Thursday, October 9, 2008

Homecoming

I arrived home yesterday afternoon. After my dose of Phenergan (to treat the nausea from the narcotic which suppresses the cough), I immediately fell asleep. These days I always think about the song "Go Ask Alice." Of course my drugs are not nearly as fun. For the most part, my drugs just make me very sleepy and disoriented. In fact I talk in my sleep constantly now and I also find myself typing on some imaginary computer. Then there is profound diaphoersis, whole body sweats, that happens 2-3 times a night. I have never sweat like this in my entire life. With each event, I look like I just ran a marathon.

Last night as I drifted off to sleep I hoped that being in my own bed might make a difference. Unfortunately, I was mistaken. The night was awful. By 2:30am, Bill needed a break and my mother and father took turn keeping vigil by my bed. I finally found sleep around 6 and slept through the morning routine. Upon awakening my symptoms reappeared; I was having great difficulty breathing. In fact, I felt like I was drowning.

At one point I asked my mother the time. I assumed she was going to say that it was well after noon. "It's 10:45," she answered. I was devastated: how was I possibly going to make through the day? Eventually the nurse got an order to increase my continuous dose of fentynal from 25 to 37.5 micrograms. After that I could finally breathe.

In addition to the breathing difficulties, the skin hardening, which had stopped years ago, has returned with a vengeance. The skin on my legs and torso are so taut that it is difficult to stand up straight. The worsening in my illness over the past weeks alone has been extraordinary.


My parents, Marie, and Bill kept vigil by my bedside much of the day, sometime all together and sometime one-by-one. My mother has lost so much weight from her constant worry. She has aged so much in the part 9 months. My dad stares off into space. I wonder where his mind goes: old memories, a comforting place, or simply nowhere. Despite their grief they both told me repeatedly today, "Let go, MIchelle. You have suffered enough." My mother told me how proud she was of me in so many ways. She had always mourned my leaving home at 17 never to return. She perceived that time and space as wedges in our relationship. "In the past nine months," she said, "I feel like we felt in love all over again." I feel the same way. I know how much she loves me. I told her how much I loved her homemade hot chocolate on cold days, the way she she celebrated every holiday, and the way her cupcakes always sold out first on cupcake day.

After I showered today, my mother helped dry me off and handed me my robe, "Can I have this when you are gone?" She asked. It's so like her, to ask for something simple rather than a piece of jewelry or the like. "That way I can wear it in the morning when I drink my tea. "Please come visit me," she cried. "I will mom. I will."

Bill and the home care nurse agreed I needed to go back to the inpatient facility so I am going tomorrow. I asked Bill point blank, "How much more time do you think I have?" "A couple days," He answered soberly. To be given that prognosis by my eternally optimistic husband is hard. I did finish everything I wanted to do ...

I will try my best to keep writing. I'm stoned alot of the time so don't expect much from me!

88 comments:

JC Heery said...

I can hardly see the screen as I type--the tears are overwhelming me...I am so sad to think of your passing and yet, I want so much for you to be free of your agony. You are surrounded by all those that love you and have given you permission to let go...let go my friend, be at peace and submit to God's loving presence. My heart aches for Bill, Amelia, Aidan, your parents, brothers, countless dear friends of yours....I do not want to say goodbye but realize your earthly time draws to end at this time. Thank you for being my friend..I will forever cherish our friendship and will continue to think and pray for you and your family. I wish you a peaceful end to your valiant battle. You are my hero. I look forward to seeing you again...I love you...Jennifer

Deborah said...

My thoughts are with you. You have shared so much with all of us -- now it's time for you to concentrate on your loving family and finding peace.

You have taught me so much and I will always be grateful to you.

Deb

Sharon Sulecki said...

Thank you for sharing so much Michelle! We are all better for it. Love you!

xo

Songbird said...

You are in my thoughts, with prayers for peace of body, mind and spirit.

Becca L said...

