Around Memorial Day the whole family was a little down. We were all looking back and remembering where we were two years ago. If you’ve been reading the blog, you know that Memorial Day of 2019 is when we found out Kramer, my husband, only had weeks to live. He ended up dying on June 2nd, so in all honesty, we had from Tuesday to Sunday in the wee hours of the morning.
What has been comforting to us all is seeing pictures. Sadly, most of the pictures we have of Kramer are from when he was sick. Here he’s cuddling Carver. You can see he has his “cough” pillow on his other side.
Here he’s holding Gannon, but it was from when he was sick. He was starting to not look as well.
Kramer HATED getting his picture taken. He would turn his head. He would yell at us. He would do most anything to avoid having his picture taken. Something happened when he got sick. Kalissa really pushed taking his picture and started snapping them even if he would grumble. Eventually he got better at it and let us take pictures. I’m so glad she did.
We now have lots of pictures of him sick…here at the end of radiation. He was about three weeks from dying.
Here’s a picture of us with Gannon. I had driven Kramer home from a hospital stay and we stopped on the way home to visit our new born grandson on the way home. You can see his hospital bracelet is still on.
There are many-many pictures of him sick…with cough pillows…pictures with feeding tubes and medicine bottles. We even had a photographer come just two days before he died to take family pictures. Kramer didn’t bulk about it one bit. I’m thankful we have them…
Here he is after his unsuccessful lung surgery.
But, I long for more pictures like the one below…Kramer in his element, not sick and doing the things he loved most. Here, he’s mowing hay.
Here he’s reading books to Scotty and Carver.
Here he is working in the garage.
Here him and I are at the Fireman’s breakfast working the ticket stand. I love these pictures.
I wish a million times over that we had more pictures of him. I wish we had casual pictures so we could remember him how he was. Instead we had pictures of him sick, hooked up to tubes and dependent on medicine. My heart longs to see him how I saw him day to day in his shirts with cut off sleeves…in pants that I had patched for him…working on a piece of furniture that is in my house to this day, but those are the pictures I really don’t have many of…no one has them because he wouldn’t allow them to be taken. The few I do have, he’s not looking at the camera…I can’t see those blue eyes that so many of our grandkids have. I wish I could.
Through all of this I’ve learned. TAKE THE PICTURE. Let you kids take your picture. Smile. Don’t worry about your double chin or your tummy that isn’t in shape. Just say cheese and hope for the best.
Because years from now when you’re no longer here, you don’t want to be remembered by the pictures that were taken of you when you are in the hospital…You don’t want to be remembered because you had a feeding tube, or a hospital bracelet, or finished radiation.
You’ll want to be remembered when you were strong, vibrant, and full of life. If you don’t take the pictures for yourself. Please take the pictures for your family…If you don’t one day years from now your family will be like we are, longing for pictures that showed the real you…double chin and all!!
Please, take the picture.