Monday, October 7, 2019

The Composition of Grief

The days pass, this week would have seen my sister, Margaret turn 72.

Today grief is knots, loose threads, lumps and bumps, unfinished sentences, thoughts and tears.

Mostly, I am in a daze.

Music, nature and the love around me, soothes my soul.

This is all many times harder for my sweet nieces...….and for my brother's wife......time is not making it easier.

Monday, September 9, 2019

4.5 Months - Then there were 5.

When I last wrote in mid-April, the greatest fear I noted, was that Ev's acute myeloid leukemia could come roaring back and take him from us.  The call came Friday, May 24, "Come as soon as you can, Ev is in critical condition, back in the hospital."  Within 4 hours, I was in the air to Baltimore.  Sister-in-law, Jenni met me and we were off to Johns Hopkins.  Ev's eyes opened briefly, seeming to acknowledge my presence, we sat by his side for a day and a half, and he left us on Sunday, May 26 at 1 pm.  The first of the Morse siblings was gone!

Everett Abraham Morse III, of Baltimore MD, passed away at Johns Hopkins Hospital, on Sunday, May 26, 2019, after a courageous battle with acute myeloid leukemia.

DOB: January 4, 1951

Place of Birth: Hanover, Massachusetts, son of the late Everett A. Morse and Eleanor B. (Murphy) Morse.
Graduate of Hanover High School, Hanover, MA 1968.
A graduate of The Thompson School at the University of New Hampshire,
and The University of Maryland at College Park in Horticulture.
Veteran USAF 1971-1974

Husband of Jennifer B. Morse, father of Martin E. Morse
of Baltimore

Besides his wife and son, Everett is survived by sisters and brothers: Marcia L. Morse of Sagamore
Beach, MA, Susan K. Wienczkowski, of Lafayette, CO, Margaret E. Anglin, Waterloo, Ontario, Canada, Martin I. Morse (Karen)of Savoy, IL, Eleanor M. Haskell (Stephen) of Poulsbo, WA, and Samuel A. Morse (Trish) of Cohasset, MA ,and, many beloved nieces, nephews, and friends.
Everett worked in the building supply business most recently with Colonial Sash and Door in Frederick, MD, and Aeroseal Corp in Jessup, MD

An avid lover of, hiking, and nature, Everett was often found on the trails of Patapsco State Park with his son, Martin and his beloved dog, Tiger. He took immense pleasure in baking and cooking for his family and friends, and fostered many a treasured friendship with gifts of his delicious breads, soups and cookies, pies, etc. Gardening, woodworking, and reading, as well as, travel to many beautiful places throughout the US, brought Everett great pleasure.

Ev's frequent trips “home” to MA and Cape Cod to visit family, meant walks on Lighthouse Beach in Chatham, and along the Cape Cod Canal, and making beautiful seafood meals with sisters and brothers, leaving them with wonderful memories and stories told with his wickedly- wry sense of humor.

On Thursday, June 6, we held a memorial gathering, and I stayed to be with Jenni and son, Martin, until June 12.  It was a terrible feeling to leave them, but home I came to begin healing, and pick up my life.
During my time in Baltimore, the family learned that my sister, Margaret, had fallen and was in hospital with a fractured pelvis.  Subsequently, she moved to a rehab facility and was slowly and painfully, making a recovery, with her dear daughters by her side. While undergoing rehab for her injury, it was decided that Margaret should have an MRI to explore why she fell, and to look at progress of her MS.  After an interminable wait for results, on Friday June 14, I received a phone call to say the MRI had revealed that Margaret had Stage 4 lung cancer which had metastasized to her brain, liver and spine.  This explained why the frequent falls were occurring, but it also presented a very grave diagnosis.  Our courageous, beautiful sister, had very little time left.  As she did everything in her life, Margaret, faced this all with grace and dignity, with her daughters and son around her.  We quickly pulled together a reunion of the siblings and spent some very meaningful time with Margaret in early August.  There was our usual strong love, laughter, sharing of stories, and poignant moments threaded through this precious time, to sustain us through this painful time of loss.. Our youngest brother, Sam, and his wife, Trish, were able to visit, as well.

