It's good to have time to say the important things, to prepare but it's also exhausting for everyone - the waiting game, the trying to make the most of everything all the time, the pain of watching someone you love endure so much. It's ok to let yourself get distracted by something silly & small; don't feel guilty for those things. I wasn't home the weekend my dad passed - he'd been in bad health for years so it both was & wasn't expected. But I don't feel badly about it because I was living & he loved so much to hear about all the things going on in my life. That's the gift that I think we can give our parents in times like these - to let them know that they'll but missed, but not to dwell on the bad; let them know what a wonderful life they gave you. Hugs.

Christy

Been there & I know it's a slow hell so just wanted to send hugs & say I'm praying for ya'll. It's good to have time to say the important things, to prepare but it's also exhausting for everyone - the waiting game, the trying to make the most of everything all the time, the pain of watching someone you love endure so much. It's ok to let yourself get distracted by something silly & small; don't feel guilty for those things. I wasn't home the weekend my dad passed - he'd been in bad health for years so it both was & wasn't expected. But I don't feel badly about it because I was living & he loved so much to hear about all the things going on in my life. That's the gift that I think we can give our parents in times like these - to let them know that they'll but missed, but not to dwell on the bad; let them know what a wonderful life they gave you. Hugs.

Kathy

I mentioned in a comment the other day about losing my father-in-law and both parents in the last 3 years. The pain is still very fresh and real, and I remember being surprised that everyday life goes on. Dinner, laundry, all of it. And my baby grandson made me smile and comforted my heart through it all. Again I urge you to spend as much time as possible with your dad. Ask him if he would like the boys to visit, he might feel it's important. Or he might not want them to see him now. Either way is fine. My fil passed away with his wife, all of his 5 children and their spouses, most of his 13 grandchildren and several great-grandchildren in the house. I think the little kids helped to keep the sadness from becoming overwhelming, and I know he felt the love and support of his huge family at the time he needed them the most. Praying for you.

madeline

I am so sorry Amy. I rocked my baby as I held my mother's hand as she passed. Looking back it was one of the saddest, yet most amazing moments in my life. Really truly LIFE. Don't hesitate to just go be with your dad, savor every second.

Issa

I guess you talk about whichever you want, whenever you want. Sometimes both at once. Hugs Amy.

kim

When my grandmother died, the last conscious act my mom and I saw her do was reach her arms up and coo at my 5mo daughter, who promptly stopped crying. I cherish that memory and I tell my girl that story. It's my way of carrying the connection forward. But my shameful little secret is that when it happened, part of me was jealous. I desperately wanted that connection for myself, and I could see that i was too late. There's no right or wrong here. Listen to your heart.

Carrie (in MN)

I have no advice, just want you to know this random internet stranger is thinking of you and is so sorry you are going through this.

Katie Kat

Oh sweetie - this is as beautiful as it is sad. The circle of life played out way too close to home. I only know I'd hug you a million times and kiss your adorable boys (well, Jason would get a hug). I'm sorry, but I'm sort of glad you have new life to ease the pain. There is a song that says something about hearing his father's voice in his newborn's cries. Maybe you'lll get that gift too.

Elizabeth @ Table for Five

I can't put it into the right words, but I think that celebrating life in the face of someone's passing is like...honoring the circle of life. Your Dad would want you to have a safe and healthy pregnancy and to enjoy every minute of it, right? That's the impression I get from what you have told us about him. That's just the feeling I got reading this post. I'm so sorry that this is happening and send you lots of big hugs and love.

Elizabeth @ Table for Five

I can't put it into the right words, but I think that celebrating life in the face of someone's passing is like...honoring the circle of life. Your Dad would want you to have a safe and healthy pregnancy and to enjoy every minute of it, right? That's the impression I get from what you have told us about him. That's just the feeling I got reading this post. I'm so sorry that this is happening and send you lots of big hugs and love.

Christine

Dude, I don't think there is any capital R, Right way to deal with the balance of life and death, especially when you're so in the middle of everything, it's all you can do to just keep putting one foot in front of the other.

I'm thinking of you guys all the time.

