Thursday, February 21, 2019
Thursday, February 21, 2019:
D2/MK: We had been invited to attend this month’s MLS training meeting, so we arrived before ten. We were greeted warmly by the Parkers, Winders and Murphys and sat with the Larsons and enjoyed a spiritual meeting. Several new couples were introduced and our name was on the list of recently released. A new position in the mission leadership is a liason brother (I don’t know if he has an official title) between the mission and the high councilmen over missionary work in the 71 stakes in the mission. He is Pres. Lindley (former mission president of the England Leeds Mission). He and Sister Lindley were excellent speakers! We can picture him being a hit with Bro. Pontes and others! Pres. Calhoon is an excellent speaker, too, and added to the spirit of the meeting. Then Sister Lansing rushed in and told us that President was interviewing the departing missionaries and would have to miss our meeting. She went on to teach from the Joseph Smith History (emphasizing the important minor “changes” in each of 4 accounts given by the prophet. We love her.
In our break-out session, Sister Doyle and I were invited to share our testimonies, standing at our seats. Sister Doyle did a beautiful job and brought tears to my eyes. I stood up, and made reference to what had been said by her and bore my own testimony without mentioning MLS examples. Sister Doyle felt it was perfect for the occasion. After so training, we were excused to enjoy a delicious lunch – Sisters Parker and McAlister had set up 4 tables for us all to be able to sit and eat comfortably…a great improvement to using our laps! There were clam chowder and enchila soups, homemade breads, fruit and veggie trays, strawberry shortcake and jam cookies. What a feast! It was really nice – our goodbyes to Murphys and Winders included plans to get together socially once their missions were finished.
Roger called and asked if we wanted to go to the BYU/San Francisco basketball game. Mom said no but encouraged me to go. I think Roger wanted a friend, plus I haven’t been to a game in years, so I said yes. He invited our grandkids, too, but they were all busy elsewhere. At 4:30 he and daughter Angie, son-in-law Kyle and grandson Nixon Gerrie (visiting from Canada) picked me up and headed down Provo way.
The Marriott Center parking was almost all reserved, so I suggested we park in the WilkinsonCenter parking lot. They wanted to visit the bookstore anyway, so it made sense. They shopped for various BYU items, then we walked to the Marriott Center. We met up with baby brother Steve and his girlfriend Sami.
I was surprised at the atmosphere --it was less a basketball game than an extravagant spectacle of loud music and lights. I didn't care for it. I loved the excitement of games in times past!
At one point, I looked up at the giant screen and about screamed when I saw Dallin and friends cheering! I texted Angie and the next thing I know, I got a text from Dallin, asking me where I was sitting. I told him and he came to visit during halftime to say hi and give me a hug. It was a pretty good game until the end when the Cougars came apart and lost a 15-point lead. We walked with heavy hearts back to our car. I checked my phone on a whim and saw that we had walked two miles! From there, we went to see son Johnny's condo in Vineyard. Steven lives there, too, at present. It is large, new, clean but mostly bare of furnishings. It was snowing when we left, but it cleared up as we traveled north. I was glad to get back to the comfort and warmth of our own home! Mary waited up for me.
She had been busy, though – at 6:00 she drove across the street to leave the folded towels and announce to Oliver that she was there for him to load up his and Lincoln’s scout camp stuff – bags, pads, chairs etc. We went to drop it off at Rod Draper’s house on Aster. Conor Morrison was there with his mom. Emily is watching Marjorie’s youngest while Marjorie & Tyler are visiting London with Clark & Ellen! Oliver stayed with Drapers – when all those 12 and older got there, they would be taken to Mike Ramsey’s to go to register for fishing licenses. At 7:00 MK picked up Lincoln from his indoor soccer practice. Nixon was with his mom at the hospital visiting John! We’ll go tomorrow.
Wednesday, February 20, 2019
Wednesday, February 20, 2019: MK has nails done, shops / John’s surgery long but good / D2 has C-T scan of lungs
D2/MK: I, Mary, made a 9:30 appointment to have a fill and pedicure and left in a freezing cold wind, wearing flip flops for the pedicure. Anna’s husband, John, did my fill first and asked about Lauren. I told him of her newsy email describing the excitement of TET. He was very animated as he shared his own memories of the TET season when he was growing up – it has been 27 years since he left. It was the most thrilling time of every year – the loving feelings of the people for one another, the yellow and purple flowers were in abundance and just out during the TET season. The food was always special, too. I felt sad realizing that he will never go back.
