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2016-01-13 - 5:13 p.m.

My brother in law, with whom I had a rocky start with but whom I eventually came to harbor real feelings of family love for, has suddenly died of a pulmonary embolism. He started out with shortness of breath, was diagnosed with pneumonia, and today he started having severe shortness of breath that was bad enough to send him leaving work early to go to the doctor. The doc sent him straight to the hospital for a CT scan and before they could get that done, he went incoherent and just died. He died.

The first moment I heard he was short of breath, I thought "pulmonary embolism". I did tell my sister that this is what they check for when someone suddenly has shortness of breath. He'd been having it for days and when they said he had pneumonia, I believed it. Pneumonia causes shortness of breath, too. He seemed to be getting better and then today he was suddenly way worse.

So my sister called me back WAILING. Screaming. She is completely devastated. For all the incompatibility that seemed to exist between them and all the struggles and things I couldn't understand her being ok with, she CHOSE him and she loved him. That is how I was able to accept him and come to like him. I figured my sister chose him and she is happy in her life with him so I should just be glad she found someone she loves.

He was plotting something heinous for me for next Christmas. He gave me this hideous ugly clown musical figurine from Hell. Just, so ugly. And this past Christmas I gave it back to him as a gift. He was planning to saddle me with it again next time. I suggested he give it to mom. Throw everyone a curve ball. We talked about how we could pass it around the family with someone new getting the "turd" each year. I regret that there was ever a time when he and I didn't get along.

Pulmonary embolism is a clot in the lungs. You can have a PE and live, but if it travels, it can get in a spot that kills you, fast. My sister now knows 2 young people who have suddenly dropped dead of pulmonary embolism. The nephew is very upset. He is on his way to comfort his mom. I told him to drive careful - like he is transporting eggs and dynamite because he GOTS to live. I'm right behind him.

Here's how God works: Today, I got done with my work early. Today my nephew got fired from his job. (a story for another day) Today we picked up nephew's car from the dealership where it was being repaired. My sister had loaned her truck to her step son for a few days and was stranded at home when she got the news that her husband was "incoherent" and having some kind of horrible medical emergency at a hospital an hour away. She had to wait for her stepson to get there and he did the driving. This is good because she would have peeled out of there like a bat out of Hell and possibly wrecked on the way.

So now, her son is on his way with a car that is repaired and no job to worry about getting permission from. He took funeral clothes. This is so surreal. I had to tell my parents and my mother came completely undone. My father is a rock. He will help everyone. I am also a rock. But I need a rock, too.

I've got permission from my boss to go and as soon as I get done here I'm slinging it together to hit the road. I might as well not put on makeup. I feel like I have been hit over the head with something. As I was driving to the dealership and my sister was screaming into the phone that her husband was dead, I felt this weird pain start at the back of my neck and travel down my spine where it was throbbing in the small of my back. I have to chill out. I have to help my sister and I can't be the injured party. heh.

I don't know how she is ever going to be happy again.

Life is so fragile. You just don't ever know if the last time you talk to someone is The Last Time You Ever Talk To Someone. Never hold grudges, try not to be unkind. Give people the benefit of the doubt. Try to leave the world a better place than you found it. Don't let the sun go down on your anger, because you just never know.

Mr. F - No grudges. Only love. I love you.

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