Monday, September 28, 2009

mosses monday XXXVI...

i found him in his darkened room with
a ventilator tied in his mouth
(he was blistered ear-to-ear from having
constantly been moving his face side-to-side
fighting the vent),
and his hands were tied to the sides of the bed.
his eyes were open but were "fixed".

i laid my head gently on his chest
and sobbed...
"please, GOD, please..."

those weren't just words i uttered to God. i was pleading for Him to reveal Himself to me. i couldn't feel His presence and didn't like feeling alone. i wanted to know if i was supposed to tell my mosses it was okay to go or if i was supposed to tell him to keep fighting. i wanted to know if i was supposed to pray for a miracle or if i was supposed to pray for God to take him.

but, there was no answer.

just as the icu physician predicted, mosses' condition continued to deteriorate with each and every visit. the pneumonia had spread to his other lung, his fluid output had come to a near halt, and he had yet to regain consciousness.

the first 36 hours of the 48, which the doctor had given mosses', sped by so quickly. from wednesday night until friday morning i prayed for an answer from my Father.

there was a reason mosses' had told
me just the week prior that he was not
ready to die anytime soon, or so i thought.

still, no answer came.

on friday morning i arrived at the hospital for the 8am visitation. jean and mosses' two nieces were standing at the icu doors waiting to be allowed in to see him.

jean told me she had sent mosses' black suit to the dry cleaners and the eversons (life-long, church friends of the mosses) had begun to prepare a country ham for the bereavement dinner, etc... other arrangements were discussed, but i was too numb to absorb any more information.
the words "country ham" took me back in time to the many Christmases i'd spent with the mosses, which included country ham, grits casserole, greens, green jello with pineapple and nuts, pecan pie... a fire in the fireplace, family, friends, angel ornaments (made by mrs. moss), silver tinsel, and toddies.
automatically, at 8am the doors opened. the 4 of us entered. jean and i stayed behind as only 2 visitors were allowed in his room at a time. a male nurse greeted susie and mosses' other niece. susie turned around to us and motioned for us to join them. as we neared them susie told us the nurse wanted us to all be able to spend the full time with mosses... that the nurse said mosses had had a really bad night.

without coming right out and saying it, the nurse wasn't sure mosses would make it til the next scheduled visit time.
when i walked in his room, i couldn't believe how much worse he looked than the previous night. he was so swollen, his skin was ashen, his eyes were almost completely clouded over, and many of the blisters had burst on his face making it look like he'd been severely burnt 

still he flailed fighting the ventilator and the hand restraints. mosses looked like a chained animal. it made me physically ill seeing him that way.

"during the night, we had to tighten everything," the nurse explained, "for his own well being. that's also why the sides of the bed are padded."

i stood back while the three visited. the whole scene was so surreal...

after a bit, they excused themselves. i inched closer to mosses and pulled a chair up next to his bed. then i untied one of his hands and lowered the safety rail. i sat with his hand i mine. it was all i could do to hold on to it as he was fighting my hold too.

"mosses," i said, "i don't know what i'm supposed to do... how i'm supposed to pray. i don't want to lose you, but i don't want you to lie here and suffer any longer either."

mosses was still so strong and moving so much i had to use both of my hands to hold on to his hand. i took his left hand into my left hand whereas our palms were touching, and i locked my thumb around his. i cupped my right hand over-top his hand and held on for dear life. i then pulled his hand in mine down to the bed beside him and lay my head atop.

it was at that very moment that God revealed Himself, and His words came to me.

"God, take him now if he is ready,
but, if he is not ready. leave him,
and leave him whole!"
(i had never prayed so boldly in my life.)

i started to cry.
i cried harder.
the harder i cried the more still mosses became. i cried until i could cry no more. mosses fought til he fought no more.

i sat there with my head lying on his still hand,
which was still embraced by both of mine...

both of us were spent.
(to be continued...)

love and God's blessings,

ps you will find earlier entries in ascending order on my side bar entitled, "our love story":)

Saturday, September 26, 2009

football homecoming 2009...

(jacob and katherine)

and another...

here they are 2 years ago.

(football homecoming 2007)

time goes by so quickly...
cherish every moment:)

love and GOd's blessings,
dani xx

Thursday, September 24, 2009

thread in time thursday...

(dani, jeanne, and ginny)

i found this photo a few days ago, and it made me smile:) it was taken nearly 18 years ago here on the lane during an engagement, Christmas wassail ginny and i were hosting for jeanne.

i love gin and jean, and they love me.

when i found it and showed it to katherine, she laughed and asked what i was wearing... before telling her it was a lanz dress, which was very in style at the time, she responded i looked like a pilgrim:/ oh well... she really would have thought i looked like a pilgrim if she'd seen my shoes; they were black patent leather capezios with a flat bow on the toe, ha!

did i look like a pilgrim to you?

