Karl’s HOME!!

When Karl went to Texas to teach this fall, everything here was seemingly normal.  Then I have my return cancer scare in November.  Karl offered to come home.  I said no…come at Thanksgiving, and he did.

Karl was again home at Christmas…again, everything was seemingly back to normal.  Then at the end of January, when Kramer was diagnosed with cancer, Karl said he was coming home.  I said no.  We don’t know anything yet.  Stay.  I promised him then that if anything went bad and it was time for him to come home, I would tell him.  It was a pact we made.

Karl had to sign his contract to teach in the fall and he decided that with things the way they were that he’d be best finding something here in the fall instead.

Karl was home at Spring break.  Kramer was doing pretty good then.  Kramer and I had a long talk with Karl and told him that we didn’t want him to put his life on hold for us.  If he wanted to be in Texas, we wanted him to stay there.  With our blessing, Karl went back and talked to his principal saying he was still interested in a fall job.

As things slowly got worse with Kramer Karl would often call and offer to come home.  I’d always put him off saying, “Karl, remember our pact?  I promise I’ll call you and tell you when it’s time to come home.”

Well as the time progressed the call to come home to Iowa was more and more in Karl’s ear and about three weeks ago Karl made the decision that he wanted to be home in Iowa.  He’d finish up the school year and then be home.  It’s all kind of scary….he has to leave a job to no job and it’s late in the teaching world to find a job for fall.  With all that in place, Karl decided home was the first priority, a job would come…

For the last month we’ve been talking and making plans…he was coming this day and we were going to do this or that.

Well Tuesday after the PET scan and learning the results, Kramer and I called the kids and told them one by one.  Some we made the decision to wait until they were done with work.  The kids might as well finish the day without all of this bringing them down.

So about 3:45pm I waited as long as I could.  Kramer was sleeping so I made the call myself.  I said, “Karl, remember our pact?”  He said, “Yes.”  I said, “Well Karl, it’s time to come home.”

We talked some more.  I asked Karl when he was done with the school year and how we could help him.  Karl’s reply was quick.  He said, “Today was my last day.”  I knew he wasn’t telling the truth.

After some phone calls to his principal and talks with me, we decided it was okay to end the school year early and come.  He was supposed to be done next Tuesday.  He quit a week early to come home.

In the end, I think it was the right decision.  We have no idea how long Kramer will be able to visit, to make decisions, to say good-bye….I don’t want Karl to miss any of that.

…and so, it’s with sad words that I say, I kept my pact.  My boy is home!

46 thoughts on “Karl’s HOME!!

  1. Donna

    Jo, Not that my opinion matters but I think you did the right thing for Karl. for Kramer, for you and for the other kids. You need to be a strong unit. Also Karl would want the time with his Dad. A job will come but time with the family is more important now. Oh how I hate all this is happening but God has a plan and will give you all strength. Treasure the time you have as a strong, loving family and lean on each other. Stay Kramer strong.

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  2. Candi

    Yep time for Karl to come home.

    I’m praying for Karl to get a job local.

    Love, hugs and prayers coming your way.

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  3. Lisa B

    I’m sorry your family is going through this. I’m glad Karl made it home safe. I love how practical your family is referring to the pact with Karl, or at least that’s the way you make it appear in your blog writings, in spite of the emotional turmoil that’s going on in your home. I spent some time this afternoon looking at some of your old blog postings. deleting ads and praying for all of you. Hugs.

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  4. Sally

    It’s amazing what you can do when you have to. I pray that this time for your family includes celebration, reflection, and lots and lots of love. Those precious little children will often prove to be a God send, each in their own way. Savor each day the best you can. Take care. And drive safe.

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  5. Donna Weeks

    You have a wonderful bond with your children and that is the ultimate blessing. You and Kramer raised them to know that family comes first. Time is precious and will give everyone memories to las a lifetime. I pray that you and your family will find comfort in knowing that there are so many praying for you. Share wonderful stories with each other, and know that prayers for comfort and strength are said for your entire family every day.

