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Reply by moderator | modératrice
24 Dec 2015, 5:24 PM

Greetings from me as well. You've not heard much from me as Katherine has been managing the discussion forums. But I remain in the background, reading each and every message.

My holidays wishes come with sunshine today after many days of grey. We don't have snow and ice, but at least we have sunshine.
Peace to all.
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Reply by NatR
24 Dec 2015, 6:15 PM

Happy Holidays Colleen,

thanks for everything you do behind the scenes on behalf of caregivers and patients
best wishes to you and yours!

power just came back on after an outage ... Across the province many towns are experiencing high winds and interruptions 

best wishes 

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Reply by Jimmie
24 Dec 2015, 6:39 PM

"... looking through my bedroom window, out into the moonlight and the unending smoke-colored snow, I could see the lights in the windows of all the other houses on our hill and hear the music rising from them up the long, steadily falling night.  I turned the gas down, I got into bed.  I said some words to the close and holy darkness, and then I slept..."

Child's Christmas in Wales - Dylan Thomas

So........ here's my rather bold wish for each and every one of you for the season: May you find yourselves over the next few days in the tender, solicitous embrace of a friend, family member, or stranger (I personally am up for all three!).  I firmly believe that love and support need to be felt as well as heard, that touch coveys more truth than words. Hold the ones who are dear to you for sure,  but why not be BOLD, why not INVITE yourselves to be held as well.

Amen...I am off to play polo on a local farm where they raise miniature horses, then Sarah and I are going to drain a few drams of stolen altar wine and sing Christmas carols as best, and raucously, as we can.  I wish you all well - you who deserve so much the gift of peace, and rest, and the solace of those who love you.

Take care, my friends and companions -


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Reply by Xenia
31 Dec 2015, 9:27 PM

To All of (as Jimmie Says) Friends and Companions on CVH"

Wishing all of you a Happy New Year and wishes for good health and continued sharing amongst all who are on CVH'

There will be a New Year's Eve party here in the residence, music, wine and dances for those of us who can still do a shuffle.  The rest of us (or is it we) who cannot participate due to having to use a walker will sit and watch and enjoy the dancing of those who still know the steps to waltzes, etc.  This is where I sit back and hold onto my emotions as John loved to dance and his waltzes, tangos and jitterbug dances were enjoyed by all and he never had a lack of partners.  I was never a dancer as I have a wierd muscle illness but we did do the first and last dances so tonite I shall sit back and enjoy the dancing of others.

Christmas as good.  15 of us for dinner and then the girls took me away for a night at the Casino Hotel.  Had a good time, spent their money and never won a penny to take home but felt good as it was their money. lol.  Good times with my daughters and my son took me shopping today.  Family is still very active and caregiving to me and I appreciate it very much..Still can't get used to saying my daughters, used to be our daughters, etc.

Once again, Happy New Year and keep on posting.

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Reply by NatR
31 Dec 2015, 11:54 PM

Hello everyone and Xenia,
glad you had a good holiday under the circumstances - you are a trouper - and good for you - spending your daughters money at the casino - go again and see if you can win enough to spoil yourself with something nice:)

happy New Year to all and special thanks to KatheRone and Colleen for helping us to stay connected - suggesting topics and ideas to chime in on:)

best at wishes to each one
i will sit quietly in my chair crocheting with a glass of wine and the TV programs that help us count down the end of the year - right to midnight!

hugs all 🎉🎊⛄️🎄🎊🎉
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Reply by KathCull_admin
03 Jan 2016, 2:36 PM

Good morning
As I get older (and realize I am not at all likely to keep them more than a week!) I find rather than making resolutions, I 'wonder' about what the new year will hold - what changes will come about, what happiness, what sadness. I am thankful that I don't know the future, but I do like to wonder...... 

I have appreciated the lovely way of greeting in Guatemala - cheek kissing. The act involves gently touching the shoulders of the other person and touching cheeks - intimate and warm - and it has a way of creating a bond. This takes place between women and men. Then over the past few days we met 3 women from Quebec who cheek kiss both sides! I think you would approve Jimmie!

As part of our new years eve, my daughter, her boyfriend and I released baby sea turtles into the Pacific Ocean. My little Juanita (the name just worked for me:) made her way down the black sand until a wave caught her and took her out.  I would love to include a picture - but that skill is difficult for me here.

