Journey of a Terminal Man update

Chapter Seven


It has been some time since I posted. On 2nd May, 2016 (our Wedding Anniversary), I was asked by the physician to return to the hospital. They were going to do more tests believing I had some kind of lung infection. They used every test and antibiotic there is, but this proved there was no infection of any kind.  Unfortunately my oxygen levels were getting worse. Originally set at 6 then set at 8, but that didn’t work so set at 12, working so far. I stayed in the hospital for a few days and was released home on May 6th now on an oxygen mask, a hospital bed in our garden room and minimal walking.  I was able to preach on Mother’s day.  The service went very well, but I must admit I was very exhausted, straight to bed. At this time we realized we really needed someone to be with me on a continous basis. We know that home care can only give so much time and they are doing a fine job.


At Garry’s request, I agreed to continue his (our) blog story.


Barbara’s voice continuing now as Garry’s condition has transitioned to end-of-life care.  It is so incredibly difficult to witness his struggles to breath, weakness and persistent coughing and to see him get thinner and thinner.  I love him so very much.  We both weep with sorrow about his deterioration.  Garry’s sister was unable to continue to step in as the carer for him.  I had viewed this as the only option and felt very distraught about how we would manage.  I began to have conversations with Garry’s son, Corey about his father’s care needs.  Corey stepped into the role.  He has been faithful to come to our home every day and sit with his dad until I come home from work.  This was an unexpected provision to address Garry’s care needs.  It is a beautiful to witness the growth in the father and son relationship as these two are bonding together.


In the foreground, our beautiful garden is in bloom.  The lilacs are abundant and fragrant just outside the sliding glass door where Garry is.  We have been cutting them and bringing them into his room.  On the May long week-end, I planted a flowering tree in our garden in Jeanie’s memory (Garry’s first wife of 41 years).  My deceased husband was a farmer.  He taught me well how to plant a garden.  Our veggie garden is planted now, the second year it has comforted me to put it in myself.  I arranged many pots of plants and flowers just outside the sliding glass door where Garry is.  The peonies are in full bud and will bloom soon. We had Garry out on the patio for a picnic on May 23rd and on May 28th for his grandson’s thirteen birthday party.  He was so happy to be outside and to see our garden.


Today, is May 29th and we are now transitioning to end-of-life care in our home.  I will be home now to partner with Corey in giving Garry comfort care.  My wonderful Garry, has penned me a love poem from his heart almost everyday since our Wedding on January 2nd, 2016.  My ipad is full of his romantic poems.


2 thoughts on “Journey of a Terminal Man update

  1. Dear Barb and family, I was so sorry to hear of Garry’s death when I came into the hospital today after a couple of days at an off-site meeting. I am fortunate to have Barb as my across-the-hall neighbour at West Park Healthcare Centre. I’ve had the opportunity to get to know Bard and through her, to know something of Garry. I watched Barb with such pleasure fall last year as Barb’s love for Garry bloomed — she was so happy and excited about the love they shared. Barb showed me her wedding photos in January and I loved seeing the pictures of a very happy couple and the two families. I was happy for Barb and felt she’d found what we deserved. I was shocked to hear of Garry’s diagnosis and full of admiration at how they coped with the devastating news. They leaned on each other, their faith and their families. They seemed to reach a peace with something that seemed to me to be so brutally unfair. I admired Barb for being content with the small pleasures — family, gardens, this blog.

    My sympathies to Barb and her family and to Garry’s family. I’m glad for Barb that she had Garry but so sad their time together was so short.

    Joanne Cole

    Liked by 1 person

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