I just wanted to say how incredible you are, and how much I get from reading your journal. My mom died from breast cancer two months after my 13th birthday [im 17 now], so it's oddly been nice to get your perspective on everything. You're truly an incredible person, a real inspiration and you should be so proud of everything you've done for yourself, your family, and this world. The post that stuck out to me the most was the one about you buying presents for your kids to have once you've passed on; i cried when I read it. That is something I so truly wish my mom had done for me and my brother, and I think it's incredible you've done it. In regards to your children, as a child who is in the position they will soon be in, they'll be ok. It's hard, and it's sad, and I even get angry sometimes, but it's also alright. For every bad day, there's a good one. I think about my mom every day; she's my hero and best friend and I have no doubts in my mind that your children will feel the same for you.

You're truly one of a kind. Thank you for writing this & I'll miss reading new updates, but I intend to continue re-reading it. It makes me feel closer to my own mom..

Becca<3

Asheley said...

There is nothing to say except that I love you, and I will always cherish you as one of my life's many mothers.

Asheley

Fannie said...

Praying for peace for you and for your family. With all of my heart.

~Issy said...

We are all blessed for reading your words. Know that i keep you in my constant thoughts and prayers....

Many soft hugs...

mamamaus said...

"I did finish everything I wanted to do ..."

How blessed are you to have been able to prepare your family and yourself for this much too early parting from them? And now they are giving you permission to release yourself from the physical suffering you've endured for so very long. Still, you want to hold on until that last second, because every moment with them is precious. You'll know when to let go, Michelle. And when you do, you will take all that love with you, enfolding you like a warm blanket. God bless you on your journey; God be with your family as they bid you farewell. I pray for your physical comfort over the coming days as well as peace of mind for you and Bill. You are incredible. Thank you for sharing... all of this.
Jeanie

Rachel E. said...

Go in peace and with love surrounding you. Thanks for your extraordinary generosity in sharing this journey with all of us. I pray that you will be free of the pain and that your family will be able to live fully and love more deeply because of you. God bless you and my prayers continue.

Julieann said...

Oh, How I will miss you!!!

(((Gentle Hugs)))

Julieann

Stephenie said...

I don't know you, and am sorry that I don't. I can't begin to tell you how your blog has impacted my thoughts, and hopefully my actions. The world is a better place because you have shared your life with so many. Go in peace with God's speed. May he continue to hold your family in his arms...

marie said...

michelle,
I hope this isn't too strange, coming from someone you don't know over the internet... but I think you will understand.

I love you and I will miss you so much - please be at peace.

-Marie (in colorado)

Tracy said...

You've not only taken care of your family and prepared them, you've taken care of your readers in the same way. May your last days be full of love and peace. I will truly miss you. Thank you for sharing so much of yourself with all of us that have never had the pleasure of being in your physical presence. God Bless You and your Precious Family during this difficult time and the difficult days ahead.
Much love and peace to you,
Tracy (in Michigan)

premiumblendkari said...

I am praying for you and your family.
You are an incredible person, and I am so glad to have had the privilege to read about your life. Thank you so much for sharing everything. God will be with you every step of the way...never doubt.

God Bless You!
Kari

Sue R said...

Thank you for all you have shared. It's meant a lot to me, as one who lost a mother early. I was 9 when my mom died suddenly. From you, I feel like I've heard what she would have said and would have done if she'd known her life would be so short. It's been a gift to me.

I wish you the best in the coming days, and also your family.

Kerry Riggs said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Kerry Riggs said...

I certainly don't know you but your courage, foresight, love for your family and friends, and ability to write about your life's journey is incredible. I stumbled upon your blog - it was a link on a friend's blog.

I have worked in hospice and know how this time in someone's life can be so intimate and special. I also experienced this when I took care of my grandfather at the tender age of 24. At the time I worked in hospice by day and lived it at night. It was such a challenging time, but also one of the best experiences of my life to be able to share so much with him during his last months and days. I was with him when he told his best friend goodbye, wrote a final letter to his daughter/my mother, talked about his entire life and our wonderful times together.

