Last Updated on July 17, 2016 by Kristi Linauer
Good morning, all! Well, the last two weeks have been tough and heart wrenching. My step-father (a.k.a., my bonus dad) Jon passed away last Wednesday. It still seems so strange to say that. Unimaginable, even. The words catch in my throat, because it just doesn’t even seem possible.
Even more unimaginable is that this all started with a urinary tract infection. Even now, I keep asking myself, “How can that be?!” I’ve had at least two UTIs in my lifetime. I didn’t even go to the doctor, and I certainly didn’t feel it necessary to go to the hospital. I just loaded up on cranberry extract pills, D-mannose, and Vitamin C, along with lots of water, and they were gone the next day.
So on April 15, when Jon was first rushed to the hospital for severe confusion, inability to walk, inability to understand verbal commands, etc., UTI was the last thing I ever would have thought of. But as it turns out, UTIs can be very serious in older adults, and they can cause severe confusion, inability to walk, and many other symptoms like that, and especially in those with pre-existing medical conditions like Jon’s Parkinson’s Disease.
But still in my mind, it was just a UTI. Sure, it caused strange symptoms in him that I had never heard of, but at least it was just a UTI. They’d get him fixed right up and send him home, right? Well, Jon spent several weeks in the hospital and the Senior Care rehab healing and regaining motor skills, although he never regained his ability to walk. Then arrangements and preparations were made to bring him home. Special equipment was purchased for home use now that Jon was non-ambulatory, and he finally went home.
We all breathed a sigh of relief that that long ordeal was over, and Jon was finally back home where he should be. Mom, Rod (my brother) and Jon began to settle into their new “normal,” learning how to live eveyday life with a non-ambulatory person in a very non-wheelchair-friendly house, but they were somehow making it work. But that new normal only lasted for five days, because on the evening of the fifth day, Jon began to complain about serious pain, and his blood oxygen level fell to 90.
Once again, he was rushed to the emergency room. The diagnosis: UTI…again. I was so frustrated on Jon’s behalf that he was going to have to go through all of that again — hospital, rehab, etc. But in my mind, I once again thought, “Well, at least it’s just a UTI.”
Then I got the text from my brother: “The doctor has told [Mom] that IF Jon makes it, he will have to go to a nursing home.”
IF Jon makes it.
It’s just two letters — I…F — and yet that one tiny word fell on my chest like a ton of bricks. IF he makes it? What the heck does the doctor mean “IF”? Is he some kind of moron? It’s just a UTI!! Did this idiot just get out of med school yesterday?
But as it turns out, this time it wasn’t just a UTI. It was an incredibly serious UTI that had caused sepsis (blood poisoning). Plus, he had pneumonia. And blood clots in his lungs. All of that, combined with his pre-existing Parkinson’s, meant that the chances of him pulling through this time were low.
None of us could believe it. Just a few days earlier, he was being released from rehab to go home. And now…this.
All of his kids were here — his four kids plus his three bonus kids. And from his very first night in the hospital on April 15 through the end, Jon didn’t spend one single minute without at least one family member by his side. At least one family member slept in his room to be with him each night, and during the day there were almost always at least two, if not more, family members with him.
And it was during his last two days in the hospital that we were all given a most beautiful gift. Because of his Parkinson’s, Jon’s mind hadn’t been completely clear in months…maybe longer. And even though he could speak, he wasn’t easy to understand because he had a hard time forming thoughts, and he would hallucinate, and he would speak very softly so that it was impossible to understand. That had become Jon’s normal. But during his last two full days in the hospital, Jon’s mind became amazingly clear, his voice became strong, and he talked, and talked, and talked, like we hadn’t heard him do in a very long time. He told stories, and carried on conversations. Those two days were an amazingly beautiful gift.
The next day, the confusion and inability to speak returned, and Jon was moved to hospice where he spent the final week of his life surrounded by his family members. He never spoke another word after he was moved to hospice, and almost the entire week he was there, he was sleeping. But even so, I know that he knew he was surrounded with family members who loved him dearly.
He went to be with the Lord at about 11:30am last Wednesday, and we had a beautiful funeral service for him on Friday.
