Topic: Dad passed away Christmas Day

The Christmas angels called Dad to be with God tonight, on Christmas Day.  Even though my family was somewhat prepared for the inevitable, never in our wildest dreams did we think he would leave us on Christmas Day.  He went so quietly and quickly, and no one in our family was with him at the last moments.  That is what hurts the most right now.  There were changes the past couple of days that I should have taken more seriously, like the congestion in his lungs, sleepiness, fatigue, and difficulty eating.  Somehow I thought that as long as he had his incredibly healthy appetite and was eating like a horse, he would be with us for a long, long time.  However, Hospice called today while I was preparing Christmas dinner for my family, saying he developed pneumonia, but were quite uncertain about whether this was the beginning of the end.  We decided that I would continue cooking my dinner, and they would treat his symptoms and keep him comfortable.  Later this evening the nursing home called and said I better come because he may not last.  By the time my brother and I got there, he was gone.  We didn't even get to say goodbye.  I was quite a mess, but the hospice social worker was able to offer me some comfort.  Perhaps my dad didn't want a lot of people around and preferred to spend his final moments in peace and solitude.  Maybe he even picked Christmas Day as the day he would be in heaven with my mom.  Only God knows.

At least I am grateful that he was in no pain and very little distress, and that he did not suffer the discomfort that others have faced in their last days of this horrible disease.

On the upside, I was so glad I could bring all my girls to spend time with him on Christmas Eve.  Although he was very sick and unresponsive, he sat up in his wheelchair and ate a little bit, and I could tell he was very happy grateful to see his grandchildren.

I hope I can survive the coming days of mourning and funeral arrangements.

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan,

I am so sorry for your loss. Atleast your Dad did not suffer & passed away peacefully. I am sure that he knew that you & the girls were there on Christmas Eve.  Remember that he will be in your heart forever & that he is now in a better place & no longer suffering from this horrible disease.  Many of us are dealing with similar feelings to yours. I recent wrote to Dr. Giles about it and my question & answer are posted there. You may want to check it out. His answer did offer me some comfort and insight. It may also be of some help to you & your family.  You and your family are in my thoughts & prayers.

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: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan,
My sincere sympathies on the passing of your Dad.  Know peace in your heart that he is now with your Mom and our Lord.  Wishing you strength for getting through the grieving process. 
Karen

Wishing all God's blessings!

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan,
   I am so sorry for your loss. It is good that your Dad did not suffer, and that he is now in heaven with your Mom and with our Lord. A friend of mine gave me a poem this Christmas - it is titled "Merry Christmas from Heaven", and it is about this very subject. It did comfort me, and talks about our loved ones spending Christ's birthday with Christ s this year, which is something that my husband talked about for years - seeing Jesus face to face.  I am sure that your Dad knew his Grandchildren were there with him, and was comforted by that. We will be here for you when you need us - please remember that.


Joyce C.

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan,

I'm so sorry for you and your family.  You are all in my thoughts and prayers.  I know you are grieving that you were not with your Dad when he died, but I'm sure if he could have chosen, as your Dad,  he would chose to go quietly and leave you only with happy memories.

I know he is in Heaven with your Mom smiling down on you and your family.  You WILL have the strength to get through the coming days with all the details that need to be done because you ARE your Dad's daughter.  You are a wonderful legacy he and your Mom have left on this earth.

You will be ok.  Hugs to all of you.  Know that you are not alone.

Pam

My Mom lost her one year battle with CC on April 3, 2009.

"A prognosis is simply an audit of how truly precious each day is.  Live each day to the maximum, celebrate what was, and what is - Don't spend your life looking forward to what will or might be." .... words of wisdom from my beloved son on hearing of his grandmother's CC prognosis.