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  6. Donna

    Bringing Karl home was a good decision. Family together at times like this is the best decision that could have been made. You’ll be be able to hold each other up, laugh, cry, love each other.
    Love and prayers to you all.

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  7. Robby

    Tough call, but Karl made the right decision with all that is going on. And if Karl’s principal was a true leader, s/he helped Karl see what he couldn’t miss in Iowa. My parents taught for 30 years. There will be a job for Karl in Iowa, there always is a spot for a good teacher. Embrace your time together, all you Kramers.

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  8. Debbie B

    I’m so glad Karl made it home and I think it was a good decision. Family first especially in these circumstances. You all need time to be together. I see lots of tears, stories, smiles, laughs, jokes and tons of hugs at the Kramer house. Wishing Peace and comfort upon the Kramer home.

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  9. Donna T

    Glad Karl made it home. He made the right decision. There will always be another job but he only has one dad.

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  10. Linette

    God has blessed you with wonderful children and grandchildren! Praying this time will be very special for all of you.

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  11. Deb W

    Jo, your family has constantly been in my prayers. My heart is hurting for all of you. Glad Karl made the decision to come home. Fyi, Muscatine is looking for 5 elementary school teachers. A few hours away but still in Iowa. Love to you all

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  12. Karen Hough

    I’m so glad your whole family will now be together. God has a way of knowing when the time is right. Karl was there to teach up until one week before the end of school. Now he is home where he needs to be. My heart & prayers are with you and your whole family. I was so sad when I read your blog about the PET scan results. Be together and cherish this time for however long it may be. Only God knows what is in store. Sending you all my love ,&.

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  13. Lori Sparks Douglas

    Glad you are all together! Enjoy your time. Karl is the one with a wicked sense of humor, right? What comical relief he will bring. There is a poem ” I wish you enough”. Always makes me tear up but it is so true to live life to the fullest! I pray for you all daily! Savor your time together… be present in the present. Drive safely Kramers!

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  14. Samantha

    I’ve only been following your blog for the past couple of months but wanted to say how sorry I am for the difficult time you and your family are having, and what an amazing, strong and loving family you are. Sending you all love and hugs from the UK xx

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  15. paula dalby

    Jo, every time I read one of these, I just sob. My heart aches for you and your beautiful family. I know we don’t really “know” each other, but I’ve been reading your blog so long, I just feel like I’m part of your life. I know I am not, but please know that you and your family are definitely part of MY life and I care about each and every one of you.
    There’s not much I can do from way out here in Utah except send love, but please know I am sending Lots and Lots of it each and every day.

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  16. Sheila

    Prayers continue… for grace and strength to meet each day… for your family… but especially for Kramer!
    Love and prayers!

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  17. Deb W

    Jo, your family has constantly been in my prayers. My heart is hurting for all of you. Glad Karl made the decision to come home. FYI-Muscatine has openings for 5 elementary teachers. It’s a couple of hours away, but at least still in Iowa!

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  18. Maxine

    Please know that God has His arms wrapped around the entire Kramer family. What ever is needed He will provide for each Kramer. Eventually, there will be one less at the earthly table, but there will be a new important member at the Heavenly table. God will bless each of you in the way that you need blessed!

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  19. Roxanne

    I’ve been waiting to hear about Karl getting home. I’m glad it worked out with his principal and school—bless them. It will give Roger a lot of peace, and all of you will be even stronger together. I’m holding each Kramer in my heart and sending prayers and love.

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  20. pam

    Jo, you are all in my thoughts. I know you only made the call when you had to. I’m hoping for peace for all of you.

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  21. Katherine Gourley

    Jo, you made all of the right decisions. Family is the most important — I am praying for all of you.

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  22. Penny Holliday

    Yes the timing was right now! Karl & Kramer need to see each other at this time! Karl needs to be here with his family to surround Kramer with love! Keeping the Kramers in my prayers & sending hugs to all of you!