And even through all of that, it’s still unimaginable. I can’t fully wrap my head around the fact that he’s actually gone. It’s hard to imagine walking into Mom & Jon’s home and not seeing Jon sitting there in his chair, looking at me with those joy-filled eyes and that big smile that lets me know he’s genuinely delighted to see me. It’s gut-wrenching that just 13 years ago, I said goodbye to my daddy, and now much too soon, here I am having to say goodbye to my sweet bonus dad.
But this is our new normal. I hate it. I don’t want this new normal. But life doesn’t often give us a choice, so we do the best that we can, knowing that time does, and will, ease the pain. My life is forever changed having known Jon, and having had the opportunity to be his bonus daughter for the last 11.5 years. What an amazing man he was!
And now, today it’s time for me to get back to work. I don’t want to. I haven’t had any interest in working on projects for the last two weeks. But I know Jon would not approve of me sitting in bed crying and doing absolutely nothing for a moment longer. So today, I’m back to work, back to everyday life, and back to this strange, cruel and unwelcome new “normal.”
P.S. Thank you so much for all of your kind comments and emails over the last two weeks. I felt very blessed to have so many people praying for my family and sending sweet words of encouragement.
Addicted 2 Decorating is where I share my DIY and decorating journey as I remodel and decorate the 1948 fixer upper that my husband, Matt, and I bought in 2013. Matt has M.S. and is unable to do physical work, so I do the majority of the work on the house by myself. You can learn more about me here.
I hope you’ll join me on my DIY and decorating journey! If you want to follow my projects and progress, you can subscribe below and have each new post delivered to your email inbox. That way you’ll never miss a thing!
NickiJune 13, 2016 at 9:30 am
My heart is just broken for you and your family. I’ve been thinking of you since your last post and wondering how your step dad was doing. As someone who has watched several loved ones slowly drift away, each day a little bit less of themselves than they were the day before, I know that helpless feeling all too well. I’m so thankful that you all had the days with Jon where he had clarity and you guys could say important things to each other. That is truly a beautiful gift.
Your family continues to be in my thoughts and prayers. Much love to you all.
KeriJune 13, 2016 at 9:31 am
I am so so sorry for your loss Kristi.
ElaineJune 13, 2016 at 9:33 am
Lovely expressive post Kristi. My heart bleeds for you and your family. Jon was a very lucky man to be loved by so many.
Lisa GarberJune 13, 2016 at 9:33 am
Your term “bonus dad” – I had never heard this before. I’m a stepmother to two young adults, and my own children have had a stepmother since they were very young. The measure of affection in your term “bonus dad”, and your loving remembrance of him – well, makes me wish I knew you in person, Kristi. Xo
D. WheelerJune 13, 2016 at 9:36 am
Kristi, my deepest sympathies for the loss of your family’s beloved, Jon. I’m so sorry. Jon’s story is eerily similar to what happened to my sweet dad 13 years ago; the beginning of his deterioration began with a severe UTI.
I think the days of clarity are a special gift from God. The same thing happened with my dad and my beloved husband who passed away when he was just 44, which made me a widow at 38.
The “new normal” never feels normal once you lose someone you love so deeply, but God reveals many blessings in the midst of sadness and grief. Sometimes the blessings are hard to notice because we are in such deep pain, but they are there. They get easier to recognize as time goes by. Time does not heal all wounds, it just makes it not so “in your face”.
You and your family are in my prayers. Peace and blessings to you all.
DebraJune 13, 2016 at 9:37 am
I am so sorry for your loss. Losing a beloved parent is devastating. Many hugs, Kristi.
Marilyn CanadayJune 13, 2016 at 9:38 am
Prayers for you, your Mom and all your family.
Susan ToftelandJune 13, 2016 at 9:39 am
So sorry for your loss! Go slow and be kind to yourself! PS! I read your blog post to my 69+year old husband. He gets frequent UTI’s (that he seldom has checked out) and he has other medical complications, too. We agreed that your blog is a great reminder to get even minor issues checked out asap. Thank you! Your blog post my save lives, including my husband’s!