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

Monday, September 21, 2009

mosses monday XXXV...

 all i could hear in my head were john's words "he was despondent". for the next 9 hours, all i could think was "God, mosses isn't ready yet... i'm not ready, yet..."


finally, i made my way to the lane. when i opened the door of the van john was there to greet me with a hug and a kiss; he grabbed our luggage and follow katherine and me into the house. once inside, he told me i needed to hurry to the hospital as it was almost the 6pm visiting hour for the intensive care patients.

i looked at him, "still no change?" i asked.

john shook his head, "no..."

quickly, i washed my face, brushed my teeth, slicked my hair back into a ponytail, and headed out to the hospital.

when the elevator doors opened i hurried around the corner and buzzed for the nurses to open the intensive care ward's doors so that i could go back and see mosses. the doors automatically opened, and i only took a few steps before a nurse greeted me.

"are you dani... here to see george moss???" she asked.

"yes, ma'am," i responded.

"i'm supposed to direct you to go into the family meeting room."

fearing the worst, i followed her.

she opened the door for me. i entered to find mosses' family, his icu physician, and his power of attorney there in the middle of a very serious conversation. everyone looked at me kind of oddly.
to this day, i don't know why i was directed into that room...
as i had no business being there.

nonetheless, there i stood as the doctor explainedmosses had about 48 hours left to live. he was suffering from congestive heart failure, pneumonia, and kidney failure. he proceeded to say  he believed it futile to do more to sustain life.

 mosses' power of attorney then spoke up saying she agreed with the doctor.

i suppose i went into immediate and total shock and disbelief, and my face must have expressed just what i was feeling.

"dani, is there something you want to say or ask?" mosses' power of attorney asked me.

i started crying and could hardly talk, but i said i didn't think mosses was ready to die, and i asked the doctor if "doing no more to sustain life" meant they were going to take him off the ventilator and discontinue his iv.

the doctor said he would be left on both... he would just do nothing more. he went on to say mosses' was in such grave condition the vent and fluids wouldn't be enough to sustain life once mosses' kidneys completely failed.

mr. moss' nephew shook his head and commented he'd watched his mother suffer while on life support and he just could not stand the thought of watching his uncle suffer any longer...
i felt selfish and guilty.

after excusing myself from the meeting room, i ran to mosses' icu cubical. i found him in his darkened room with a ventilator tied in his mouth (he was blistered ear-to-ear from having constantly been moving his face side-to-side fighting the vent), and his hands were tied to the sides of the bed. his eyes were open but were "fixed".

i laid my head gently on his chest and sobbed...
"please, GOD, please..."

(to be continued...)

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

ps you will find earlier entries in ascending order on my side bar entitled, "our love story":)

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Saturday, September 12, 2009

there are silver linings...

katherine has been elected junior class president this week!

we are so proud of her:)


wonderful new friendships have formed.

and, old friends have reunited.


we have had an adventure...

which resulted in a friend getting a new puppy
and a puppy getting a new friend:)


a new couple has been formed.


and last but not least,

maggie has enjoyed every minute of it:)


katherine contributes the sweetness
to the one who is watching over it all...

from his new place in heaven.


love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

a light in the window...

after our embrace, i knelt on the floor by phyllis. i noticed her hand resting on the on the arm of her sofa; i gently took it into mine. it was awkward i was there and maybe inappropriate as i wasn't family. but i was there all the same...
there to offer some sort of comfort, 
there because tiffany asked us to come, 
there because chase had been like one of my own.


words were said but not many...

mainly just "why?" and the such...

out of a deep respect for chase's parents,
i'll keep the very intimate details to myself.
i will, however, share some of what we knew 
to be true at the time.

chase was at a going away party for a friend who was leaving the following week to work as a page for the us senate in washington dc.
chase called home at 7:30 to tell his parents his girl friend's dad had come to pick her up and he would be home in about an hour.

chase was alone in his vehicle, wearing his seat belt, and on his side of the road when the accident occurred between 8pm and 8:30pm.

a 56 year-old man was driving a large pick-up truck traveling in the opposite direction, crossed the center line, and hit chase's car head-on.

the news report and rumors about chase having had a passenger hadn't been accurate. it was the driver of the truck who had had to be cut from the wreckage and flown to the hospital.

i understood that
at around 9pm, randy received a call from someone who told him chase had been in a wreck (i don't know how much more information he received at that time).

it was also my understanding that randy called a state policeman (i think a neighbor).  the neighbor made some calls then returned randy's call unofficially notifying randy, it was true... chase had been in a head-on collision and had not survived.

chase's parents sat waiting for nearly 3 hours after the accident before there was any type of official confirmation.


when the detective, the coroner, and a state policeman arrived, i gathered katherine, jacob, and barrett. when we walked outside, i saw the three officials walking, heads down, toward the house. they had had to park their vehicles on a different street because there were so many people who had gathered on chase's street (the number of individuals lining the street had probably doubled or tripled in the hour we had been in the house. chase was loved!).

