About Me

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Delta, British Columbia, Canada
I took very early retirement from teaching in '06 and did some traveling in Europe and the UK before settling down to do some private tutoring. As a voracious reader, I have many books waiting in line for me to read. Tell me I shouldn't read something, and I will. I'm a happy, optimistic person and I love to travel and through that believe that life can be a continuous learning experience. I'm looking forward to traveling more some day. I enjoy walking, cycling, water aerobics & and sports like tennis, volleyball, and fastpitch/baseball. I'm just getting into photography as a hobby and I'm enjoying learning all the bits and bobs of my digital camera. My family is everything to me and I'm delighted to be the mother of two girls and the Gramma of a boy and a girl. I may be a Gramma, but I'm at heart just a girl who wants to have fun.

Saturday, September 08, 2007

Waiting is so hard...

Update: Dad made it through the operation! The good part is that the surgeon was able to pin the hip and didn't have to do a complete replacement. The bad part is that they couldn't give Dad an epidural with a mild sedation because he has been on a drug that could cause him to bleed out. He had to have a full general anaesthetic which could worsen his mental capacities. So now we wait again...and see how he is when he comes out of it. Thanks to everyone SO much for your kind thoughts and prayers.
The following is a shortened version of a post (from Dec. 06) about my Dad. He had a bad accident at the care home yesterday (Friday) and long story short, broke his hip. Turns out the xrays indicate he'd broken the same hip further down some time in the past and it had healed on its own. Now I know my Dad is one tough old coot, but imagine the pain he must have endured, thinking it was probably a pulled muscle. He was quite the athlete in his day (as you'll read below) and was never one to give in to a bit of pain. The photo is from last October when we celebrated Thanksgiving and my birthday together and you can see his great sense of humour. It's unbelieveable how he's declined so fast this past year. He sure doesn't look 86, does he?

As I write this, Dad is toothless, with a suction tube down his throat, and oxygen in his nose awaiting surgery tomorrow (Sunday) to repair this break. If his old bones won't hold three screws, the surgeons will need to do a hip replacement. He's not giving up because he's so mad at the other old coot who pushed him down. Hopefully, this anger will keep him going so he'll survive the next few days. I also keep reminding him about his next great grandchild coming so he'll have a reason to hang on. But, he is so high risk because of his age and having already survived a quadruple bypass, knee replacement, colon cancer, and the strokes that landed him in the care home last February.

The waiting is so hard on us all. We were at the hospital from noon until almost nine last night when Dad was transferred to another hospital for the surgery. I didn't sleep and only managed a short nap today after seeing him all prepped. My eyes are burning and my throat is sore from crying and worrying about him. All I can do now is pray that God's will be done and that Dad doesn't suffer. All prayers and good vibes gratefully accepted. Thanks everyone...


I've learned a lot about my Dad in the last several years. It's helped me to understand him as a person, not just as my father. He was lucky not to have had to go overseas during WWII, but he was a pilot in the Royal Canadian Air Force training other pilots and patroling the East Coast of Canada for submarines and enemy aircraft. He never talked much about the war until recently and it's been fascinating to hear his stories.

On Christmas Day, my daughter was showing Dad the wonders of the internet. He was amazed when she pulled up the 1946-47 photograph of his soccer team. Dad was a local athletic hero back in his younger days. We have many newspaper clippings from the Vancouver Sun Sports pages extolling his skill on the soccer field. Bookshelves proudly display his medals, trophies, and framed photos. He then became a linesman and referee, and ultimately, Northern Commissioner for the province of BC. He was also instrumental in modernizing the referees' uniforms, changing them from the black and white stripe to basic black with white collar. In 1987, the St. Andrew's Soccer Team was inducted into the BC Sports Hall of Fame. It touched my heart as I watched the memories flooding back to him.

I remember Dad blasting on his referee whistle to call us kids to come home from whatever we were doing in the neighbourhood. I also remember going to soccer games around Vancouver, especially Callister Park. We kids loved Callister Park because it had bleachers and a refreshment stand. We'd run up and down the steps and around the outside of the stadium, stopping for a hot dog and a pop when we got tired. At outdoor parks, we'd play on the swings as my Dad ran up and down the field blowing his whistle, making weird gestures, and waving flags. Before the games, my Dad would always tell us to stay out of the way if a fight broke out. That happened frequently when the Italy and England teams played. We weren't really interested in the games and didn't understand such things as "penalties" or "offsides" but what was important was that we were with our Dad.