Thank you for letting us into your intimate space during your journey. You have given so many wonderful "gifts" to your husband and children that will help to carry them through their own journey now and after you are gone. You have a wonderful way of allowing your spirit to transcend past, present and future with those whom you love the most and yourself.

God Bless you, your husband, children, and family. Thank you for your gift to all of us- to remember to cherish the little moments and the monumental ones as well. To say what we want to say and feel. Give freely to those we love or don't even know of our hearts, time, thoughts, hopes, dreams, fears, etc.

I pray for peace for you and your family.

Terri said...

Michelle, May God give you and your family the strength needed for the last leg of this journey. Just as the world will greatly miss your physical presence, so the heavens joyously await your arrival.
With love and prayers,
Terri and family

BurrRobson said...

I need to finish everything I wanted to do in regard to you, Michelle, and that is to say I am so fond of the you that has shared these last weeks with us. I will miss you when you are gone, and I wish I had your robe, too, to comfort me in the mornings.

Sometimes people come into your life only to leave again, but you always remember them and in some aspect they become a part of you. You will always be in my soul, Michelle. I will honor you in my own way here in Orygun by loving my children and reminding myself daily that I thank God for me being their mother.

Bless you. You have done everything I would want you to do, too, and that is to leave a mark on our world through the memories of your children, your husband, your friends and your family.

I am not a woman who is prone to emotional gushing, but were I at your bedside now, I would be holding your hand and laughing, crying and reminiscing with you.


Burr

Amber said...

Michelle,

I have never commented although I stumbled upon your blog about a month ago. Since that point I took the time to read each and every blog you posted. I have a lot of admiration and respect for you, being able to get a good idea of your strength and character from your prolific writing.

It cannot be easy, what you are going through, and yet you have taken the time to not only prepare yourself and your family, but to share your journey and memories with the rest of us. I know I am grateful for this generous gift you have given to all of us. We will all take your wisdom with us as we carry on with our journey through life, even after yours comes to an end. The fact that yours will end saddens me more than words can say, as you have become like another friend through your blog, but on the other hand, I do wish for you to be free of your suffering. You have made such a strong impact and opened my mind on several things, which I must thank you for.

I wish nothing but the best for your husband and children. I know things will be tough for them at first, but with how open and honest you have been with them, I feel that they will be able to overcome their grief and thrive, just as you wish for them. I also feel that you will be a lasting influence, no matter how much time passes between now and when their individual journeys come to an end.

Again, I want to say thank you and my thoughts and prayers are with you and yours throughout the coming days.

Much love,
Amber

stuartg said...

Michelle,

you have done so much work to make this world a better place for your family, your friends, and your community. you have struggled for so long. none of us wants you to suffer any longer. after your suffering ends, your good work will live on in your family and friends. it's been such a privilege to have been friends.

love and peace,
Karen & Stuart

Lana said...

Hello. I stumbled across your blog a few days ago, and have read all of your posts. What an honour to read your story. Thank you for sharing. God bless your family and you.
Lana.

Mothers heart said...

I feel so sad to hear how you are suffering.I truly wished you did not suffer so bad. Thank you for all the kind words and sharing your journey with us all. You will be missed by many and never forgotten. You have been a hereo to so many. I wish I could be there to hold you and comfort you. I will miss you and I will pray for you and your family to find peace. Please ask someone to let your internet friends know when you find your way home. God Bless you. I will miss you and like others I love you my friend.
Kim

sarahawl said...

