Another “Terry” Encounter !

While driving on the base yesterday morning enroute to the gymnasium, I couldn’t help but to admire the beauty of the Indian River which I could see out of my driver’s window. Then suddenly out of no where, this beautiful “little egret” as shown in the photo came out to greet me. Could this be another sighting of Terry ? His last visit to me as you recall was as a tortoise. I wish I would have captured the actual positon of the bird “Terry” when it was staring directly at me, but I wasn’t quick enough to catch that exact moment. This exchange just like the last time was very brief, but just enough of a visit to one again let me know that Terry’s spirit is still present with me and that he continues to wish me future happiness in life, despite his recent departure to a better place. Luv, Gary

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“Sto-Lat, Sto-Lat (Part 2)”

Hey All,

For some reason this very old video and the only one that I have of my Dad would not open up on the original post.  So, what I did was view the video on my computer and due a new video off my phone from that video (so naturally the quality is not very good and is kind of a pirated version). I then had to send that revised video thru You tube and then share it onto the Word Press site.  I am not sure how to replace this video with the one that didn’t work on the original post so to correct for now I did this Part 2 post.  I am sure there is an easier way to do this and eventually I will learn !!! Luv Gary

Sto-Lat, Sto-Lat!!

“Sto-lat” (One Hundred Years) is a traditional Polish song that is sung to express good wishes, good health and long life to a person. An English version of the lyrics are:

Good luck, good cheer, may you live a hundred years.

Good luck, good cheer, may you live a hundred years.

Good luck, good cheer, may you live a hundred years.

One Hundred Years!

If you were in Poland and it was making you nervous that you wouldn’t be able to pronounce the above words in Polish at a birthday celebration, do not panic too much. “Sto Lat” is often accompanied by vodka, which somehow makes the pronunciation much easier!

So why am I writing this post to you today? It was on September 27, 1917, that a little baby boy named Stanley was born to a polish immigrant couple who settled in Lynn, Massachusetts. Stanley was the youngest of 7 children and if he lived to this very day, Stanley would have reached that 100 Year “Sto-lat” landmark. This man Stanley that I am speaking about was my dear Dad!

Unfortunately, my Dad did not live to be 100 years old. He went to heaven peacefully on January 9th, 2009 (about 8 years ago) at the age of 91, while in the comfort of his home. On that very morning just before he passed, my parents had pre-arranged for a visit from their lawyer to their house to sign their updated last will and testament. Ironically, in just less than one hour after the attorney left my parent’s house, my Dad simply sat down on his favorite chair and moments later—- his heart just simply stopped.

My Dad was such a wonderful person who was loved by all. He never complained and rarely talked much about himself. When you would meet him, he genuinely was interested in you and your welfare and would take the time to listen intently to what you had to say. My Dad was the kind of person who loved his wife and family deeply, who was proud of his three sons, and who would always speak from the heart.

I really miss my Dad even after all these years. However, I am comforted to know that he is at peace and that he continues to lovingly watch over us (his family) from his rightful place in heaven.

“Sto-lat” “Sto-lat” my dear Dad ——- you finally made it to 100 years !  “Sto-lat” !!!

 

Unfortunately, unlike Terry’s Blog I do not have many current pictures of my Dad here with me in my RV in Tampa. However, I incorporated into this Blog a photo of my Dad (in his younger years) that you might recognize since it was previously used by Terry as the main character in a couple of his creative short stories.

Also included is the only video that I have of my Dad probably taken about 10 to 12 years ago and a photo although a bit dark of his Urn, favorite hat and a photo of my Dad’s smiling face proudly showing “The Drabczuk smile”!

Also included below are a couple of other personal comments about my Dad:

 

From my mother Stacia (his wife): What can I write about my husband?  He was the best thing that ever happened to me.  I’m sure glad I accepted his New Year’s invitation to go on a date when he called me on Christmas Eve in 1947.  That was the beginning of it all.  In May of 1949, Stan and I married.  He gave me 60 years of the happiest times of my life, but most of all he left me with three wonderful sons – Jan, Gary and Randy.

