Topic: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

My sweet, sweet Butch is gone. He passed away peacefully at 9:26 PM on Thursday night. He struggled so long and so hard, and he was so brave. At the end, I held his hand and prayed with him. He couldn't talk, but he mouthed the words that he loved me. It was a beautiful moment, if such a thing can be at a time like that. All the pain and suffering was gone, his eyes became clear, and he walked into the arms of the Lord. I was so fortunate to have my cousin Sharan here with me. She was a hospice/home health nurse for many , many years, and she flew in Monday from Dallas to stay with us. We took care of him, and hospice here helped us out, also. He was walking - and talking - right up until Tuesday, although very, very weak. As a matter of fact, I took him for a ride to see the autumn leaves last Saturday.

As I said to Lainy, I am so happy we are writing to Oprah, and fighting back against this dreadful disease. It truly is a monster. I pray for healing for all of you still fighting, and strength for the care givers. Thank you all for being here for me - it had helped tremendously. I am also writing the veterans and trying to get recognition of their part in Butch's illmess - he is a vietnam veteran, and I believe that he got this cancer by ingesting parasites in the water supplu in Vietnam. I would like to see them post public service announcements - to get your bile ducts checked if you were in Vietnam - that could save some lives.

Joyce C

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,

I am so sorry for your loss of Butch, but know he is now in a better place & no longer suffering from this terrible disease. I am glad that the end was peaceful for both of you. Just remember that he will be in your heart forever. Now we must go on & fight the fight with the VA. I know that both Jim & Butch would want us to try to help others that are or may soon be in the same situation that we have all been in. If I accomplish anything I will let you know & please let me know how you are doing also. Take care of yourself & be strong. I know that is hard to do right now, but Butch will be watching over you & giving you strength along the way. You are in my thoughts & prayers.

Hugs & Love,

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dearest Joyce, we are truly saddened by Butch's passing. Even though Passing to another joyful room, where he is happy and healthy!  And you eased his journey from entrapment to peace. You sound like such a wonderful, loving person. Please hang in here with all of us as your advise and your
caring are needed. Our thoughts and prayers  are with you and your family.

Teddy ~In our hearts forever~ATTITUDE is EVERYTHING
Any suggestion I offer is intended as friendly advice based solely on my own experience. Please consult your doctor for professional guidance.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce, what a fighter Butch was!  I'm so very sorry.  How wonderful you were able to take him for a ride to see the beautiful fall leaves last week.  Hold on to those and many more great memories of your lives together.  May they comfort you in the days ahead.  Take care of yourself.

Carol

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,
                I am so sorry for your loss but what beautiful final moments you have to remember in your heart for ever. How wonderful that you are thinking of fighting for other victims at this time. I am thinking of you at this very difficult time. Take care,
                      Pauline

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,

All the sympathy in the world from the other Joyce. I know your loss is unbearable right now, but what a beautiful passing your husband had, and it was a gift from you.
I hope you find some peace in the days ahead - all good thoughts and prayers going your way,
Joyce M

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce and family,
Thoughts and prayers offered for your Butch and for your strength.  "The will of God will not lead you where the grace of God cannot protect you". 
Be comforted that Butch did not go in vain, but as a warrior of this dreadful battle. 
With sympathy,
Jolene

"Faith in something greater than ourselves enables us to do what we have said we'll do, to press forward when we are tired or hurt or afraid, to keep going when the challenge seems overwhelming and the course is entirely uncertain."     ~g. b. hinckley

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce
I was so sorry to hear of the loss of your beloved Butch.  I had followed your difficult journey on your website and had so hoped for a good outcome.  He fought so hard...you both did.  Your love for each other was always so clear.  I always enjoyed hearing what you were cooking up for him!
Thoughts and hope for strength and peace for you and your family. 
Jean

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,
I'm sorry for your loss. I really hoped things would work out but it was just too much for him. He went through so much the last few weeks Take care and we will all keep you in our thoughts.  Mary

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

I know how you are feeling at this moment as I lost my husband in January 2008 and I'm truely sorry for your loss. My husband Gerry was also in Vietnam and I believe with all my heart that he also returned from Vietnam the parasites or because of Agent Orange or both. So if you make any headway with VA I'd sure be interested to know.  Cathy

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,  I'm so very sorry to hear your Butch has passed on.  It makes me feel so happy, that your Butch was able to pass on so peacefully.  Also being able to mouth "I love you" before departing was such a moment to cherish forever.