Morgan

My dad was diagnosed with lung cancer a few months before I got engaged and died 50 days before the wedding. (So, 9 months later, ish.) Planning the wedding as he was dying, hoping we'd made the engagement short enough so he could make it, trying to balance the happy and the sad... And then the funeral, and weeks later a wedding. Down and up and all over the place. It sucked. Hard.

Babies and marriage aren't the same, but I'd imagine some of the emotions you're going through would be familiar. I'm sorry - it sucks so much.

Jenny

There are no rules for this, no grief manual - that is probably the biggest lesson I learned. Big hugs.

Peachy

I lost my fiance to leukemia in 1996, after bone marrow transplants, weeks in a bubble, chemo, etc etc etc. One of my most valued memories of him - not favorite, mind you, but one I wouldn't trade away - is of my last time with him. He was in the ICU, unable to speak, so very desperately ill he was only able to move his toes and his eyes. But he knew I was there, and I got to tell him I loved him one last time, and that I knew he loved me, and to reassure him that it was okay to let go - that he, as he always had in life, was leading the way and checking things out for me in advance by going first into this last transition. I got to take his hand and look in his eyes and thank him for being in my life and letting me be in his, and to tell him that I believed I would see him again, and to ask him to watch over me until then, because I knew the idea of being able to do so would make him happy. Immediately after I left the room, he passed away.

You do what you need to, and remember, minutes have no memory. The ones you spend enjoying your pregnancy and your dad will not begrudge you the ones you spend grieving. Take it as it comes, and know you have a huge network here to fall back on when you want to laugh, cry, scream, shop, or just do nothing at all. {{{{Much non-stalker love}}}}

Lynn

When my father was in hospice and dying, the worst part was spending time with him (as I wanted to and needed to) when he wasn't really himself anymore. The quiet, inward part of the process of dying is very real, but also disconcerting to those of us trying to say goodbye. I felt that with the diagnosis of cancer so many years ago, and the several month decline, that so much of my grieving happened prior to his death.

Just follow your gut and your heart. Don't let other people tell you how to grieve "appropriately." Near the very end, it helped to comfort him like I did with my baby girls when they would be scared or upset. You are eminently qualified for the challenge of participating in this profound process, and in years to come, you will be grateful for the gift of witnessing it. That doesn't mean that it doesn't suck balls.

Rachel

I am so sorry Amy.

All I can offer is this -- my grandmother passed away several years ago from lung cancer. For days before and in the moments of her death she was surrounded by her family. My dad, his siblings, her grandchildren, her mother. I held her hand as she took her final breaths. My dad stood beside her, and my aunt laid in bed next to her.

In the end we all realized the same thing, that though the days leading up to her death were painful for us, they were meant to be a comfort to her. And being a witness to her peaceful passing has always been a huge comfort to all of us.

Sit by your dad, hold his hand, talk. Let him talk. Tell him all the things you want to and let him tell you anything he wants. Or sit quietly.

In the end you will remember the pain, but I bet you will also remember the peace.

I will be praying for your family.

Suzie

Spend all the time you can with your father, with or without your boys. There is never enough time to just be in the same space as them. Don't worry about laundry, dishes. Just be with him. Hold his hand. Don't worry about what to say. Just hold his hand. It's that being in the same space as him that you will remember, filling the room with love.

I wish I could say that I didn't have experience with this, but I do. Hold his hand. And all my love to you, Amy.

Tina @ Life Without Pink

Oh I am so sorry you are going through this. I had the same experience a few years ago and it was really hard. Sending lots of thoughts your way!

Katie

I'm so sorry for what you are going through. I'm keeping you all in my prayers. But can I say that your presence amazes me. I hope that somehow that means you can have those joyous peaceful moments even amid the heartbreaking ones.

Barb

We love you Amy. The tears in my eyes say so.

Jo

Oh Amy,

I am a long time reader but I rarely comment. I just take it all in. I love your writing-love it. I just have to say that I can't even imagine how much it sucks right now. Can't even imagine. Just thinking of you and wishing you strength.

