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Reply by Jimmie
21 Aug 2015, 3:10 PM

Morning Everyone:

Excellent and wise advice provided by others (Razz, Nat)to Liam's concerns.  I would have found such counsel so timely and helpful had I been in Liam's shoes.  I hope he does as well.  Thanks to all who answered his request for assistance.  If I may, it was great to read Oldbat's response - as intelligent, forthright, and constructive as ever.  You are remarkable, Ms. Oldbat!! Absolutely remarkable. Such a valued, and experienced ally. How are you doing with your own challenges?

Xenia, I was happy to hear from you and to sense the beginnings of a soft, tempered revitalization in your tone.  It is understandable that. your move is not without it's troubles - both practical and emotional.  Still, it sounds like it is something you are also looking forward to in spite of some understandable reservations.  I hope it goes well in every respect.

When we first moved to this part of Nova Scotia, we lived in a small fishing communiyt immediately above the wharf.  We were befriended by
a number of local fishermen one of whom was a great old character by the name of Gussie - "Captain Colin R." - MacDonald (The Captain... reference was to his paternal grandfather.  It was a necessary inclusion to distinguish Gussie from the million other MacDonalds living in this part of the world).  Anyway, Gussie was a great story teller and font of home grown wisdom. One of his favourite metaphors for adjusting to change was the many molting rituals lobsters go through in their lifespans - there comes a time when to move on, to grow, you have to leave the old shell behind as you grow into a new one. There is a period of vuknerability before, during, and after this process for the lobster and for us.  But it is a necessary evolution if we are to keep growing.  Gussie would mock (and smack) me for using "college" words such as "ritual" and "evolution". (I admit, something of his wonderful character is lost in my pretentious translation.)  Nevertheless, though he died a number of years ago, he remains one of my all time favourite philosophers and counsellors, and he  came to mind when I thought of you, Xenia, and your own moment of uncomfortable, vulnerable, but at the same time restorative growth.  It is not essentially a moment of leaving the old life behind (you carry the essentials of your life with you); it is more a moment of making a little room for the new life awaiting to be lived.

Anyway, I will put my pipe down, my wire rimmed glasses and my practiced look of profundity, and stop preaching.  At this point in our conversation, Gussie would simply invite me in for "a dish" - which to my initial surprise meant a drink of rum - straight (not a meal) - and we would get on with the delight of being neighbours. He was a good man.

Good luck, m'dear.  And good luck to all of you out there. I thank you all for your continued companionship.  Gussie aside, this "molting" business  can be absolutely overhwelming and heart breaking at times -  good to have friends along the way.

Air is heavy here this morning.  Slight breeze.  Our youngest daughter is visiting from Edmonton.  Good to have someone in the house again. 

Take care, everyone.


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Reply by Carlyn
22 Aug 2015, 10:04 PM

Nat, I think I'm the one you couldn't remember the name of, only because you emailed me about it :-) lol  I have the same memory issues so don't worry. Have a laugh, take it in stride, it'll come to you eventually. 

Jimmie, and everyone, but Jimmie at this moment is someone I want to address. I was so impressed and felt such peace reading your post above. I'm always learning about these phases of life - caregiving, grieving, living - even long after some of the events have passed. I just wanted to say I found your words and point of focus emanated a very healing and peaceful, calm acceptance. Thank you for sharing your wisdom.

Nat and everyone, I hope all are having a weekend of healing and joy, whether it's loud, quiet or calm :-) 
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Reply by Xenia
26 Aug 2015, 4:35 PM

Good Morning All:

Free day to-day, almost all packed and boxed, my life is now 24 boxes and 1 rocking chair, lol., actually a lazy boy.  

Thank you all for your good advice and understanding of my dilema of moving.  As the move day creeps up closer I am settling in and looking forward to a new and different life.  The cono is up for sale and have had one showing, that was on the day it was listed and hopefully it will move quickly.  I wish anyone who purchases the home will make good memories as John and I did living in this condo.  I am sure they will enjoy the view from the 3rd floor patio looking down on the koi pond and looking out at all the green space, green trees, brown now, watching the people on the sidewalk the other side of the green space on the crescent.

I have had another letter from the Prime Minister's office regarding caregivers and this time they are informing me that once they get in they will definitely look at making tax credits for caregivers and used a few words from my letter.  Also, noted on TV that Trudeau has stated that he will be looking forward to helping caregivers.  Tax Breaks, galore, if they get in.  Demand a plan the group by the Canadian Medical Association that most of us took time to sign up for has asked for more Palliative and Senior's medical care.  Let's hope that this goes over and that our esteemed (lol) MP's do do something for caregivers and supply the palliative care that is needed across Canada.

Jimmie, you stated that you sense a softer tone in my realization of the move, yes, at first I was upset, bewildered and all that went along with the realizaiton that I would have to make the move sooner than later and this was a good time, especially with all the help I receive from my family and the help from all of you on CVH, your understanding of the ups and downs I have been going through this past year and the 8 months since John's passing have helped me get through all this with a sembelence of sanity.

