..last Saturday night with a handful of pills and an injection into his abdomen. I was not there with him. We discussed it at length. His medicine did not show up in time for him to be able to start it the weekend before...and I had been training for a horse show for months - which obviously and painfully for me, fell on this last weekend. Don was insistent about me going. I knew he had given himself shots the last time he took the treatment.. but I still wanted to be there with him. There is something very personal and sacred about it. I cannot explain that ..
We kept in constant contact over the phone. I spoke with him right after he had administered the shot and he said it was so unnatural... like throwing a dart at yourself! We both laughed. Don has a great sense of humor.
My last class was late Sunday afternoon. It took more time to get packed up and on the road, but we were on our way by 5:30PM. Shortly after we headed out, I spoke to Don. He sounded horrible.. groggy.. off balance.. and very very tired. I let him go and told him I would call when I was close to home.
Three hours later I called ... no answer. I called several more times within the next 30 minutes and still no answer. I could tell by the long beep of our machine that none of my messages had been retrieved either. I felt uncomfortable.
I rolled into the driveway around 9:20PM. The gate was closed. No extra outside lights were on. I pulled the truck and horse trailer into our drive and got out, leaving the horses in the trailer, to go and check on Don. I opened our front door and was met by the stench of a cat liter box that needed cleaning badly. I then noticed that the dogs, who had just raced out the door between my legs, had had an accident on the floor.
I did not remove my boots. I dropped my keys on the ledge and ran to the back of the house. Don was laying there with the phone right beside his head. He looked very ill. I leaned down over him and (I won't lie) I was relieved to feel his breath on my face. I touched his chest and said his name. Raising my voice, I again said his name. He only slightly opened his eyes to meet mine without saying a word.
"Are you okay?" I asked.
Nodding he said,"Every muscle and bone in my body aches Julie. I forgot how horrible this medicine really is."
He slowly rose up into a sitting position. I sat beside him for a few minutes and told him how scared I was.
It is going to be a long year. Please remember Don in your prayers.