While getting my pedicure with Sammi, I was in a quandary at how to advise her regarding a situation of her sweet, shy friend also from Vietnam and attending classes with her at SLCC. On the snowy morning (Tuesday), her car slid after her stop and in slow-motion, “met” the car in front of her. Both she and the other driver took a photo of the one-inch scratch – (she showed it to me on her phone--as thick as that dash). The woman has since sent the young girl (via email) a bill for $600+ (without a business letterhead). Sammi is just sick about the whole affair, fearing the woman is seeking to make money on the incident and being unkind and unfair. The two girls have mid-terms and she is concerned her friend will be adversely affected by her stress over the money, which she doesn’t have. I suggested she not respond to the email and see what the woman does next and hopefully my prayers will be answered – that her heart will be softened, and she will let it go.
After my finger and toenails were done and paid for, I walk through the store until I had much in my cart, then went home…12:30.
The elders texted me that they needed a ride to Elder Butikofer’s place for exchanges. I said yes, knowing that Sister Doyle would be back in plenty of time. Around 12:30, however, I got a little nervous. I was relieved when she showed up and was able to get them together for exchanges.
After dropping them off back here, I went to Café Rio for my lunch. I had a sweet pork burrito with extra meat, using my gift card left over from Christmas. Thanks guys! I saw Brent and Mary Hutchings there. He was in our mission many years ago and we’ve kept in touch ever since. They were very concerned about my condition, limping and using oxygen and such. I told them that I was concerned, too! The two of them are considering the options for a senior couple mission.
I ate half my burrito and brought the rest home for tomorrow. Mary washed and folded a batch of towels for Aubs and washed and put away our dishes in the dishwasher.
I returned home long enough to bring in the two gallons of bleach from the car and get myself a drink of water, then hopped back into the car and headed for Alta View for my C-T scan. Jodi remembered me from my last one and ran me through the same procedure. She will send it to Dr. Hardman who will call and probably tell me “nothing has changed.” I guess that’s better than “things look worse.”
Aubs kept us apprised of John’s condition during the operation and it appears to have gone well. He will have a colostomy bag for six months, after which they will open him up again and reattach the bowel sections. He is in a lot of pain but with the pain meds, he is groggy and quiet.
Tuesday, February 19, 2019
Tuesday, February 19, 2019: D2 drives elders, visits John at hospital, exchanges shoes, gets haircut / laundry done / D2 & Matt give John a blessing
D2/MK: I picked up the elders at 9:50 and drove them to their district council meeting. They said they would need a ride back at 12:30, so I told them I would be there. From there, I headed out to St. Mark’s Hospital. John was glad to see me and his charger cord. He hates the TV, but he can play movies on his phone.
Dr. Murday came in and I was impressed with her. She was well-dressed and looked very chic. She was very good in her explanations of everything and I felt very confident in her abilities. She is expecting a lot of bad stuff and John may need a “coloscopy bag” for six months or so, at which time, she will go back in and repair the perforation and bring everything back to normal.
I left the hospital, hopped on the freeway and sped out to Costco, where I exchanged my running shoes for the right size. It took some effort to get around, so I propped myself up on a cart and didn’t do any extraneous wandering. I picked up the elders with minutes to spare.
When I came home, I found Mom organizing and folding clothes for Aubs and family. I made myself a couple of hot dogs and relaxed before taking off to get my haircut at the barber school. Curtis was my barber and did a pretty good job. He wasn’t very gentle though, but hopefully, he will get more gentle with more experience.
When I got home, Mom was in front of the TV, folding clothes from across the street. They filled up two large baskets. I went upstairs and took a long, hot shower. It was very refreshing. MK put the bandages on my wounds, and I got dressed. After that, we took one basket over and put it on the bed for Aubs – out of the way from Truman. While I went back for the second laundry basket, Mom tidied up the kitchen and washed the dishes. It’s in her genes. Truman was happy to have me scratch his belly and was rather calm while we were there.
I sent out a text message to the family, asking who was available to go to the hospital with me to give John a blessing. Matt replied that he was and came over to the house at 7:30. Aubrey and Mary Kaye came with us. When we arrived, both Tim Collinson and Steve Morrison were with John. We all visited for a while, then Matt anointed, and I gave the blessing with John’s two counselors standing in. We all feel comfortable about the up-coming surgery.
At 9:00, Pres. Monson arrived and got caught up on the plans for John. There was a great positive spirit in the room. He recognized Matt as a brother and remarked that he had no facial hair – Matt replied that he had had the scruff earlier in the day but had shaved for the priesthood blessing. Sweet. John was having a hard time drinking the gallon of nasty “lemonade” before midnight. We all left him alone at 9:30.