Lindsey SmithJune 13, 2016 at 10:49 am
So sorry to you and your entire family with this loss. I agree with Susan! Thanks for sharing. My 76 year old father was diagnosed with Parkinson’s almost 2 years ago, even though we suspected it for 3 years prior. Often fear controls us and too often, one thinks it’s something so tiny, it can be cured at home. I am calling my mother up as soon as I am done posting and reading her your post. My father has become so confused, so quickly, that I have been suspecting it had to be something more. All diseases are horrible, but boy! This Parkinson’s disease has shown my father no mercy. It’s been progressing way too quick! I will pray for peace and a calming effect to embrace you and your FAMILY the coming days and weeks. This is all a part of life, one that none of us like, but we must all endure. It’s thru the sadness that we appreciate the ordinary, mundain, “normal” says more. Peace be with you and THANKS for the warning!
MissyJune 13, 2016 at 9:40 am
So heartwrenching. I’ve been thinking of you and your family every day, and have been checking your blog nonstop to check for updates. I’m so sad to see your update today. 🙁 Please know that all your faithful blog followers think of you and your family as more than just a blog-we feel like we know you and suffer along with you. Prayers going out to you and hope your new “normal” will have as little pain as possible. xoxox
KathyJune 13, 2016 at 9:43 am
How wonderful to have been blessed by such a soul, and how heart-wrenching to lose him. May the Holy Spirit comfort your family, and, in particular, your mom. May deepest condolences. Love to all.
Marianne in Mo.June 13, 2016 at 9:48 am
So sad for you and your family. I had been checking in sporadically to see if I had missed a post, and something told me to check both Thursday and Friday. Guess I had a message from somewhere.
It is a hard road when we lose someone as you well know. But we get thru it somehow.
Take it easy, get back slowly, and be sure to cry if you feel the need. It washes away some of the pain.
God bless you and yours.
TheresaJune 13, 2016 at 9:53 am
I’m so sorry for your loss. It is such a blessing that your family could spend time together at the end. My own grandfather passed away from complications from Parkinson’s disease. It’s a tough one to get your mind around, Parkinson’s disease. Be gentle with yourself. Give yourself time. Nothing will be quite the same again, but you will move forward. And, spend time with your wonderful family, the best salve in difficult times. And write! Even if it’s not about your house. You have a wonderful gift for writing. We all feel very blessed that you share it with us. (((Hugs)))
KateJune 13, 2016 at 10:48 am
Amen Theresa, Kristi has a real gift for writing… Painting a picture with her words.
PattyJune 13, 2016 at 9:53 am
Oh Honey I am so very sorry. You and your family will be in my prayers.
LaurieJune 13, 2016 at 9:55 am
I’ m sorry for your loss, Kristie. Thankfully, your family got the gift of being able to talk with him to have the chance to say your goodbyes.
AndreaJune 13, 2016 at 9:56 am
So sorry for your loss. Hugs from Tennessee.
KhadijaJune 13, 2016 at 9:57 am
I’m so sorry for your loss. I can’t imagine how painful this is for you and your family, especially your mom. Your bonus Dad sounds like he was a wonderful man, thank you for sharing your story about him. Sending hugs all around. Take care.
Dee TracyJune 13, 2016 at 9:58 am
I’m so sorry Kristi. I am praying for peace for you, your Mom and the rest of your family. God has a way of surrounding us when we feel that we can’t go on. Thanks so much for giving us the update. Will keep you all in my thoughts and prayers.
Tammy RiceJune 13, 2016 at 9:59 am
So sorry for you loss. He sounded like a wonderful man. God bless you all.
FrancyJune 13, 2016 at 10:03 am
So gut-wrenching to have to read your story… so sorry for your loss. Your family sounds amazing and it was great to hear that he was surrounded by love!
Ruth M.June 13, 2016 at 10:04 am
I’m so sorry for your loss. You and all your family are in my prayers.
katyJune 13, 2016 at 10:05 am
Your family is in my thoughts and prayers. And you have been missed while on hiatus. I’m sorry for your loss.
HeatherJune 13, 2016 at 10:05 am
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as you celebrate the life and mourn the loss of your beloved bonus dad. Wishing you all peace and healing. I am sure his joyful spirit lives on in those that loved him. Blessings.
CatherineJune 13, 2016 at 10:07 am
I’m so sorry for your loss.