God Bless You,
Jeff

Take it to the Limit,One More Time! (Eagles)

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce, my deepest sympathy to you and your family at the loss of your husband.  I know that you are comforted that he was peaceful and able to express his love for you.  I am just so sorry, Joyce, and I pray that you are going to be able to find some peace and comfort as time goes on. 

God Bless You,
Sophie

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,

I am very very sorry for your loss. I hope time will help you find peace in your heart. My prayers are with you.

Mercedes

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,

I could feel your love for Butch in your posts, I am so sorry you have lost him.

Patty

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,
I know exactly what you mean about your last few moments being beautiful, I felt the same with Ray on Sunday. It is all we can ever hope for at the end. Take strength in knowing we are all going through the same thing. Love Sue

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,
I am so sorryfor Butch's passing. Your last days together sounded beautiful and full of love. Big hugs.

Kris

Cancer is a word, not a sentence.

36 year old patient with buckets of hope

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce, I'm so sorry to hear of Butch's passing.  My dad passed on Tues Oct 7th at 8:30pm.  Even knowing that it's coming does not make the pain of losing a loved one any easier.  We had the following printed on the prayer card for the viewing and rosary for my dad...

The Best
God saw that he was getting tired,
And a cure was not to be.
So He put His arms around him,
And whispered,

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Rachel,

That is lovely & so appropriate. You made me cry!

Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Rachel,
   That poem is just beautiful - thank you so much for sharing. I am so, so sorry about your Father. I do think that what is helping me the most right now is to know that we are making these attempts to fight back - the Oprah letters, the veterans claims to (maybe) force the government to speak out to undiagnosed Veterans, etc. Everytime I look on this board and see that people are banding together to help, I feel a bit better. I also believe that our loved ones who have gone on are guiding us along this path towards victory over CC.

Joyce C.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

It has been 10 days now, and I am having a very hard time. I was able to get through the 1st few days in pretty good shape, and I thought that each day would get a bit better. However, I am now feeling incredible sadness, and depression - I guess I crashed! I have another week before I go back to work, as I have many things to do first, but - this house is AWFUL for me right now. We bought this house together just before we got married, and Buch loved it so. I have always loved it also, but it is so big, and everywhere I look I see him, and it is just so sad. I want to remember the good times, and there were SO many, but right now I am remembering these last few months and all he went through.  He was always my emotional strength - I am a worrier by nature, and he was not - he held me up. I am praying God will give me the strength to get through this. How long am I going to feel like this? We had such a happy life together, and it has been so many years since I have coped with grief that it actually frightens me. Can someone tell me how to jumpstart my coping mechanism? At least it is Sunday, and in a few minutes I am going to church - we were not able to go for quite a while, and this is another first - going alone, but - I think I will feel better. 

Joyce C.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce, 

I have a lot of the same feelings. Unfortunately it does get worse instead of better, but it seems to go in waves of ups & downs which I think is rather normal.  I do have some good days & then some bad.  It has been almost 7 weeks for me which is almost as long as Jim was sick, so thinking about that is making me sad.  I have no real answers for you as to how you will feel or for how long as I still haven't got it figured out myself! You never really expect to be in this situation, so you really don't think about it or plan for it. For now I am just going One Day At A Time & sometimes its 1 minute at a time!!!!!  Some days I feel like I am coping pretty well & others I am an emotional wreck. Hopeful going to church today will give you some comfort. Everything now is one first after another. I am finding that almost everyday there is another first time alone situation to deal with.  As you said, after so many happy years together it is so hard to think of having to go on alone. Know that I am thinking of you & that this site & all of the great people on it are here to help & support you.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

22 (edited by pauline Sun, 19 Oct 2008 15:07:47)

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,
               I just want you to know that I understand exactly how you are feeling and it's so terribly sad and painful. I like you still go over and over those last few weeks and feel tormented sometimes. I also miss Anthony all the time and the house is full of him. I do actually find this a comfort though and I also like to put photos up around the place so that I can look at him as well as think of him.
             I found, after about 4 weeks that I could start talking to Anthony and this really helped. I also found that it helped to go out for a walk and think of him. I have asked him for advice on what I should do and I have imagined his replies. I find this comforting too.
             It's such a difficult process and I think you just have to take it slowly, not pushing your self too much but, at the same time, giving yourself small things to achieve on a daily basis.
             I don't know how we cope longer term. I miss Anthony terribly all the time. I do know that Darla and I have supported each other a lot and that has really helped. Sue is also now going through this and so are you. All our husbands died within a few months of each other of this same devastating cancer. I think the best we can do is to keep supporting each other, keep remembering our loved ones and, as you have said, keep fighting to get better treatment for others with this disease.
          Please know that I am thinking of you and please keep telling us how you are.
           With love
                Pauline