Michelle,
As I'm sure many were, I was in tears as I read this post. I am also angry for what you are going through, especially the most recent weeks. I hope you know how amazing you are and how many of us you have touched-family, friends and strangers. I have been struck by the number of posts telling you how wonderful the idea of leaving the gifts for your kids is--truly it is remarkable and not many others would have thought of that! You have done so much, and perhaps not all you wanted to do in life, you have squeezed in more than most of us. Your posts--and you yourself--make me sit back on a daily basis and try to focus on what's important, because it's so easy to get caught up in other things. Thank you for being my friend and truly for having such an impact on my life (and through that, my kids' lives as well). I will miss you, but you will be with me (and all of us) forever. Right now I am wishing you peace and comfort-both you and your family. I love you...Sarah H

Amie said...

I've been dreading this the last few days, knowing how down you've been. I truly hate this disease for the suffering it causes and the seemingly random course it can take.

I hope you are at peace knowing not only all you've done for your family and friends but also for many others affected by scleroderma and dealing with chronic disease.

You never really did stop teaching, and we are all so grateful for it.

Terri said...

I am not the creator of this prayer calendar for Michelle but there's no better time to share....

chttp://freecal.brownbearsw.com/PrayersForMichelle

Linda Crispell said...

Dear Michelle,
Thank you.
love,
Linda

Hockeymom said...

Dear Michelle,

You don't know me but because of your beautiful blog I know you and I am grateful and honored. What an incredible person you are, it has truly been a blessing to get to know you.

What a job you were given here in this physical world. I wonder Michelle, if you realize in your oh too short time here, how many people you have touched, how many you have educated. Wife, Mother, Daughter, Sister, Friend, Cyber Friend, Teacher--Educator of us all. In your writings you talk about how one can be mothered by many. What an incredible mother you are to your children. What gifts you will be leaving them with. Not just the tangible ones you purchased, but also the spiritual, emotional and intellectual ones you will leave them with. What an incredible job you have done of "mothering" all of us. You also leave us with those spiritual, emotional and intellectual gifts as well. Yes Michelle your impact in this world has been large. Your job here has been huge. Job well done, so very well done--Bravo Michelle Bravo!

This world will be a better place because you were in it. You will leave behind your footprint (and I'm not referring to a "carbon" one) in many hearts and minds. You will live on through all of us because you were kind enough, brave enough, strong enough to allow us to share this most intimate of journeys with you and yours.

My thougths and prayers are with you, Bill, Amelia, Aidan, your family and friends daily. I wish all of you peace and strength in the journey ahead.

Go with God Michelle and May God Bless All Of You.

Lynn

AJ said...

Michelle,
You have given a special gift to so many people by sharing your life through your writings. Thank you so much for this gift! Now it is time to think about yourself.
You and your family will always be in my thoughts and prayers!
AJ

Sara G said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sara G said...

God Bless you and your entire family. This has to be the hardest journey of all. I am glad you got what you wanted to do done. Rest now. I will keep you and your family in my thoughts and prayers.

Moya K Dittmeier said...

Dear Michelle,

Susan just forwarded your blog to me. It seems like just yesterday that we were all in the English Center at NA, in Honors English class. I can see the scene so vividly in my mind's eye.

Teachers encounter many students during their careers...you are among the most memorable to me, and I can see that your courage and tenacity haven't wavered over these many years...and, you are now inspirational.

I want you to know that you are very much in my thoughts and prayers. I am praying for comfort for you, for your family.

Know that you are loved...Moya

Mom to 2 said...

You don't know me and I don't know how I found your blog one day. I just want to say thank you for sharing your writing. You have made such a huge impact on my life. I admire your courage and strength and I have a become a better person these past few weeks because of you! You and your family continue to be in my prayers.
Michelle

DawnF said...

Michelle:
You have shared so much with you blog. Thank you for sharing your life. Be at peace and know you are loved by many.

Dawn

Lori said...

Michelle,
This postis moving beyond any words. You have shared so much of you with all of us. You are a treasure we were all able to have for a brief time. My thoughts are with you all.

~Lori~

CathyB said...

Peace be with you, Michelle. As so many others have said, Thank You, Thank You for sharing your journey with us. Selfishly, I am going to miss you. However, I have grown to love you, and wish for your suffering to be over. May the remaining moments be peaceful, and may you soon experience the ultimate healing and the joy of being in God’s presence.

grace said...