Follow the link below to the beautiful obituary written by Margaret's lovely daughters Ellie and Emmy

Margaret Obituary

 Love prevails here, even as it feels like deep grief, we move forward, carrying all that Ev and Margaret stood for in our hearts always. Brothers, Marty and Sam, and sisters Susan (Bebo) and Eleanor. Our close contact throughout all this time, has saved me, over and over. I love you all so much.  Many cousins, friends and neighbors have been so very kind and thoughtful, too.

I am deeply grateful for the help of my immediate family,  and the generosity extended to me, to make it possible to be with Ev and family, and especially to my brother-in-law, Stephen Haskell and sister-in-law, Trish.  Your immediate help, love and caring sustained me in so many ways.


Wednesday, April 10, 2019

The Sun

I do admit, first off, that 4 days of cold, dark and sometimes rainy days, befitted my mood this week!  Just now some rays of sun have broken through, and I physically felt the uplifting effects with sheer gratitude.

I have just come back from a second 2+ weeks of time spent with my brother, Ev and his wife in Baltimore.  This second trip brought me home with new hope that we may see the possibility of remission  Acute Myeloid Leukemia is a force to be reckoned with, and we are so blessed to have an amazing team at Johns Hopkins Hospital and Research Center in out corner.  Currently, Ev is stronger than he has been in awhile.  He has continued on chemo, while receiving many infusions of platelets and red blood cells to keep him strong enough to endure what lies ahead.  Monday saw the beginning of a 28 day protocol of 2 chemos and infusions. This will be followed up, hopefully, by radiation, and culminate in a bone marrow transplant.  Ev is now able to drive himself to and from the hospital, which is a great relief for wife, Jenni. My time was spent helping with driving, cooking, shopping, and just general support to keep their lives afloat during this tense time.  At any given moment the leukemia could blast its way through the effects of the treatment and end the progress. So far, so good. We are bolstered everyday by the amazing support, and love from friends and family, and most of all, by Ev's ability to remain very positive, that this will all work, to bring him into a full  and vibrant life ahead.

Meanwhile, it was lovely to be south of here where Spring was bursting forth with green leaves and cherry blossoms!
 Cheerful Daffodil faces from Ev and Jenni's garden
 Ev's, Ms Lucy caught in a yawn!
 A lovely sweater was being knit during my visit....mohair.
 Johns Hopkins hospital alit with cherry blossoms
 JH cherry blossoms

 Cherry blossoms in Druid Hill Park, Baltimore on Ev's first day of driving.
Druid Hill Park
Coming home to the brownness of Winter still clinging, added to the doldrums and sadness of leaving Ev, but I came home to loving arms and lots of purring.  My beloved LM was waiting at the airport for me to fall in to his longed-for arms, and he delivered me safely home to my waiting Jason, Alison and Teddy!! I missed them all so much.
 Just off the plane in Providence, LM and I enjoyed a lovely and delicious evening at 
Turk's Seafood Restaurant in Mattapoisett, MA on the way home. There may or may not have been some Makers Mark consumed. 
 Baked scrod perfection
 Fried clams and sea scallops. Dreamy!
….and when I finally got into bed, this darling boy was waiting to cuddle his Nana. Sweetness!

Taking a walk through our garden, looking closely, I can see the earth bringing the promise of great beauty.  On Ev's last visit here in June of 2018, he brought, from his amazing garden, a lilac sapling, and a large tree peony, already living in his rich mulch, and I was thrilled to see them with new life this week.  Renewal!!

Teddy is having a great 4th grade, and is reveling in being chosen to sing a solo and portray Aladdin in a coming All Star Revue event. We are busy with voice lessons and rehearsals for the next 2 months.

The sun is now intermittent, as will be emotions in the coming months, and we hold strong to our underpinnings from nature and faith to buoy us on the journey.