From my brother Jan (his oldest son): Growing up I always remember that my Dad was there for me. He would come home usually after working overtime and he still had time for me. He was there for both my happy and sad times. Dad gave me the direction, education and love that has made me successful in life. Every day I wish I could be more like him. Wish you were still hear Dad. Happy 100th birthday.

From my brother Randy (his youngest son): I can’t believe my dad would have turned a 100 years old today.  I also can’t believe it’s been over 8 years since his passing.  Not a day goes by that I don’t think of him.  He was a wonderful father, husband and man of this world.  He was a friend to all that knew him. My dad was the type of guy that could walk into a room of strangers and then walk out of that room with every one of those strangers becoming his friend.   He made everybody laugh.   Growing up with my dad provides me with some of my best memories in life.  He was always supportive of me and encouraged me to excel in everything I did.  No matter how busy he was with working extra hours to support our family, he would still find time in his schedule for me and that made me feel special.  From the simple things in life like coming up to tuck me in bed when I was little or the difficult things like coming to the hospital when I was in a car wreck, I could always see in my dad’s eyes how much he loved me.  Even as an adult, when I went back home to visit, I could always feel my dad’s love.  I only wish I could be half the man my dad was. I love my dad, I miss my dad and I wish my dad a Happy 100th Birthday!

Here’s to my dad… “Na zdrowie!”

From my sister-in-law Gail (my brother Jan’s wife): Stanley was always a lot of fun and happy to see anyone who walked into his home. He made everyone feel welcome and could not wait to chat with you. He made me feel like part of the family from the first meeting. I will always love and miss him as his daughter in law. He will forever be missed.

 

From Terry (my deceased spouse, written several months ago): Gary’s father is now gone from this world, and I only had the opportunity to be in his company twice.  From the memories of Gary and his family and the short time I knew him; he was an extremely patient, funny and easy-going man.  A son, a brother, a husband, a father, a respected man.  He is missed and now a memory, but he is not forgotten.

 

Brotherly Transformations

Still more came to visit.

As mentioned in this past weekend’s posts, I had more family visitors.

The trip was planned for some time, and I did not foresee myself being in the hospital.  But there I was and here they came and we made the best of it.  This family visit involved my oldest brother, his wife and their daughter and son.  Gary, the usual host with the most; never skipped a beat and helped make the best of their time here when not visiting me in the hospital.  Really, who wants to go to Florida and spend their time at the hospital?

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Image Provided by: Kyrene Foundation

With the arrival of Monday came my brother and his family’s departure.  We were not able to spend a great deal of time together, but that time together was important for all of us.  They needed to see and visit with me just as much as I needed to see and visit with them.

As with all the previous family visits, there were tears, honestly, openness and the knowing that this time spent together could very well be our last time together.

Monday morning, it was only my brother to come visit me one more time before heading back home to Texas.  This brotherly time together, just us two together and talking about our relationship through the years was important.  This time together to share a hug and say, ‘I love you’ without feeling embarrassed and uneasy is what I believe to be the conclusion of a lifetime brotherly relationships and brotherly transformations.

We both came full circle in this relationship of ours and we departed knowing the love we have for each other is strong, real and sincere.

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Image Provided by: vord.dvrlists.com

The previous years and years of what use to be our brotherly relationship was transformed on Monday.  A new brotherly relationship like none other we had experienced over the years.

Why wait until the last minute for these transformations?

I have no answers; I guess that is just life.

I love you brother and your family and thank you for visiting me.

You are important to me, as is our brotherly transformations.

let’s go celebrate

One year ago, today we left.

One year ago, today was his ‘big’ day.

But the leaving overshadowed his ‘big’ day.

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One year ago, today I published a post ‘Yes, today is the day we celebrate.‘, in which I wrote the following words –

You know what today is?  How could you forget, I have written about it for weeks and months now.

Yes, today is the day the new owners sign papers to buy our home.

Yes, today is the day we leave our home for the last time.

Yes, today is the day we make our way to Pensacola, Florida.

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Yes, today is the day we celebrate.