Dear Michelle,
You are such an amazing woman - super intelligent, kind, gutsy, brave, loving, so many wonderul qualities. I said a prayer for you in synagogue yesterday. Thank you for your sharing of all your experiences and emotions.
Love and peace,
Grace

Ana's World said...

Peace be with you Michele and your family. I'm a better person because you chose to share your life. Your family will always be in my prayers and I'm looking forward to meeting you when I get to heaven. So, have some coffee ready and save a place for me at your table. I'll be there with a coffee cake and a smile. Love, Ana

Bohemian Bahamian said...

Thank you for sharing your journey. I hope your family takes some comfort in how much you thought of them and planned for them. How do you know when to let go, or does your body decide for you? I am so sorry you are suffering.

Becky said...

You are amazing how HE is using you the MOST amazing part.

Annie said...

aww michelle. i love you. simply.
xoxo

Chelsea said...

Michelle--

We're related in a very distant sort of way. I'm Dave's sister-in-law, married to Megan's older brother. I've been quietly following your blog for a few months. I've almost commented many times, but ultimately kept on as a quiet reader. Anyway, I had to thank you for sharing so much of yourself. Your posts always give me much to think about. It's hard for me to put into words what I've learned from your essays. I think constantly about how to create beautiful moments with my children, savor my relationship with my husband, form lasting traditions, appreciate where I've come from. Also, I've thought more about death. I believe it's just the next stage of life. Death is part of the cycle and each stage can be beautiful. You've certainly faced life and death head on and with grace and style.

Mostly, I simply wanted to say thank you.

I pray for you. May God continue to bless you and your family.

--Chelsea

Autenrieth Family said...

i dont know if you will read this, but i have to tell you....
This morning (friday am) i woke at 4:30am and couldn't fall back asleep... my mind was racing and all i could think about was you. I knew something was wrong, but i couldn't call bill, and i couldn't call mom.... i just knew, "something is wrong with michelle". I didn't think much more of it, until mom and ann called me this am to tell me the ambulance came at 3am....
it reminded me of that dream you told me about when i was staying with you in june- the one about your grandma visitiing you in your dreams, and the curtains which had to be 96"- that dream still puzzles me and i think about it often! Please come visit me in my dreams. I will miss you so much- your wise advice, gentle shoulder, and of course your courage to tell bill to stop saying the same jokes over and over and over. Your children and bill will be strong, and they wil be OK, we will all take care of them. May you find peace. lots of love, jane

Chip said...

Michelle,
The brief time we spent at the writers retreat in Virgina, our email exchanges, and your words from your blog will stay with me forever.
With Love,
Chip

Lisa (Myers) Hartsfield said...

I have been reading your blog for about a month. I saw it on AOL.

May you have much strength and peace. May you do this on your terms....

I will always cherish and make sure I tell my kids you "Laundry List".

terry said...

Dear Michelle, As one of your many friends who have never physically met you, I want to thank you and let you know that you and your family will remain always in my thoughts and prayers. Peace, Terry

abby'smom said...

I have been reading your blog for a few weeks now and after reading this post I made a post on a website that I belong to asking everyone to please pray for you and your family. I wanted to share this site with you...
www.unsolvedmysteries.com (not affiliated with the tv show)you can find the request for prayers for you under the "Prayers" section. Through your writing, which is beautiful by the way, I feel that I have actually experienced these memories with you. You have shown much strength in your journey...I cannot begin to imagine what you must be feeling now as your journey comes to an end...I hope and pray that the end is peaceful and beautiful as the angels carry you home. I will keep you and your family/friends in my thoughts and prayers.

cryan said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
cryan said...

You are quite possibly one of the most beautiful people I have ever "known".

Calling all angels to carry you home...

from,
one of many many cyber friends

MOM said...