I wish for you all pockets of peace and rest this year. Like little Juanita - I hope gentle waves of memory carry you in difficult times.
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Reply by Jimmie
03 Jan 2016, 5:16 PM


Excellent news about "Little Juanita".  What a wonderful ritual with which to begin a new year.  I am wondering if the Virtual Hospice could create a "virtual" new year ritual similar in nature wherein the extended community (or its representatives) could together make a meaningful life giving gesture of some sort in honour of those we have lost and as an affirmation of life itself (even in the midest of mourning), and its continuation.  Grief can sometmes be assuaged through participating in acts (rituals) of tenderness and compassion. 

In terms of the cheek kissing, I am all for that! Fabulous custom.  Unfortunately, beng quite tall, I have spent the bulk of my years kissing the tops of heads often to the amusement or consternation of the recepients.  Fortunately, I appear to be shrinking as I age, and if  am lucky enough to live another fifteen years, will then be able to participate more enthusiastically in such civil gestures.  I am looking forward to that!!

Soak up the sun, Katherine.  Canada is grwing its seasonal, winter beard!

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Reply by Nouce
04 Jan 2016, 12:40 AM

Thanks so much, Katherine, for the image of Juanita. I have a ceramic sea turtle hanging in my kitchen window, given to me by a dear friend who walked with me for several years during Pablo's decline. She moved away, and I have missed her greatly, but your story and my ceramic turtle are coming together to bring me and Ihope all of us a sense of life for the days ahead.



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Reply by Xenia
08 Jan 2016, 5:49 AM

Greetings to All 

Sp ,many wonderful messages about New Years and this may be the year all the wishes sent to us will be fulfilled and the New Year will bring all contentment and happiness.

To-day my day began with knowing the anniversary of John;s passing is on Sunday.  Someow my mind has been playing video tapes of our life, from the time we met to the time of his passing.  I shake my head wondering what is happening.  I try to tell myself this will pass but to no avail.  I have tears pouring down my cheeks, I wipe them but they keep my cheeks wet.  I need to talk to someone, yes, the Hospice people.

I pick up the phone and a comforting voice is there to help me through my afternoon.  She tells me that the first year of a loved one passing is very hard and we know we are alone.  We now truly grieve and I listen and know that she is telling me what I am aware of.  The death, the memorial, the move, the new life, tears yes, but not like today and she tells me they have been stored up so long as I have been strong, she asked me what strong meant to me and I had to tell her it meant holding back my true feelings and not really being in contact with them.  Often I would ask myself this past year what was wrong with me, I had grief, I had pain but I remained as stoic as I could.  I tried to remember why I didn;t cry at the memorial, why I couldn't  cry when I spread John;s ashes at his parents gravess.

The Hospice person put me in contact with a counsellor from the Hospice and we spoke for a while and she will be coming to see me on Tuesday.  Again, I am told I have to let my grieving come out and not push it down as I have been doing.  I need to feel the pain I have been pushing down and having rapid heart beat and not sleeping.

Wow, as I write this I feel as if I am confessing all the hidden fears, pain, grieve I have held for the past year.  The 15th...5 days after John;s passing on the 10th would have been our 60th anniversary.  Why does this really matter, is it that important, not really but it is so close to his passing and will always be a reminder of our marriage and the years we spent together.  A lifetime with one person.  Some record I think.  Where did the years go and where did this last year go.  

Enough of my self pity.  The family has arranged for all to get together on Sunday, dinner out as they didn;t want me to be alone.  I will miss not having John with us as we would have family dinners at least twice a month and we all looked forward to getting together.  A noisy bunch sharing jokes, laughter, food and memories of the family and we will be doing the same on Sunday so I am looking forward to this time and be thankful I have a family who cares for me and remembers dad and keeps his memory alive .

To all thanks for listening and for letting me blow off some steam.  I miss all of you and your messages and wonder at times if I am losing you as well, selfish of me knowing everyone has so much to do in their lives and I am content to go back and reread the messages and they help me when I need understanding and comfort from all on CVH.

Take care and keep in touch.


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Reply by oldbat
08 Jan 2016, 2:44 PM

dear, dear Xenia,

Let go!  Let go of all that grief and pain that you've locked away so firmly, not just for the past year but for the past many years when you ignored your feelings to better focus on caring for John.  Something you did lovingly, tenderly, compassionately.

Let it all out.  It's time.  The longer you keep it in, the more it will fester and hurt you - not just emotionally but physically, too.

You are a tiny plant, a seedling, speading your tendrils and reaching for the sun.  Nurture your newness, your new life.  It will grow and give you the strength to create new memories, while treasuring the old.

And, yes, keep on sharing your brave new life.  With your counsellor and with your many, many friends on CVH.  You are NOT losing us.  You will NEVER lose us.   Some of us, like me, may be taking a time-out to deal with tough issues, but we ALL hear you and care for you.

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