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Thread: Today we went to my uncle's viewing.

  1. #1
    MissMuffins's Avatar
    MissMuffins is offline Senior Member
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    Today we went to my uncle's viewing.

    My 82 year old uncle passed away Wednesday of congestive heart failure. From the moment they met nearly 2 years ago, he and my SO were fast friends. They spent nearly every Saturday and most Wednesday evenings since together, on the flight simulator, building RC planes out it in my uncle's shop, cleaning said shop, flying planes, crashing planes, putting planes back together, cussing planes, shopping for planes...and when they weren't doing that, they were talking about planes.

    The grumpy guy was with my uncle when he died. My aunt had just stepped out of the room with her eldest son. The grumpy guy and the grumpy guy's younger son were with my uncle. They called the nurse, my aunt and my cousin back into the room. The nurse verified my uncle had died, and then my uncle's pacemaker began trying to do its job. The grumpy guy took my aunt out of the room, and my cousin stayed with my uncle. I hear it wasn't very pretty, and I'm glad I wasn't there.

    When I saw him in the hospital on Tuesday after work, when I first entered the room I thought there were two beds and began looking for my uncle. Then I realized there was only one bed in the room, and the man I didn't recognize was my uncle.

    My uncle's body is to be cremated and his funeral is Monday. I'm glad I attended the viewing; now I can remember him looking like he could wake up any moment and give us fits, instead of as he was in the hospital.

    It's been a tough week.

    This past Monday was the grumpy guy's first chemo treatment. It took 6 hrs 40 min. He drove himself home, and shouldn't have.

    He wasn't able to drive Tuesday, and had to hang out here at the house until the FedEx with one of his post-treatment medications arrived. He wasn't able to visit my uncle at the hospital until I finished work and was free to drive him over; by then, my uncle was heavily medicated and unconscious. He had become agitated that afternoon; about an hour before we arrived, it had been necessary to place him on pain management and anti-anxiety medication.

    On Wednesday, he was able to drive himself. He spent half an hour or so with my aunt and uncle before my uncle died. The grumpy guy has read 20 Minutes in Heaven and several other accounts of the experiences of those who've died and then come back. One thing the accounts have in common is that the person who died was aware of what was going on in the room, almost as an observer. I told the grumpy guy that my uncle chose his moment--he knew my aunt had left the room with my cousin, he knew the grumpy guy was with him, and he knew he wasn't alone.

    We went to my aunt's this evening, to hang out with cousins I haven't seen in 20 years or more...and their children, and grandchildren, many of whom I haven't met til now.

    MM
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    "Our past is a story existing only in our minds. Look, analyze, understand, and forgive. Then, as quickly as possible, chuck it." ~ Marianne Williamson

  2. #2
    Faith's Avatar
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    MM, I'm very sorry for your loss. He sounds like he was a grand old guy. I'm also sorry that your SO lost such a close friend and companion. I would imagine, with his own mortality in mind, this loss is affecting him deeply, perhaps at a level he can't access or express. I wish you both comfort.

    It's eerie but I've experienced many losses in my life and the lives of friends, where the dying "chose their moment" to pass when the person(s) who would be most stricken (usually spouse or child) had briefly left the room, sometimes just moments before.
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  3. #3
    whiterose's Avatar
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    I'm so sorry for your loss, Miss Muffins.
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  4. #4
    theREALTrish's Avatar
    theREALTrish is offline Senior Member
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    I'm so sorry for your loss, MM. Sending prayers and good thoughts to you and your SO.
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  5. #5
    chi77 Guest
    Sorry MM. It's nice that your Uncle had such a good companion in his last years and last moments.
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  6. #6
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    HUGS!!! I'm so sorry for your loss. With so many things you have to deal with, when it rains it pours. HUGS
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  7. #7
    truckman Guest
    I'm very sorry for your lost my friend. Hugs to you and yours.
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  8. #8
    MissMuffins's Avatar
    MissMuffins is offline Senior Member
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    Thank you, everyone. The last couple of months have been difficult; as we've been going through everything with the grumpy guy's health, we've also been seeing my uncle's health decline. On the day of the grumpy guy's biopsy, they were actually in the hospital together--they both kind of got a kick out of that.

    This afternoon, the grumpy guy made some of his famous potato salad and pico de gallo to take to my aunt's. Both were a hit. Things were a bit quieter there this evening (yesterday, at least 15 family members were there) and we hung out some more. Before we came home, I helped my aunt box up leftovers to go to the church for the dinner after the service. She says she's sleeping and eating okay.

    Tomorrow is the service. Depending upon what they've arranged for music, I may sing for about 20 minutes before the service begins, as people come in. It's only about 6 songs. My uncle liked music, and it's the best flowers or card I could give my aunt. We'll go early anyway, because we have to leave early--the grumpy guy has chemo, which is shorthand for a series of events which include blood draw, chemo, and a consult with the doctor who's coordinating his care. Tomorrow, the actual chemo infusion should take about an hour.

    My uncle is to be buried in our family cemetery, which makes me really happy as he was an uncle by marriage and has been really good to my aunt. As much as my cousins love their dad (who was my aunt's first husband, whom she married at age 17), he was somewhat of a jerk and I was always rather scared of him. The life she had with my uncle (her second husband) in the short time they were together was kind of her reward for the hell her first husband put her through.

    MM
    Last edited by MissMuffins; 07-01-2013 at 02:50 AM.
    "Our past is a story existing only in our minds. Look, analyze, understand, and forgive. Then, as quickly as possible, chuck it." ~ Marianne Williamson

  9. #9
    gorillagirl Guest
    sorry, MM.
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  10. #10
    soul is offline Senior Member
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    Sorry for yours and Grumpy guys loss MM.
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