JaneJune 13, 2016 at 10:11 am
So sorry for your loss. Give your mom a hug from me and save a hug for yourself, too. May the memories of fun times you spent together brighten your days.
Carol FraleyJune 13, 2016 at 10:11 am
I’m so filled with sadness for your family’s loss. Prays are with you and your family.
Ruth AnneJune 13, 2016 at 10:12 am
Cyber hugs to you and all your family. It’s a crazy roller coaster ride, this thing called grief. Just know that your cyber friends and family will ride it with you if you but ask.
DaleJune 13, 2016 at 10:13 am
Kristi, That was a beautiful tribute to Jon. I felt the love you have for him in every word. Please know that I will continue to pray that God gives you and your family strength.
Susan DavisJune 13, 2016 at 10:17 am
Sending deepest regards of sympathy for your family. I love that your family is so joyous and happy and loving to one another and are there for all of you in the family. Enjoy those memories and make new ones. Grieve and you will eventually move on. Godspeed!
AnnJune 13, 2016 at 10:18 am
It sounds like you were one Blessed bonus daughter having been in his life. He will root you on from his heavenly home.
AshleyJune 13, 2016 at 10:20 am
I want to send peace, understanding and blessings in prayer you and your families way! Loss is such a hard understanding and i know you are “dealing” the best way you know how. May God bless you and keep you!
Bev JonesJune 13, 2016 at 10:20 am
Prayers for your family during this sad time. You were blessed to have, not one, but two dads that loved you and you loved. Hold on to those precious memories!
KarenJune 13, 2016 at 10:21 am
I’m so sorry for your loss and know that it’ll take time to get accustomed to this new normal. I wish you and your family all the best to get through it and finally find joy in life again! I’m glad that as part of your cyber family I can send my love and compassion…
Kelly PalmerJune 13, 2016 at 10:23 am
So sorry Kristi 🙁 Prayers for you and your sweet family.
Susan RutterJune 13, 2016 at 10:25 am
May the peace of God enfold you and your family. Praying for everyone.
JolynJune 13, 2016 at 10:26 am
Kristi, I am so sorry. It is so hard to lose a dearly loved one. Be gentle with yourself. My deepest condolences to you and all your family, especially your Mom.
Janet LJune 13, 2016 at 10:31 am
So sorry for the loss of your Step Dad.
BetsyJune 13, 2016 at 10:32 am
Those “new normals” after the death of a loved one are tough to accept. It is a haunting sadness that will be not quite as painful, with time. Hugs from New York State.
Wanda MeadowsJune 13, 2016 at 10:34 am
So very sorry for your loss. I’ve lost both my parents and both my in laws and it is gut wrenching. As time goes on we learn to live with that void in our hearts.
LaurieJune 13, 2016 at 10:35 am
Kristi, I’m so sorry for your loss. When my brother died I also felt very uninspired to create anything. Then someone suggested that I make something in remembrance of my brother. I created a quilt with all the things that he loved on it, airplanes, clouds, ect. Later I did the same thing when my Oma (grandmother) died. Perhaps you can find solace in painting a picture in colors that remind you of him. To this day, every time I look at the quilts I made, I feel close to them.
DaleJune 13, 2016 at 1:07 pm
Laurie your comment is so true and it hit home. I couldn’t do anything after the death of my son. A Christmas tree was out of the question even though I felt bad for my other children I just couldn’t do it. Finally, it was suggested that I decorate a tree in his remembrance. I decorated one with all white lights, angels, snowflakes, stars, etc……anything heavenly and continue to do the same every year in his honor. It is so beautiful that I don’t want to take it down when the time comes to do so. I hope Kristi can does something in Jon’s honor that will give her peace and happiness, he certainly sounds like a wonderful man!!
Barbara PilcherJune 13, 2016 at 10:35 am
You have my sympathy, Kristi. I am sure he was delighted to have you as a bonus daughter! Thank you for getting the word out about UTI in older people, because older people may not have the usual symptoms of the problem — urgency, burning, discomfort, etc. Instead, it manifests as confusion and lightheadness and is often missed even in nursing homes. It’s important to know, because we’ll all get old…if we are blessed.
ChristineJune 13, 2016 at 10:36 am
So sorry for your loss. I just lost my grandma and understand your pain 🙁 hopefully it will get easier with time.
