Thursday, March 19, 2009

Protect Your Head

I am saddened by the news about
Natasha Richardson. I know how
much her family must be in disbelief
and shock. We have been there.

This brings so much back!

Warren's Dad had a spinal chord
tumor, had endured two surgeries,
and radiation. He was on the road
to some sort of recovery.

Out of the blue he fell head first
into a piece of furniture. From that
point and time the Gene we knew was
not there.

We were so blessed that the new Gene
was still sweet and gentle. Sometimes head
injuries cause behaviors and aggressiveness
that are not typical of the person.

We have no idea why he passed out...or fell.
It could have been related to his medicines
or the fact that he had some paralysis on hie
right side.

He got help very quickly but there was nothing
that could be done for the massive brain bleed
in the frontal lobe.

As a family we tried all we could do.

We got Gene into a nursing facility very near
our home and Georgia moved in with my mother.

For months we could only watch Gene decline.

It consumed our lives.
We would bring him his favorite
treat, milk shakes, until he could
no longer swallow without choking.

We spent countless hours with
him. We read, we sang,
we just loved him.

Finally we were able to get Hospice involved.
They were wonderful!
From support for us as family to the volunteer
who came by and sang to Gene...they were all
just fantastic.

Finally, on April 1, 2007, Gene took his final
breath with many of us around his bed.

The kids did not want to be there.
We didn't make them.
In fact, they did not often go to
the nursing home. It was too hard.
Right or wrong we were fine with the
few visits they made and the fact that
they had much happier pictures in their
heads of their Grandpa.

Gene's passing was a sad relief.

We knew he had no chance of recovery in this
life...however he was experiencing total healing
in the moment of his departure.

Our hearts break in our missing him here.
The children were so close to him.
They long to just spend an afternoon with
their Grandpa building something, or just
chatting. He was a great companion.

Before the brain injury,
even with his paralysis he could cut corn off
the cob faster than any of the rest of us.
Years of experience and consistency allowed
him to do this.
So, when we do corn...we talk
about Gene.

You never know when a news story is going to send
you into moments of memories that are so bittersweet.

My deepest sympathies go out to the family and boys
of Mrs. Richardson.

For those of you who have the option of wearing a helmet
when riding, skiing or other activity...please wear it.
It is not ridiculous or over the top.
It is being thoughtful and considerate.

Unless you have been in this type of a
situation you cannot comprehend how one
second of time can change everything!

You cannot reverse the effects of brain damage.
You are not the only one who is effected in the case of
this kind of injury. The ripples go out like waves on
a pond to all who love you.

Please, protect your head.

'Cause you are loved!

♥♥Becky K.♥♥


Vee said...

This certainly was sad news this morning...

Your personal story with your husband's father is compelling. Such experiences create compassion and tender feelings for our fellow brothers and sisters, don't they? Thank you for your compassionate spirit today.

Terri and Bob said...

A lovely post.

Gayla said...

I was very sad about Natasha, too. I am sorry to hear about your own personal loss, as well. We have those silences in our lives when a news story or even an advertisement links itself with our heart in some magical bond. I so understand.

Barb~Bella Vista said...

Great post Becky. Very thought provoking!!


Alicia said...

What a tragedy for Richardson's family. I cant EVEN begin to imagine the devastation. I am sorry you have been there too! Our brains and heads are such fragile things that we have and you are right, we MUST protect them and care for them well. We only get one!

JD said...

I was sad to hear about Natasha too, and Yes, it always is a reminder of the losses that we ourselves have felt. I have a step-mother very ill in a nursing home right I know how stressful that time can be. I'm sorry for your loss too, but bless you for the care you gave to your loved one..

Miss Sandy said...


Your tribute to Gene is a wonderful testimony of love. I too was saddened by the news of Mrs. Richardson's untimely death and my sympathies go out them family also. Thank you for the first hand warning of taking safety precautions.

Lisa said...

Yes, wonderful loving post! I just feel so much for little kids when tragedies happen. Their lives change forever in an instant and the world stops for no one. Very loving post, we need that!!