Sunday, April 17, 2005

Charles is Home

I have not been able to openly discuss Charles and his current condition since I really am somewhat in the dark on the details. The reason I am in the dark is because the people (family) currently responsible for his caregiving are not as verbose on his condition and I usually get something like, "He's about the same," or "He's doing fine," or "He's looking good." Sheesh, what kind of information is that when I've been informed by the doctors that he was only given between two weeks and one month to live and that was nearly a month ago?!? Even Charles himself only tells me he's feeling good. Hey, I'm not complaining that he's feeling good but my gut tells me that "feeling good" is a deceptive description of the reality we face.

I am sounding like a blabbering idiot here so I will tell you what I know. Charles went home last Thursday and has been ecstatic ever since. He spends much of his time outside sitting and resting and looking over his property which is a nice country setting. Carroll seems to have risen to the challenging occasion and, as Charles put it, "He been a surprising blessing." Jason is still somewhat missing in action as he goes about being worthless and self-centered. Using MSN Messenger, I chat with Charles daily. I would call but he can't talk and has limited minutes on his mobile phone (he has no land-line) and complains about using them "needlessly". Anyway, here are some excerpts from a chat we had last night that will give you a better idea of what's going on.

Charles: Hey Bone
Tony O: Hiya, Bro'!
Charles: Whatcha doin'?
Tony O: Just surfing the net and blogging
Charles: blogging?
Tony O: Remember, I told you about blogging. Sort of an online journal that other people can visit and comment on.
Charles: o yeah
Charles: been nice today and I'm feeling good
Tony O: Just how good are you feeling? What does it mean when you say you are "feeling good"?
Charles: means I am surprised how good I feel. I thank God every day that I wake up breathing
Tony O: I thank God every day I wake up breathing too! (winking smiley)
Charles: after my pain meds kick in I am usually pretty good for the rest of the day
Charles: my legs and feet are swelling so I keep them elevated
Charles: what did you do today?
Tony O: yard work mainly
Charles: Carroll cut some grass today. Jason and Hank went fishing and will be gone all night
Charles: I am really glad to be home. It has given me extra energy, I think.
Tony O: I hear you spend a lot of time outside enjoying nature
Charles: as much as I can. Do a lot of sitting and resting mostly but yes
Tony O: sitting and resting are good
Charles: Carroll has surprised me and is a blessing with how he's really pitched in
Tony O: I guess you are proving the doctors wrong
Charles: wrong in what?
Tony O: In how much longer you have
Charles: What did they say?
Tony O: I feel stupid or bad for telling you. I thought you knew all along. I thought you knew when I was there with you.
Charles: I don't know. All they said to me was they weren't sure how much time I had when I asked.
Tony O: I probably shouldn't be talking about this
Charles: tell me what they said. don't lie to me. you promised.
Tony O: I have never lied to you, Charles and won't start now. Teresa and I have been the ones telling you the truth all along
Charles: I know
Charles: tell me what the doctors said
Tony O: after they removed your respirator and put in the trache and discontinued all treatments because the tumors weren't responding and the new growths had appeared Dr. Kyassa said you had two weeks to maybe a month
Charles: doctors don't know everything. It's in God's hands not theirs. God must have let me stay for a reason.
Tony O: You are teaching me so much, Charles
Charles: how
Tony O: you are teaching a lot of people a lot of things. How to be strong and not give up. How to have dignity in dying. I am so grateful for your example in my life. I think you still have a lot of things to teach some people. Maybe Carroll and Jason?
Charles: I think so maybe
Tony O: You are God's messenger
Charles: the message is love
Tony O: that's all there is... love or fear and you are bringing love
Charles: I need to rest. I love you, Tony
Tony O: Okay, you have a peaceful night, Little Bro'. I love you, Charles.
Charles: I will catch you tomorrow on chat
Tony O: I'll be looking for you... Love ya', Man!
Charles: xoxoxo

So now you all know as much as I know. I wish I were with him.


Nema Pridem said...

The deepest truths in life can be found in painful conversations like this one. I wish you strength and peace.

VikiBabbles said...

Thank you, Tony, for sharing this story with us. Charles is teaching a lot more people as a result.

sapere aude said...

Thank you Charles for your words of wisdom and thank you Tony for sharing it. I needed an injection of faith. Take care and God bless.

Kitty said...

Tony, thank you for sharing such a private conversation with us. I must admit I'm sitting here with tears streaming down my face right now. I wish there was a way I could send you back to spend time with Charlie, but I don't have the means to do so. I'm glad you two are able to talk each day. You both will continue to be in my thoughts and prayers.

Continued blessings on you both!

Kim said...

((((((((((tony)))))))))) seems like all i ever do in here anymore is hug you!

B said...

We never know how many people we touch. I hope that you know how much you and Charles do for all of us.

Abby Taylor said...

Wow. Thank you. And thank Charles.

heidi said...

I can just echo what everyone else has said. Thank you for sharing Charles' peace with the rest of the word.

Wildcat said...

Very touching post, Tony. I feel for you and admire both you and your brother. I wish you two could have more time to be such good and caring brothers to each other. Just treasure every moment as if it were the last.

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