JaybirdJune 13, 2016 at 10:36 am
Just a hug for you…
PS: I sent you an email…..
CathyJune 13, 2016 at 10:37 am
Thank you for sharing Jon’s story, Kristi. My dad had Parkinson’s and it’s an awful disease, so I know a bit of what you are going through. Plus it was only eight short years ago that my husband suddenly passed away. Now is a time to be selfish. Yes, life goes on and you need to take care of things that have taken a back seat, but you are important and you need to be cared for.
My prayers are with you and your family, especially your mom, right now.
Zeita ReedJune 13, 2016 at 10:44 am
So amazingly sorry for your loss. Take all the time you need to mourn. You can’t avoid it, try as you might. And it’s ok. It’s part of the process. May peace, comfort and solace surround you during this truly painful time.
KateJune 13, 2016 at 10:44 am
Funny, last Wednesday morning you and your family popped in my head… When that happens I always pray for those souls who just “pop in” – I will continue to pray for all of you. It hurts, it hurts terribly, but our hope is in the Lord, that is Who we cling to. God’s peace be with all of you.
PamJune 13, 2016 at 10:44 am
So sorry for your loss my thoughts and prayers are with you.
ConnieKJune 13, 2016 at 10:45 am
Kristi, I am so sorry for your family’s loss. I hope your Mom will be able to deal with her grief in time and I’m glad she had the years of love with your ‘bonus dad’. You have been through the grieving process before with your Dad but it is just a hard each time we lose someone. The new normal is really just a ‘new reality’ and is so hard to grasp in the beginning. Be kind to yourself right now and if you really don’t feel like doing a project right now then put it off a day or so. In time, you can begin doing them again in Jon’s honor, and as a special way to remember all you gained from having him in your life and as a way to honor the pride he must have felt for you and all you accomplish. Make your next project something you enjoy or really want to accomplish and call it “Jon’s Project”. Put your grief into action in his memory and his special place in your life. Each loss of a loved one takes a little piece of us, too. Its in the love we send with them.
Thanks for writing about his UTI and its effects. I intend to show this to my 80 year old husband who is in good health and tends to ignore symptoms of everything. You have helped a lot of people by sharing this. I never knew they could be so dangerous either.
Lots of people are sharing your grief because you take your time to share your life with us.
Lois BlackJune 13, 2016 at 10:56 am
I am so sorry for your loss. My prayers are with you and your family.
AllisonJune 13, 2016 at 11:00 am
I’m so sorry for your loss of your sweet extra Daddy, Kristi. Having lost a parent years ago, I know how shocking and sudden it can feel – almost surreal. I think you’re absolutely right, though – the people we’ve lost would want us to keep on going. I’ve learned through much trauma and loss in my life that getting back to work can be one of the best things you can do. 🙂 We look forward to you continuing to gift the world with your talents.
MicheleJune 13, 2016 at 11:02 am
I’m so sorry for your loss, Kristi. Having lost both my parents I can identify with the moments of simultaneous joy and profound sadness a hospice experience can provide. Just remember that grief is hard work, and occurs at the pace it must. We will be here when you feel like picking up the tools again.
PMLJune 13, 2016 at 11:02 am
I wish I had something inspiring to say to you, but rather you are the inspiring one for me! May God bless you through this tough time.
Mrs MikeJune 13, 2016 at 11:09 am
I am so very sorry for your loss. Those words seem so inadequate, but they are from my heart. Please know you and your family will be in my prayers.
AngieJune 13, 2016 at 11:11 am
So very sorry for your loss. It’s never easy. We battled that UTI issue for years with my grandmother. We knew when she started telling crazy stories that she had one. Then, when she became less verbal, she had severe sepsis as a result of UTI. she was better for a short time, but also, ultimately, that is what took her. They apparently don’t have what we consider the typical symptoms of UTI. Now, I tell everyone I know dealing with older adults to be on the lookout for this, because it’s so common. Yet I had never heard of it. Broken hips, and dementia, diabetes, etc. But never once had I heard of UTI as a concern with older adults.
Bless you. Praying for comfort and peace for your family.