Susie HInson

I've been through something very similar with both of my parents. I tried to concentrate on the best times we all had together as a family. It was hard because I was so focused on the "now". But after my mom and dad passed away, it helped me to remember the fun, funny, good times and how much they loved me and my sisters. And that's exactly what they each would have wanted us to remember and cling to when we remembered them. God bless all of you.

katie

Thinking of you often (and I mean that in the least threatening and creepy way possible). I wish I could give you a big hug and make everything alright, I really do.

annettek

I'm so sorry it's happening so quickly. I'm sorry it's happening at all. :(

Julie

I lost my wonderful father to lung cancer 31 days before my second daughter was born. I could not get on a plane to attend the funeral and said my goodbyes via phone and I am not really sure he was lucid enough to hear my voice. It happened fast and I often wish I could go back in time to have that last conversation again. Reading your posts recently make my heart break for you b/c sadly I know what you are about to endure. I hope that your children and your new baby heal you when you need it most. I really believe that my baby saved me from a deep abyss of depression. I am not a religious person, but I can feel my dad with me, watching the comings and goings of our family. I am truly sorry that you will experience such sadness at a time when you want to focus on joy.

Josefina

I'm so sorry.

Cassadie

My mom died of cancer in 1996 when she was 45 (I was 19, brother was 13) and I know for a fact that some random stranger from Oregon can't say anything to make you feel better so I won't even try. But I will say this: remember to breathe, say what you need to say, and know that you will get through this.

Kyla

Frowny emoticon.

I don't know what to say, but I'm thinking of you and your family.

Beth

All the love, hugs, and support you could possibly want. I am so very sorry for you and your family.

dj

amy,
i've been following your blog for years. you are my very favorite blogger in the world and even now when i've pretty much stopped reading blogs (it had become an all consuming addiction) i still check in on yours every once in a while to see how noah and your dad and all of you are doing. i wish i had something to say that would be helpful. i think many of your readers have said really wise things. if we were actually friends (instead of this one sided relationship where i feel like i know you so well but am a total stranger to you) i probably would barely talk about your dad at all. a friend of mine's dad had been dying of brain cancer for the past 2.5 years. he finally died a month ago. we would meet every once in a while to chat and i would briefly inquire after him and then i would change the subject and she would tell me about her kids and the annoying guy who cut her off in the parking lot, and it didn't mean she cared any less about her dad that she could laugh about my last dentist appointment. i guess what i'm trying to say is that you don't HAVE to wallow in the grief. you can do whatever feels right to you including belly shots. we're your friends (albeit mostly one sided ones but we do genuinely care) and we just want to take part in the conversation in whatever way is helpful to you.

may you find comfort,
dj

jerry

Amy,
I believe you will see him again. He will be well and waiting for you in a better place. Until that time, he will always be with you. I am so sorry for your loss, I know how it feels.
Jerry

Jessica

It's not uncommon to lose a very precious person right before another very precious person is born. I predict that your new angel reminds you of your dad in many ways. Hang in there honey. When he goes he'll be surrounded by many others, some of whom you were privileged to know and still hold close to your heart. You've been a fantastic daughter and I know he loves you so very much. No regrets allowed. You are perfect just the way you are.

Tina Ericson

Amy,
I know that you remember me and I guess you remember my sister Katie. We all worked together at Phillips and suffered under some of the same people - those who lived at the end of the brown carpeted hall. They know who they are too.
In October we lost our Grandmother and I know that many people will tell you that they were "really close" to their Grandmother. In our case, that does not even begin to come close. She was our life blood, our breath, our world. She was also this to our mother. Katie was pregnant with her second child Christopher when my Grams died. I still cry every day (literally) and I miss her so much, but I see her in my dreams and I feel better. Katie's best friend told Katie the following on the day my Grandmother died and a two short months before Christopher was born: "Your Grandmother had to go help Christopher get ready to enter the world and be with him when he comes into it." I cannot tell you the joy and the warmth that brought us. I suspect that your father is doing the same for your new child, and I am also confident that both will be blessed by the experience. You are in my prayers and I hope with all of my heart that you feel better soon.
Tina

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