In today’s post, I write the following words –

One year ago, today we left Dallas immediately after signing papers of the sale of our house.

One year ago, today was his ‘big’ day; it was Gary’s 60th birthday.

But the leaving overshadowed his ‘big’ day; there was no cake or ice cream.

Today let’s celebrate Gary’s 61st birthday!

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Happy Birthday Gary.  You my husband and partner, my caretaker and friend, my rock of support.  You bring meaning to my life, my heart and soul.

For this I adore you and love you.

Happy 61th Birthday!

Now let’s go celebrate.

Weekend Spent with Sister

You may remember in my post last week ‘Who is next?‘, I wrote the following –

This coming Friday, my twin sister and my mom will be visiting.

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Image Provided by: welcometosister.com

In today’s post, I write the following –

Because I will be spending time with my twin sister this weekend, I decided to take it easy here on WP.

I disabled comments for this post; I hope you don’t mind.

Thank you for stopping by today to read, and even though you are unable to leave a comment, you can still ‘Like’ my post.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

Weekend Spent with Mom

You may remember in my post last week ‘Who is next?‘, I wrote the following –

This coming Friday, my twin sister and my mom will be visiting.

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Image Provided by: Pixabay

In today’s post, I write the following –

Because I will be spending time with my mom this weekend, I decided to take it easy here on WP.

I disabled comments for this post; I hope you don’t mind.

Thank you for stopping by today to read, and even though you are unable to leave a comment, you can still ‘Like’ my post.

Happy Weekend Everyone!

Who is next?

In my post ‘Phone Calls‘, I wrote the following –

So, the news of my cancer spreading and growing was received on a Friday; and Saturday Gary made a couple of calls.

He called my twin sister and he called my stepmom.  Why call these two family members?

My stepmom is the caretaker of my dad who has Parkinson’s Disease.  My dad’s health has deteriorated a great deal in the past couple of years.

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Image Provided by: Kyrene Foundation

At times, it is very difficult to understand his speech and because of the medications he is on; he sleeps a lot.  My stepmom has been a part of the family for over 30 years and is in contact with my siblings.  Gary knew in talking with her, she in turn would talk with my siblings.

My twin sister, being the only female sibling, has a close relationship with my mom – they live in the same city.  Gary did not want to call my mom directly as he was concerned about upsetting her, plus a sensitive matter was to be discussed and Gary felt it coming from her daughter, my twin sister would be better received from mom.

In today’s post, I write the following –

Do you remember Father’s Day weekend?  My 3 sons surprised me with a visit that weekend.  It was an emotional weekend for all of us as we chatted about my current health situation.

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Image Provided by: Board of Wisdom

I was honest with them and they know the seriousness of my cancer and the ways it is invading my body and what we are doing to fight back.  They saw me at my worse; just a shell of a man who is weak, but still strong.  You can read more about our special weekend in my post ‘Father & Sons‘.

A couple of weeks after my son’s visit, my dad and stepmom came to visit.  They spent a week and I had many special moments with my dad, moments I will not forget.  You can read more about their visit in my post ‘Chats, Tears & Love‘.

Do I have other family members coming to visit?  Well, since you asked –

This coming Friday, my twin sister and my mom will be visiting.  Another important visit I am looking forward to because my mom and I are close.  I have written many posts about the importance she is to me.  This will be an emotional visit because my mom, she worries like most moms do and I think she feels helpless.

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Image Provided by: Quotes Pictures – QuotesPie.com

My sister and I are twins and therefore we have a special bond.  I believe if that bond were broken in anyway, there would be a great loss there.  My sister has revealed to me she is heartbroken and upset.

This weekend I will have special visits with special family members; both have been important to me throughout my life and especially now.

Chats, Tears & Love

Last month, in my post ‘Phone Calls‘, I wrote the following –

(note: since the very beginning of my journey with my cancer, all procedures and tests and treatments; all resulted in bad news.  I have not once received good news in the past 1 ½ years.  NOT ONCE)

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Image Provided by: Emedicine Medscape

So, the news of my cancer spreading and growing was received on a Friday; and Saturday Gary made a couple of calls.