katherine, the boys, and i got into the jeep, and i started the engine. there weren't many people right there in the cul-de-sac, so, i was able to get my jeep turned around in the street's end circle. slowly i drove. the people, mostly kids and friends of chase, respectfully parted allowing me to make my way down the street.

through the tears in my eyes, i recognized many faces but one caught my attention. sarah. sweet, sweet, sarah... there she stood with tears streaming down her swollen face. she had been at our house many times over the years. she, too, had been friends with chase for many years. i stopped and rolled down my window to give her a hug.

bless her heart...
she, too, was totally grief stricken.

while we were hugging, she saw that katherine was sitting beside me, she asked me to wait there. she went around the front of the jeep to katherine's door. when katherine opened her door the interior lights came on in the jeep.

what happened next was so surreal.

kat and sarah embraced and both began to openly sob. trying to keep a little bit of composure, i looked away from them. when i did so, i noticed that the crowd around us seemed to have all their eyes fixed upon my backseat. the light allowed them to see who was in the vehicle with me.

in slow motion, i turned toward katherine just as sarah noticed over katherine's shoulder that jacob was siting in my back seat.
"OH.MY.GOD! OH.MY.GOD!" sarah screamed as she pulled away from katherine. "JACOB! OPEN.YOUR.DOOR!" he did, and sarah grabbed him loudly sobbing, "WE ALL THOUGHT IT WAS YOU! WE THOUGHT YOU WERE WITH CHASE!" sarah held him tightly, and they cried and cried.

everyone around us openly wept...
tears of GREAT sadness...
tears of GREAT relief...
tears of GREAT sadness.

for some reason only God knows, katherine and jacob were tired and had decided not to go to the going away party. hannah had made plans to go out with another friend prior to being invited to the party (so she did not go). finally, barrett had just forgotten about it and had instead chose to stay at home that night. otherwise the five would have likely all been together just as they had been the previous night and the whole day of the horrible tragedy.

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

Sunday, September 6, 2009

a peasant lost...

(jacob, chase, katherine, hannah, and barrett)

a week ago last night, we received devastating news on the lane...
a dear friend had been killed in an automobile accident.


katherine and jacob nervously came into my bedroom, "mom, people are posting on facebook there was a really bad wreck. they are saying chase was in the wreck... quick, will you turn on your police scanner?"

i did, but the scanner was unusually quiet.

katherine and jacob returned to her room to see if there was any more updated information.

in the meantime, john and i were watching tv. our local station had a "breaking news" report. the reporter, said that there had, indeed, been a head-on-collision on one of our county roads and one of the drivers had been killed. his passenger had had to be cut from the wreckage and life-flighted to a nearby hospital.

as soon as i saw the car, i knew it was chase's.

i turned to john and shook my head.
my eyes welled up with tears.
my heart began to break.


many of you long-time blogger friends of mine will recall that katherine and hannah referred to their three best guy friends as their "peasants".

chase ryan trent was one of their "peasants".


i quickly got out of bed and put on my clothes. then i made my way to the kitchen and checked my cell phone for missed calls. i had MANY missed calls. the most recent was from hannah's mom, linda. i immediately double-clicked her name in order to return her call.

when she answered, i knew. "dani, there was a wre..."
i interrupted her, "was it chase???" my voice broke.
"yes..." she said. "he was killed, dani."
"no..." i replied as i physically sank.

katherine and jacob were standing right there with me. all the color drained from katherine's face, and jacob, in horror, ran out the back door. katherine chased after him.


"who was the passenger, linda?" i asked not knowing if i really wanted to know considering the image i had in my head of chase's car.
"we have heard that the passenger was 'a jake or a jacob'..." she hesitated.
"linda, jacob hagan is here. it's not him."
"oh, thank GOD!" relieved she exclaimed back into the phone.

i told her barrett was at home... it wasn't him either. as we finished our conversation, katherine told me jacob was on his phone with barrett, who wanted desperately for us to come be with him at his house. so, i grabbed my purse and keys.


on our way to the jeep, i told jacob to call his mother and let her know that he was okay... as it seemed there were those who thought he was chase's passenger.


on the drive to barrett's house, there was only the sound of muffled sobbing.

when we arrived, the three friends saw each other and embraced. for that moment in time, no one else existed. in total shock, i could only stand frozen and watch.


after a bit, katherine came to me and told me chase's girlfriend, tiffany, had asked that we come to chase's house to be there with her and chase's parents. hence, the kids climbed into the jeep, and i drove them to chase's house.

when we turned onto chase's street, i noticed the street was lined with kids and neighbors all waiting, wondering, and mourning. i stopped on the cul-de-sac right in front of chase's house. we somberly made our way to the front door and entered.


the house was mostly dark, but a light from the den shone through the kitchen. we walked toward the light and found chase's parents, randy and phyllis, and their pastor sitting in the den.

"oh, dani," phyllis said as she arose.

i made my way across the room to her and hugged her and cried with her.

love and God's blessings,
dani xxx

please keep chase's family and friends in your thoughts and prayers.