6 (edited by marions Fri, 26 Dec 2008 16:26:12)

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Dear Jan....so sorry to hear about your Dad's passing.  Seems as if he picked his time, and having everyone around him for Christmas Eve must have given him the comfort he needed to join those Cholanciocarcinoma friends who have gone before him.  So glad for him not to have suffered.
My heart is with you and your family in this so very special time,
Marion

THIS INFORMATION IS NOT INTENDED NOR IMPLIED TO BE A SUBSTITUTE FOR PROFESSIONAL MEDICAL ADVICE. YOU SHOULD ALWAYS SEEK THE ADVICE OF YOUR PHYSICIAN OR OTHER QUALIFIED HEALTH CARE PROVIDER

7 (edited by JeffG Fri, 26 Dec 2008 21:30:51)

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Hi Jan My sincere condolences of your Dad passing.  You are more right than you may think.  He just might have wanted to pass on with out all the fuss and loving.  Myself ,I would feel quite clostraphobic with so many people surrounding me.  I've also told my family no matter what or when , we have said our I love you's and hugged and and kissed many times over so please don't feel bad if that should happen.  Emotions are natural and will strike regardless of before ,during , or after.  At the end, Once your life is in the Lords hands, you just never know, when the blessing will be given.
God Bless You and you Family!
Jeff

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

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan,
All my sympathy on the passing of your dad.  I know you're beating yourself up that you didn't get to say good-bye, but I know that he loved you and would never begrudge you for that. I wish you some solace in the days ahead.
Joyce M

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Dear Jan, my sincere sympathy to you and your family.  Praying for strength and comfort for all of you.  So thankful your Dad wasn't in pain.  Take care of yourself.

Carol

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Jan-

I am so sorry for your loss. I know it is so hard. I hope that you take care of yourself.

I'm sure your Dad knew how you felt about him. My mother in law works in nursing homes as a RN. She said that sometimes people just don't want lots of ( or maybe not any) loved ones around. I wasn't there with my Grandma and I was her caretaker too. Its so hard but I have to tell myself that it was for a reason and she knew how much I adored her. The bigger picture was that she is with her family in heaven and not in any pain.

Be kind to yourself and know you did all you could.
Tonia

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Oh Jan I am so very sorry for your loss.  Be kind and gentle with self and remember that Dad is always with you. We can't touch our loved ones and hold their hands anymore, but from far far away, they are holding ours.......

Hugs and many man y blessings

Carolyn

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Dear Jan and Family, We are so very sorry about your dad. Sounds like he just wanted to spend Christmas Day in heaven. Remember that its not the last kiss goodbye that matters most but all the kisses before that.  Our prayers go out to 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: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Thank you so much for all your kind thoughts and prayers.  Your words have helped me in so many ways.  I think you are right that Dad perhaps chose Christmas day.  He knew how much my mom loved Christmas Day with her children and grandchildren, and wanted to be with her.  At least that thought does give me comfort. 

Dad was buried yesterday next to mom on a cold, blustery, sunny day.  He was sent with military honors, and the graveside service was beautiful.  I've witnessed the service with the gun salute, taps, and flag folding, but to actually receive the flag "on behalf of the President of the United States" was such a humbling and emotional experience I'll never forget.  His friends and family were all around to support us over the last couple of days, and it was comforting to know he was loved by so many.  I provided the funeral director with photos of dad from long ago until his 85th birthday in July, and the result was a beautiful video of his life.  It was so moving, and will be a wonderful keepsake.

For me, now, I am feeling so many things: relief that he suffers no more, a little bit of guilt because I don't have to make difficult medical decisions any longer or see him waste away in the nursing home, sadness that he both my parents are gone, but mostly a kind of emptiness.  The last five years, especially the last 12 months, have been consumed with nothing but his care.  I am sure I will find plenty of things to do to replace the time, getting his affairs in order, for instance, but I just feel like it will be a huge adjustment getting some of my life back.

Re: Dad passed away Christmas Day

Dear Jan,
I am so sorry to hear of about your Dad, but I am glad that his funeral service gave you some comfort. You must take some time for yourself now, dont be hard on yourself, it seems as if your Dad did choose his moment to go, knowing you would all be together to support each other.
Love Sue x