Stay tuned for more photos from my time in Baltimore.....

Scatter love and  smiles as you go!!💚

Thursday, February 7, 2019

Falling off the Grid

Two weeks ago, Baltimore, MD called me to the bedside of my beloved brother, Everett. He is gravely ill with 3 forms of blood cancer. A combination so rare that treatment possibilities are almost unknown. Johns Hopkins Weinberg Pavillion is treating him with a combination of aggressive chemos, to be followed, hopefully by a bone marrow transplant. I am here with his wife, Jenni, and son, Martin,  and we are holding down the fort, as their life has been thrown into a completely new form.
Ev will be remaining in the hospital through the completion of treatment.  His treatment falls within a a clinical trial which, I believe was pioneered at Sloan Kettering in NY. It is a last ditch effort. Each day finds Jenni and I driving almost a half hour into downtown Baltimore, and checking in to the hospital, where we have to wear masks, at all times.  Johns Hopkins is an amazing institution and surely on the cutting edge of cancer treatment and many other diseases, as well. We stay with Ev for a few hours, then leave to pick up the pieces of our souls.  This will be a day to day process.

Meanwhile, back at their house, I have been cooking and helping Jenni to get some life things in order.  We manage to keep our spirits up, but, of course, there are breakdowns into tears.  My free tie is spent notifying the rest of the family and siblings of progress. My siblings are the world to me, and I am homesick for them all right now!

So that is where I am, I miss my family back on Cape Cod so much....going home for a short time next week, but will come back.

Love and peace and extra hugs to family at this time.

Saturday, January 26, 2019

Birthday Wishes

Celebrating the birthday of my LOVE, aka LM, today.  Wow, could I have ever imagined, that life would bring me the love of such a wonderful man??  I doubt it!!!

The day has begun with his favorite strawberry shortcake scones!

Soon, we are off to visit a farmers market, purportedly to find the best homemade rye bread anywhere. After that we will visit Crabapples in Falmouth to acquire a quart of fish chowder.

Maybe, just maybe, we will stop at People for Cats in E. Falmouth to see if there might be an adult kitty looking for the perfect home.   

A delightful memory from our recent trip to Canada...
A sweet moment in memory of dear Ms G

In gratitude, with deep love, and happiness, this day is dedicated to you, my love!!

Thursday, January 24, 2019

Boz Day

Oh, Happy Boy!

 Purrfectly happy with his stolen hair elastic!
Napper extraordinaire, so when it is time to pillage and plunder he is ready!!

Stormy Thursday here, high winds and heavy rain.

Got to the Y for a workout before the worst arrived.

Peace! 💙

Wednesday, January 23, 2019

Finding Warmth

Cape Cod and much of the northeast area have been gripped in a deep freeze for a few days, and it is a great relief this morning to see brilliant red skies welcome the day. Temps are going up!  We have all come through fine with no frozen pipes, and I am most grateful for only having to take a few quick trips out each day, and having a warm home and my humidifier to get me through.

So, let's go to the Bahamas, if only for a few minutes.

Just before Christmas, my grandson, Marshall (son of oldest daughter, Anne, and her late husband, David), married his beautiful and sweet, fiancée, Paige, on the beach at Anne's home on Eleuthera, in the Bahamas.  Thought I would share a few photos to at least give you all the illusion of being in warmth.  They had a very intimate ceremony on my very favorite beach, Coco di Mama, near Governor's Harbour.
Paige -always beautiful, especially as the bride.

Grandsons Marshall and Jared with lovely Mom Anne

Bryan, father of the bride
Rhonda, mother of the bride

Anne, Page and Ronda

Anne, Jared, Marshall, Paige, Nana Blanche (David's Mom), Jenn (Jared's wife)

Front porch of Anne's house

At Coco di Mama Resort

They had a beautiful day and celebration in the elegant yet casual manner Paige envisioned!

Peace, love and warmth this day!!