14 comments:

beachgirl said...

Hi Leslie,
Prayers your way for your family during this trying time.
Carol

HeiressChild said...

hi leslie, what beautiful memories you have of your dad now, and will always have to pass on to your future generations.

i'm sorry about what happened to your dad, and pray things will go well during the surgery. i'm glad he's still got spunk; it gives him that needed inner strength to fight. i'm also glad he has you and the rest of the family as i'm sure that's an encouragement and inspiration for him.

HeiressChild said...

forgot to say love that picture; your dad's a very handsome man.

Pennys from Heaven said...

My prayers are with you and your family at this most difficult time. My father is also going through to many medical issues for his body to handle, and where he does not have the medical goodness to have a bypass, (he had two heart attacks) he is having six stents put in due to 90 percent blockage, but the day it was to be done, more medical issues...so back home for three weeks. One thing I have learned is his "strength"...we think of our parents as just that parents, but now I realize full well how Strong they really are. Men of that era worked hard, and their "strength" to survive and will to overcome is truly amazing.

Stay strong, and know its also OK for YOU to take care of YOU. Have some "ME" time in all this.

Peg

leslie said...

Thanks so much Carol, Sylvia, and Peg for your good wishes. Dad is scheduled for the surgery sometime today so we wait. In the meantime, I'm going to church and then to the beach later for a baptism ceremony. One of the girls, about 14 or 15 now, was my student in grade 4 and I know her family very well. I'll do an update later and let everyone know how Dad is doing.

Janice Thomson said...

My thoughts and prayers too are with you these next few weeks Leslie as I know exactly what you are going through. My dad just got out of the hospital after having broken his hip too. It was touch and go but after 3 months they released him and he is now walking again with a walker. He is a bit younger (83) than your own Dad but he too is a tough old coot. The strength of these old men is very inspiring. Take care Leslie...will be thinking you.

jmb said...

Oh Leslie, I hope he is OK. It's such a disaster at this age. Last year my Alzheimer friend, whom I look after broke his hip in his nursing home. He just was walking along and it broke. After his surgery he could not remember how to walk and is now in a wheelchair. The bad thing was he could not go back to his old luxurious nursing home since they needed him to be weight bearing and he is now in UBC extended care. I could not find a private nursing home that would take him as an extended care patient. Luckily he is happy enough there and he doesn't even know who I am anymore.
I hope all goes well for your Dad. Thinking of you both
regards
jmb

jmb said...

Oh Leslie, I hope he is OK. It's such a disaster at this age. Last year my Alzheimer friend, whom I look after broke his hip in his nursing home. He just was walking along and it broke. After his surgery he could not remember how to walk and is now in a wheelchair. The bad thing was he could not go back to his old luxurious nursing home since they needed him to be weight bearing and he is now in UBC extended care. I could not find a private nursing home that would take him as an extended care patient. Luckily he is happy enough there and he doesn't even know who I am anymore.
I hope all goes well for your Dad. Thinking of you both
regards
jmb

leslie said...

Well, I'm home from church and as of now, Dad is still waiting to be taken in for the surgery. I understand that accidents take priority and since he is medicated and not in pain right now, he has to wait. Hopefully, he's sleeping off and on and is able to bide his time. Will keep you all informed. And thanks so much for your caring comments.

Lee-ann said...

O! Leslie, I am thinking of your Dad and hope the surgery was a success for him.

A little encouragement from me is your dad looks tuff! (in the nicest way) and so charming, I am so sure he will be having a little fun before you know it.

They just don't make them like this anymore and many a young man could not do better then to sit awhile with a 84 year old like your dad and learn a little.

From the bottom of my heart I send you many prayers for his wellbeing.

Lee-ann

Ruth D~ said...

Oh, Leslie. Comfort and comiseration and shared tears . . . for what you are going through and for the memories of what I went throug nearly three years ago.

I will say that these tough old guys can surprise you with their resilience. Imagine having broken a hip and carrying on with out anyone knowing. Tough!

My thought and prayers in his behalf, and yours.

jmb said...

Leslie, that sounds as good as you could hope for. Sending good vibes to you and your Dad. Take care
jmb

Susie said...

Hi Leslie,
I'm just catching up with all the posts and was so sorry to hear of your Dad's fall. I know how very worried you must be. My prayers are with him and all your family.
My grandpa is 99 and in a care facility, so I do understand much of what you're feeling..
((hugs))

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