Michelle,
Not sure if you are able to read these but praying you will be able to because they are filled with love. No one has faced death with more grace and dignity then you. You are truly an inspiration to all. Especially all you did in preserving photos of the kids. They will never stop looking at them, even when they are parents. What a wonderful gift to your children and Bill. My thoughts and prayers are with you. I wish I could be there to help, but know that I am there in spirit. I will never forget you. thank you for being such an inspiration.
Love, Mary Jean

Ellen said...

Michelle,

One never knows where they will find their next 'teacher'. Thank you for being mine. I will miss your presence here so much, and promise to take what you have taught me about life, love, and death, and carry it forward all the days of my life.

You have fought so long and hard, and I take great comfort in the fact that soon your spirit will be free to soar and your body restored to total health once again. Thank you for allowing us the opportunity to walk this part of the journey with you. When you are ready, let the love of your family and friends (and cyber family) gently lift you up and place you into the arms of the family you have waiting for you in spirit. Peace and love to you and your family as you travel to the heaven of your dreams!

oxox

Love to you,

Ellen

Bird Spot said...

Goodbye, Michelle, with love. You are my hero too.

crmson_lady said...

Michelle,
You do not know me. I am one of the numerous unknown people who read your blog daily. I have learned so much from you and will cherish those things as I continue on life's journey. You are an incredibly strong, talented, loving, caring person who will be greatly missed when the time comes to leave this place. Please know that you and your family are in my daily thoughts.

you can call me e said...

Hello.
Like lots of people I only know you throw your beautiful posts on this blog. You are an inspiration to me. I know you will be greatly missed when you are gone, but you will live on in many hearts.
May your fondest memories stay in your thoughts through these tough days.
God Bless.

Rebecca said...

Michelle,

Like everyone else I'm not sure that you'll ever read this. What I want to share with you is so important that I needed to post.

I have a friend. He knows me so well. He knows my heart. He knows my body. He knows my thoughts. He knows me better than I know myself. Yet, He loves me still, and asks for nothing in return for that flawless love.

I am sure you know about Jesus. I pray that you know Him intimately. I pray that through Him you are led to the One True God.

Jesus wants to be your friend. Just as all friendships go, we must surrender oursleves. We invest in important friendships. The return in this friendship investment is far greater than you can ever imagine. This friendship doesn't end when your life is over. In fact, it is just beginning then. Eternal love. Eternal joy. Eternal friendship.

None of us are perfect. We all have our flaws. We are sheep with blemishes. Jesus came so that he could wash away those blemishes and make us as white as snow. Why? Because of His immense love for each of us. For you.

I want you to know Him, Michelle. And the best part is that He wants you to know Him as well. He already knows you. He already loves you. With Him, you will never be alone. Not in your room, not in your thoughts, not in your death.

Please don't give up until you are certain that your eternal destination will be with Him. He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life. He is not only the road to happiness, but to complete and utter JOY!

I sincerely pray that you and your family will find comfort, joy and peace.

Rebecca

Mike said...

May all who read your blog take away a little bit of your exceptional wisdom and grace to apply in their day-to-day lives as an living tribute to you. Thank you....

esands said...

Dear Michelle,
You are so brave, strong, and loving to spend your time with "us". You are a true teacher.

As I told my baby I would now like to tell you, find your happy place dear and fly.

I know you will be out there for I know I hear from my baby all the time.
Please give her a hug from me as I asked her to give you one from me.

Michelle's family please know you are in my thoughts and prayers. And I hope you go easy on yourselves in the times to come. May you find some peace and comfort in knowing you are not alone even in the cyber world.

Love to you all, Elaine

boybandreject72 said...

Michelle,

Be at peace. After all your suffering, you deserve peace.

With much love,
Dan

Mrs. Jennifer said...