Nat, you are always so helpful and understanding.  Your words help me through many a day as I go back and re read many of the messages, especailly on the days I feel there is no end to the day and the day is too long.

Old Bat, aka Old Bag, how are you doing and has the financial item gotten any better? I do pray all goes better for you and that you are getting more help and understanding.

Today I am waiting for the realtor to put up the for sale sign and all that goes on with selling the condo.  

All for now, take care and hugs and best wishes to all.

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Reply by NatR
27 Aug 2015, 5:16 AM

Hello xenia

lovely note from you
glad to hear that there is some peace in your heart about the new place - and I sppreciated all your comments

yes when we put our belongings in boxes and realize that we don't need all the "stuff" that surrounds most of us - although the stuff contains important mementos and souvenirs  of a lived life - we really need very little - because so much of what really matters is inside us - memories, conversations, special memories

those memories will carry you through Xenia and we will stand by as you step off into a new chapter in your life -  please take us with you so we can hear how you are doing 

your advocacy for seniors and end of life care is valuable "shouting" which we can all do to urge on the powers that be.

wishing you well
have a good day Amd greetings to all the readers ;)
 Hugs NatR 
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Reply by Nouce
27 Aug 2015, 12:22 PM

Love to you, Xenia, and boldness (which you have in spades) for this transition.

I am getting ready to move Pablo to a nursing care placement. I don't know how this will go, although right now he seems peaceful (when he can remember). So send all the good vibes South that you can.


Love to all,



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Reply by Razz
27 Aug 2015, 1:25 PM


Keeping you and Pablo in my thoughts and prayers as you navigate your way through this difficult transistion.  

be good to you - Razz  
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Reply by NatR
27 Aug 2015, 1:41 PM

Good morning Nouce, everyone
Wishing you the best in settling Pablo...wishing everyone a great Thursday....I am sending you all a hug from Ontario...
NatR xo 
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Reply by Xenia
03 Sep 2015, 4:30 PM

Greetings to all On Line:

I have moved and life is going on.  Sadly my youngest, baby brother, who has been living with my youngest daughter, passed away last night.  He was quite ill this past few months and as such we had him placed in care knowing he would not be with us for long.

All this has brought back more memories and this is the 3rd death of friends and family I have had since John's passing in January.  We carry on the best we can and share our sorrow and carry on.

Nounce, sorry I have not been in touch as often and trust you have Pablo settled into care.  I appreciate what you have and are going through at this time.

To all best wishes and I will be in touch again and wish you all the best.

Hugs to all.


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Reply by Nouce
03 Sep 2015, 6:41 PM

Dear Xenia,

Thanks for your words. It seems like dying and loss are all around! Two days ago Pablo's great nephew (age 22) died in the midst of a valiant effort to kick a heroin addiction.

I am working now on the final details for Pablo's move tomorrow. I am filled with anxiety and sadness. I am grateful for you, Xenia, and for all who hold each other as we continue through this painful journey.



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Reply by NatR
05 Sep 2015, 3:29 PM

Dear Xenia and Nouce - and extended forum members

Xenia, so sorry to hear about your brother.  I know it must seem to you like one hit after another.  That is the unbearable part of being a survivor...you live through much sadness and loss...but you are a warrior and a lovely lady - I send you my thoughts as you grieve.

I know your life is full of much stress with Pablo and all that it means to move him - knowing there are no retreats from the move, the changes, the need to keep on keeping on - as you support Pablo.

It is a duty and an honour to do this for your husband, as Xenia and so many other men and women reading this have done caregiving and support for their family members.

I am so glad that there is a place we can all share and support....even if we dont get to the keyboard often enough some weeks.  At least we can still comment after the fact, we can still reach out and wish each other strength - we can still vent when we need to....the door is always open.

I am myself facing a new adventure this month and although it is not about end of life issues, it is a big step into the unknown for me - terrifying.  The end of the month will bring me through it - so if I live to tell the tale - I will be back...:)  

I appreciate the whole group and the non-judgemental way we all connect and share...thank you for giving me that kind of support group to be part of.

There are other things in my life that are changing but for the better.  That is also scary as you all know how difficult it is to move on after sadness, to hope that there are better days, and I am crossing my fingers.

I am going to be making a speech about vulnerable seniors - and reminding my audience that those we care for...need us each day, and for more than just bathing feeding and dressing.  Our loved ones need Moments that matter.  They need to be given joy, love, a feeling of being the Focus of life...for just a few minutes, a few hours, or whatever is possible.

I have been on quite a journey lately, some of it was tough, some of it was unbelievable...and some of it is wonderful and comforting.  That is the life we lead...each day brings us a bit of something new, something old, and something memorable.

THank you all for reminding me that we all journey together, we all cry together, and we all have Virtual hugs together....your notes have meant a lot...watching the stories go by, sometimes being personally in the chat, sometimes just watching over your shoulders...but I am blessed to see the caring and support that happens here.

Hugs to each of you...take today and make it yours...
best wishes to all
from my corner of the country to yours...from my keyboard to yours..
NatR xx 
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