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Pauline and Darla,
  It helps me so much that you have shared your experiences with us. In the weeks preceeding Butch's passing, when he was on hospice, I was reading your entries each day, knowing that I would soon be joining you. And now I read sue's posting and feel such empathy with her also. It does help to be communicating with other people who have travelled the same path that Butch and I did. This whole thing is still sort of surreal.  I know what you mean about pictures. I have our wedding picture on the dressor in the bedroon, and I kiss him goodnight each night before I go to sleep. Our poor dog - we have a 5 year old Italian greyhound named "Flash", and he is so sad. He spent more time with Butch than me, as Butch was retired and home during the day. He was with us on the bed (we had the hospital bed set up in the living room) when Butch passed away. He jumped up, howling, and ran to the door barking - wanted out of the house! He has never looked for him - just knows that he is gone, and mopes around, with sad eyes. He wouldn't even eat for a few days - he is a little better now. I am so glad I have him - he and I are mourning together.  He is getting a LOT of attention from me, I can tell you, and he sticks pretty close to me these days. Dogs seem to have this sense, and they know things that we can't figure out how they know them, don't they?
  Going to church did help, once I was there. I have never gone to our church without Butch, so that was traumatic (a big  "first"). For now, I have to skip the going out to breakfast which we always did after church.  Eventually, I would like to be able to go out to breakfast myself, but am not up to it yet.
  Thank you so much for being here for me. Somehow, it helps to just write this down, and get it out. I have always been an independant person, with a great career that i will be returning to. Imagine - I can't even go to breakfast alone - Butch would laugh at me.

Love - Joyce

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Joyce,

I too like you & Pauline have pictures everywhere & find myself going through old ones all the time & reliving the experiences connected to them.  I have a favorite of Jim that I keep with me all the time. I also sharing your feelings about breakfast alone. Jim & I went out every Sunday & Wednesday for breakfast & then spent the rest of the day doing whatever we decided to do. I also have not been able to go alone. My one sister & I get together almost every Wednesday for breakfast, but that is the closest I can get right now.  It is nice that you have Flash to keep you company. It seems that dogs do have a sense that we do not. Our dog passed away years ago & we never got another one. We both thought that was traumatic as, like you, the dog was like another child to us. I never dreamt that I would be dealing with the loss of Jim. I never even gave it a thought much less tried to prepare myself for this. I can't imagine anything else that could possible compare to the great pain, sorrow & void that I am feeling now.  I think we all feel that this is somehow surreal, but atleast we have found this site & each other for comfort & support. Nothing can change what has happened to all of us. Our lives will never be the same, but since we have no choice but to deal with what we have been given in life, it is good to know that others care & share in our loss & grief. Take care & keep in touch.

Love,
Darla

"One Day At A Time"

All of my comments and suggestions are just my opinions and are not a substitute for professional medical advice.   You should always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health care providers.

Re: Butch passed away on October 9th, at peace and at home

Dear Joyce,
I am so sorry to read of your pain just now, I symapathise with you so much. I too have a dog a littel Cavalier Kind Charles Spaniel whid is nearly 13 years old. Ray bought her for our daugther Sam when we moved to this house and she was missing her old friends. he claimed not to like the dog but when no one was watchingused to stroke her and pet her and she was devoted to him.She is so quiet and has such sad eyes I could cry every time I see her.
I have just told Darla and Puline I had a bad moment tonight when I went to bed, I laid on Rays pillow and couldnt smell him any more for the first time simce he died I really cried. I have been putting off changing the beeding even though he died over a week ago - I suppose hygiene will win in the end!
I have actually moved Rays pictures to the windowsilll so I dont catch sight of him whan I am unprepared - It upsets me too much.
I know we all go through the same feelings on the same timescale so it is so important for us to all talk together and comfort each other.
Ray only died 3 days after your husband so I guess we are pretty close in our feelings.
Lots of love and hugs,
Sue