Hi,
Just want to share this out of love.
Whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved.
A- Admit you are a sinner. We all are.
B- Believe that Jesus died on the cross for our sins.
C- Confess that Jesus as your Lord
and Savior.
For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God.
For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life through Jesus Christ our Lord.
Ask Jesus to forgive you of your sin, He is faithful to forgive our sins and cleanse our hearts from all unrighteousness. If you pray this simple prayer, He will forgive you, and you will be in Heaven with Him, when you die.
In Christs Love
Mrs. Jennifer

griffin said...

Dear Michelle,

I am sending you all my love. You are in my heart, and I plan to hold you there always.

Lexi

farmerjulie said...

Michelle, you are a beautiful person..thank you for doing this. love and prayers for you and your family you blowing your way..
love, julie thomas

Cha Cha said...

Every post you write is a gift. We don't expect anything of you - you have already given so much. Find your peace, sweet friend.

Butterfly Believer said...

Today is your Anniversary. This has to be one of your favorite days in your short life.

You & your family have been on my mind & in my prayers non-stop. My hope is that your suffering ends today, and that it is peaceful and full of the love you felt on your wedding day.

Darby said...

Michelle,
It has been two days since your last post and I am struck by the coincidence of running into Amelia and Aidan today. They have such a bouyant spirit and a natural sparkle that, to my mind, can only be bolstered by all you have done with them and for them throughout this process. As a young daughter of a mother who died young, I know the confusion and pain Amelia and Aidan will feel as they continue to grieve. But so much of these past months you have given them will inevitably be healing and cherished memories that infuse them with clarity, closure and character. Your hand will always be felt upon their backs, Michelle.

Your mother's wish to have your bathrobe touched me deeply and I feel so fortunate to have the huge bunny towel you made my daughter, Sasha. I spend many evenings thinking of you as I wrap her up on my lap and squeeze her tight. It is a physical connection I will always have with you. With every gentle rub on my daughters skin, I will continue to recall your strength and wisdom as a guide for my own life as a mother.

Thank you for inspiring me to appreciate more of the small, quiet moments in my life and for the opportunity to learn so much from your life.

With love and sadness,
Darby Schenkel

Amy said...

Please know that I am holding you all so close in my heart and prayers. I've been reading for a few months now and your amazing gift to your family has touched my heart.

beki-lorraine said...

my thoughts, prayers and love are with you and your family.

each time you write we each feel the love you share for your family and friends, i know i am not the only one who is inspired by your words.

because of your posts i know that love is real and needs to be shared. thank you so much for that.

you are an inspiration.

once again you are all in my prayers.

stephen said...

Michelle is gone today, October 11, at approximately 3:15 PM. God bless you, my dear friend. Look down on us and smile!

Stephen

Tracy said...

My thoughts and prayers go out to Michelle's family at this difficult time. I'm so sorry to hear of her passing, but I'm happy that she's free from the body that failed her. Her spirit was luminous and she will shine brightly in heaven, although she will be sadly missed here on earth by so many...even those of us that never had the opportunity to meet her. God Bless her family...you'll be in my prayers.

~Tracy

Maggie said...

Michelle, you were such a precious angel. All of us who were blessed enough to come upon your diary are so grateful for the wisdom and strength we gained from your posts.
You were an invaluable gift to your family and an incredible gift to the world that will live on in your writings. Your strength and indefatigable spirit inspired me daily and gave me even more passion to share with my Hospice patients and families. You opened your heart and allowed us to be a part of such a sacred and tender journey and we were all HONORED to be with you, albeit in spirit. Bill, Amelia and Aidan, my heart goes out to you as you grieve the physical loss of your amazing wife/mom. Her brilliant spirit will give you strength and lighten your gloomy path. She gave us all reason to smile and be grateful, reason to sieze the moment and rejoice in our blessings. Michelle thank you for allowing us to be by your side on your difficult journey. I will miss you but your strength and spirit will always inspire me. Maggie

JC Heery said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you Bill, Ameila, Aidan, Mr. and Mrs. Mayer and all Michelle's family and friends. We were so blessed to have known Michelle in our lives and my heart is so heavy with sadness for you all. Thank you to Stephen for letting us know of Michelle's passing. I have been sitting around all day in prayer and I appreciate you letting us know. May God bless our dear friend Michelle and her family during this sad time.