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  23. Stoney Monte

    Jo-So glad to know that all the Kramer kids are home now. The trip home from Texas was always a worry for you, knowing that Karl was driving a long ways, all alone. But he’s home now and it’s time for you to let go of all of us and hold tight to each other.
    You said SERIOUSLY that I should let you know if there were any fabrics I could use for my donation quilts and I said PROMISE that I would check. I did sort for 90 minutes this morning and I would be able to use blues of any kind. It seems as though I see the need for and make more men’s quilts and my blues get used up quickly. There is absolutely NO RUSH on this. When you get back to sorting and sharing fabric, think of me when you see some blues. Til then, Stoney

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  24. Robin Boggan

    Jo I’m so glad that Karl made it home and you can all be together. You and your family are in my prayers! Hugs to you all.

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  25. The Joyful Quilter

    Rest assured that Karl is glad you made that call, Jo. It will give him time to be with his Dad during the time Kramer has left. That is MUCH more important than the week of school remaining for the year!!

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  26. Tonya Reichard

    So sorry to read that H has arrived in your life. So glad that Karl made it home. Please know that we are all with you in thoughts and prayers!! Keep your family unit together as much as possible and I know you all will treasure those moments and memories being made. Take loads of pictures, especially for those cute little grand kids; they will cherish them and so will you. God Bless you all as you travel this next journey of life. I will stop rambling…..prayers and hugs!

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  27. Colleen

    Continued prayers for everyone. So relieved to know you’re all right where you need to be…home!

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  28. Beth T.

    Oh, Jo. The words I try to live by are, “Do what matters most”, when it comes to making decisions, prioritizing, planning my day, etc. Seems as if Karl and his principal did just that. Time together is what matters most. And it’s amazing that as paradoxical as it may be, hospice time can really be good time, when you’re done chasing after something elusive, done with the stress of so many treatments, and are just focused on being together and making memories and reminiscing, and you have the support of so many good people. Hospice nurses are in a league of their own. Sending much love.

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  29. Shirley

    It is so important for all of you to have this time together. Karl would have been miserable alone in Texas knowing how much he was needed at home. Continued prayers for your family.

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  30. Susan the Farm Quilter

    I’m so glad Karl is home. I know he is an essential part of your family…to make the unit whole now. Enjoy spending time together and making those precious memories. Praying for the right job for Karl, to keep him close to home!

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  31. Jonnie

    Jo, my heart breaks for you and the situation you are in. But I am so thankful you have your loving family close, and I know your strong spirit will lead you in this difficult journey. Prayers continue from South Carolina.

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  32. Sharon Hughson

    You and your family are such an inspiration to the rest of us and you will never know how far that extends. I love how honest you are in your posts. I love the family love that seeps out with every entry. I thought my family was great and they are but in different ways than yours. Keep being yourself, Jo. You are an inspiration to all of us watching your family in every situation. Thanks for sharing such personal experiences.

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  33. Donna F

    God Bless your family. There will be a job for Karl near you in the Fall. maybe as a sub but he will be close to help you as needed.

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  34. Tami

    Oh boy, I’m so sorry that you had to go through this. But I can say (having been through this exact thing with my husband just this past month) that I’m very happy that you and your beloved were able to have some time to say goodbye together .. that you were able to have your family and friends surround you two with love at the end. The couch burning story was perfect! Such a great way to celebrate your love together. Hugs from a stranger, but also a quilter and new widow. Remember that you are never alone. :-)

    Reply
  35. Jeanine

    I have been in MN for a couple days for my brother-in-laws funeral. I am so sorry for what is happening in your life just now. My eyes filled with tears reading your previous post. I have been praying for you and Kramer, and will continue to keep you and your family in my prayers.

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  36. Diana

    I have been with you through all of this with your blogs. I feel sad and have tears for you and the family. I feel like you are a sister to, as I have kept you close to my heart in your journey through all of this. I am so glad all your family are together at this time. God Bless You All. Take Care Sweetheart.

    Reply

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