Tuesday, May 24, 2011

24th May

How can I possibly put into a few words even the smallest part of how I feel today? I’ve tried hard to ensure all who are really close to Jane already know but now I am so sorry to have to say that after a tortuous battle for life over the past 4 years my precious Jane has at last found rest in the arms of her true Saviour… the Lord Jesus Christ. He alone can rescue, he alone can save and he alone has lifted her from the grave. I know that right now she is with him and the saints who’ve gone before and that one day, in God’s time we shall be reunited.

I don’t pretend to understand God’s ways but I do know that he has given me an absolutely wonderful partner to be my wife and I am so very grateful for the happiness she gave me every single day for nearly 40 years. And I know that that is far more than so many others are privileged to enjoy in their lives. I have been blessed so completely and so much more than I deserve. So many others say how special Jane is and don’t I know it having enjoyed her complete and devoted attention as her husband making my life so very complete in many, many ways.

She passed away so very bravely, still without a single complaint, still forcing a smile and a weak thank you for everything done for her. She maintained her personal dignity and intrinsic peace to the last despite an impossibly difficult weekend. Yesterday afternoon as she had to be temporarily moved into another room whilst her bed was being assembled she grabbed her perfume from a shelf and sprayed herself with it’s fragrance. One of my daughters began to cry and out came the comforting arm of mother. Another time I was blessed in exactly the same way. Late night as some drugs wore off she really struggled to breathe and continually asked for more medicine. We had a trained nurse with us all through the night and she was able to give an injection to try and help Jane relax and be comfortable. It didn’t succeed. A repeat soon after with a higher dose also had no effect. And then the nurse had to very carefully ask permission before another and final dose. She explained that sometimes this extreme medication caused a patient to relax so much that they gave up the fight and passed on. We agreed as Jane was so agitated and asking for help. It had no effect and she continued to be in difficulty with anxiety.

The nurse needed a lengthy conversation with a doctor who we’d met the night before and a suggestion of a different drug was made and administered. Jane relaxed and gratefully slept soon afterwards. This was around 1am. Being so exhausted I returned to my bedroom to try and rest leaving my eldest daughter to look after Jane with the nurse as her companion. My daughter later said how marvellous a companion this nurse was as they talked and cried their way through the long night hours. Jane did not wake up again and remained completely peaceful until around 10am. The nurse had gone home after her 9 hour shift so we were briefly alone with all our four children come to be with Jane. She very gradually slowed her breathing until it stopped and seemed to drift off so gracefully to be with the Lord. What a special moment that was. He is so good to us and I love him more and more for looking after us. There is no easy answer as to why the Lord allows suffering and premature death but I’m so very grateful for his presence at such a time.

Luke 23:43 ‘And Jesus replied, “I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise.”’ (NLT)

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