Beth said...

Bill,

My prayers will be with you and your family during this difficult time. Your wife's diary was amazing to read. Your sister told me about it months ago, and I recently started reading it. You didn't have to meet Michelle to know what a beautiful person she was. May God richly bless you for being so faithful to her.

Terri said...

My heart is broken.

crmson_lady said...

My thoughts and prayers are with you at this time. My heart breaks to know Michelle has passed on, but now she is free from the pain and suffering. Rest in peace Michelle.

Holy Crappers said...

Michelle,

Thank you so very much for sharing this journey with us. You have been an inspiration to us all.

May you rest in peace.

Sista #2

Lisa (Myers) Hartsfield said...

And your cyber readers say...Amen.

Lori said...

Thank you Michelle. We grieve with Bill and your children and all those who loved you.

Lori Peterson
St. Louis, MO

Sabrina said...

May you now rest in peace sweet Michelle.
May your wonderful family be held in god's hand to endure this loss. You have given so much and will be remembered so well.

Donna said...

thank you Michelle. I have gotten so much from reading your journal. My husband was diagnosed almost 5 years ago with scleroderma and pulmonary fibrosis.There are many days that he barely can get out of bed, but yet he continues and pushes himself for me and our children. Through these readings i have learned to understand his pain and suffering that many days goes unspoken. I will always be grateful to you.God bless you.You are truly incredible and in our constant prayers

Kit Carson said...

Thank you for sharing your journey with us. You are an amazing and very brave person. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family tonight.

Cathy B.

Heidi said...

Michelle,
Thank you. For your words. For your feelings. God's grace be with you on your next adventure. It will be a brilliant one.
Truly,
Heidi

Hey Lady said...

How fitting that Michelle's last entry was titled "Homecoming". She is at Home, in her Mansion, with her Lord. I will so miss her. She was a true teacher to many more than she ever realized. God bless and rest her precious soul.

Terri said...

How true 'heylady'. "Homecoming" was perhaps her way to prepare us--the cyber friends-- just as she had done with her loved ones.
Rest in peace Michelle.
With love and prayers, Terri

desert dirt diva said...

I just read your last post, for which i am so mad at myself, because i looked the other day but i did not read an today your gone, and you can't read my last comment , so hopefully from the heavens you'll see this....it has been my pleasure everyday to open my page and go read you blog first...and if i don't comment on anyone eles page i do on yours...thank you for sharing your life and death with us all
love vicki

Butterfly Believer said...

Bill, Thank you so much for taking the time to write to us "cyber friends" today.

In spite of Michelle's terminal illness, she always considered her self very lucky. I trust that you realize how lucky you both were.

You've experienced more love in the 11 years of marriage than most people do in a long lifetime.

The love that you and Michelle shared cannot and will not ever die.

JwinstonE2267 said...

As a brief break from studying for a health policy test, I checked my email. In my inbox was an email from Dean Rimer informing the Global School of Public Health of your passing. After cramming notes for most of the afternoon, healthcare has a story and has a face.

Christina said...

Michelle, thank you for writing this down and providing this guidance and inspiration to those of us priveledged to read this. Amelia and Aidan are so lucky to have such memories of their amazing mother. My prayers will be with them, Bill and the many others that love you, as they go through this difficult time. Christina (UNC SPH)

Michelle said...

I have wept through reading this blog and everything before it. It is so sad to think of such a seemingly wonderful woman dying. I cannot imagine how I would handle knowing I would be dead after such a short life, yet alone realizing that fate soon after marriage. I feel for her children, her husband, her parents...everyone who knew her. All I can do is cry, and hope I get to meet this amazing woman on the other side someday.