What was discussed in these phone calls?

Gary was honest and sincere and direct.  He was caring and sensitive and calm.  He called these 2 people to let them know the truth concerning my current health situation.  He told them I am in a great deal of pain to the point I am using a cane to help me walk.  He told them I have lost almost 40 lbs. and my appetite is not always the best.  He told them the results of the latest scan.

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Image Provided by: Kyrene Foundation

He told them what is to come with regards to my future treatment and the slim possibility of positive results.  He told them more than likely we would not make it to Texas for Thanksgiving.  He told them he felt it important that they (my family) consider making plans to visit me here in Florida.

In today’s post, I write the following –

You remember last month on Father’s Day weekend, I received a surprise visit from my 3 sons?  My heart was happy and the time spent together that weekend is priceless.  It was by far the best Father’s Day I have ever had.

I just recently had more visitors that left yesterday after a weeklong visit.   My dad and stepmom drove from Texas to come visit me.  The time spent with my dad was special and I feel a closeness to him I have never felt before.  We chatted about our relationship and the mistakes we made along the way, and the love we have for each other.  We talked about my current health situation and we cried together and he provided me support only a dad can.

The weeklong visit was fun, special and very emotional and one I will never forget.  My dad has Parkinson’s that has progressed in recent years; he is lovingly taken care of by my stepmom.  She is an amazing lady, who I have great respect for.  I know my dad is in good hands with her, just like I am in good hands with Gary.

Image3Thank you dad, for taking the time to visit me.

I love you,

Terry

Father & Sons

So many unexpected events have happened the last 2 weeks; and I was so totally un-prepared for them.

Saturday, June 17th in my post ‘unexpectedly‘, I wrote the following words –

Yesterday afternoon, I was alone resting. 

Suddenly the door opens and there was an unexpected surprise.

I am disabling comments my friends, because I need time away from WP today.

You know my appreciation for you all is great and never ending.

Thank you my friends for allowing me to take a day off.

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Image Provided by: The View From A Slightly Twisted Angle

In today’s post, I write the following –

Upon the door opening, my Son #2 and his wife walk in.  I instantly break down with emotions and tears; and stand to give my Son #2 a big hug and a big kiss on the cheek.  “What are you doing here?”, I ask.  “We wanted to come down and spend Father’s Day with you.”  With more emotions and tears I let him know the importance of his unexpected visit and what it means to me.  We spend that Friday evening in the RV because, they are tired having started early that morning and I am not feeling well at all.

The very next day Saturday, I continue to not feel well; I am unable to walk on my right leg without using a cane and many other parts of my body are hurting.  With my pain medications just recently increased, I am tired and drowsy, but do my best to stay alert.

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Image Provided by: Meaningful Ideas

That afternoon, Son #2 and Gary leave to run an errand and my lovely daughter-in-law spend time together talking about what is going on with me and I open up some about my feelings with her and how I feel about it all.

After some time, the door opens and Son #2, informs me he has something for me.  I look his way, and following him are my Son #1 and Son #3.  Now the water works are flowing full force and as I rise to be at their level, the legs are wobbly and my back is bent forward – but the hugs and kisses are sturdy, strong and sincere.

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Image Provided by: http://www.pinterest.com

What an honor to have all 3 sons here to celebrate Father’s Day with me.

We spend several hours talking and catching up and I let them know I am not feeling well and it may be difficult for me to go out and about.  They respond letting me know they are here to see me, not to go out and about to do other things.  So my 3 sons and 1 lovely daughter-in-law, Gary and I sit in the RV and talk.  The subject matter of my health is discussed and the severity of it.  I expressed many internal feelings to my sons, letting them know I did my best as a father given the circumstances.  I let them know the importance of my love I have for them.  We talk about life, relationships, and my cancer.

20170416_194313 (2)The weekend proceeds with most of our time spend in the RV.  My pain level is high and my right leg is in bad shape when trying to walk.

We all had a wonderful weekend; the best Father’s Day ever!