LillianJune 13, 2016 at 11:14 am
Your love comes through in your words. He was obviously a good and loving man, and it is so,so hard to lose our loved ones.
As you well say time heals, may God give you all comfort and solace in this difficult time.
ValJune 13, 2016 at 11:18 am
My sincere condolences for you and your family Kristi!
jeanne in austinJune 13, 2016 at 11:20 am
I’m so very sorry to hear that your bonus dad is gone. And I’m really glad that you got the bonus of clarity and communication with him in the days before. What an incredible gift.
I hope that soon you will remember more of how he lived, rather than how he died.
janpartistJune 13, 2016 at 11:22 am
So, sorry for your loss. What a special person to have earned the title of bonus-dad, and you are very open to have embraced him as such. You are right, Jon I’m sure would want you to at least make baby steps in learning about the next chapter in your life as it is now. And, now you have a Dad angel on both shoulders to protect you and keep you on the right path. Sad and comforting at the same time. Big ol’ German hug for you
LeslieJune 13, 2016 at 11:28 am
Kristi – I am so sorry for the loss of your ‘bonus dad’, you were so lucky to have him in your life. God gave you such a gift with those two days of clarity and speech and it is obvious you cherish it. One day you will be able to think about Jon with more smiles than tears but it will take time. I am so glad your Mom has your brother and niece living with her and she does not have to deal with a quiet house. I am praying for comfort for all who loved Jon.
NonnaJune 13, 2016 at 11:31 am
Im so sorry for your loss honey…so happy for you that u had these years with this fine man…your bonus dad..that is an awesome testament to your stepdad…that he inspired that love from his stepchildren..its not always that way…but beautiful to see when it is…God bless your family…
Rebecca BJune 13, 2016 at 11:32 am
I’m sorry Kristi. It does sound like you were blessed after losing your dad to have a step dad who you loved so much. I have heard that toward the end of life, many people who are close to dying become suddenly more lucid and energetic than they have been in the recent past. I guess its like the body and mind preparing to leave and saying goodbye. It sounds like Jon was saved so this is not the end ….
On a selfish note, I’m glad that you’re back to your decorating projects. Hopefully it will get your mind focused on something else besides your new normal. At least your house is something familiar.
DianeJune 13, 2016 at 11:35 am
My dad was an amazing man… he believed that I could do anything. Everyone needs someone like that in their court. My husband cheers me on… but dads are the best. How wonderful that you were blessed with a bonus dad, too. My heart hurts for you Kristi. Grief is unpredictable… go easy on yourself… your followers will understand. Glad you were able to share your heart with us today. Praying that God’s comfort will surround you completely.
AmandaJune 13, 2016 at 11:36 am
I’m so sorry for your loss. You and your family will continue to be in my prayers.
JaneJune 13, 2016 at 11:38 am
I’m so sorry for the loss of your second dad. My condolences to your entire family
EmJune 13, 2016 at 11:38 am
With deepest sympathy…
Just lost my Godfather to Parkinsons/Alz with Lewy Body dementia. Such a difficult disease…. Also experienced the recurring UTI thing with my late FIL…. agree that it’s shocking how something so simple sounding can be so life threatening to older folks.
Blessed that you had Jon and his family join your; hoping that bonus is a source of strength and comfort in the weeks ahead.
DianeJune 13, 2016 at 11:39 am
I am so sorry. I will surround you and your family with prayer.
EileenJune 13, 2016 at 11:40 am
I am so sorry for your loss. How heart wrenching. Thank you so much for the education about UTI. Having had them myself, I’m a bit in shock. I’m older now so I will definitely be aware of that for me and my husband. Thank you.
A. THOMPSONJune 13, 2016 at 11:42 am
Dear, sweet Kristi, I am so sorry for your loss and my heart breaks for you. You have often been in my thoughts and prayers, hoping for a miracle. I know it is hard to fathom that your bonus dad is gone….I just lost my own sweet mother and it is still hard without her.
You have wonderful memories of Jon that will never fade and he will always be with you.
Take all the time you need. (((((HUGS))))))
carswellJune 13, 2016 at 11:47 am
Please accept my condolences for your loss.
SharonJune 13, 2016 at 11:55 am
I am so sorry for your loss. I feel it in the pit of my stomach as I read your post. You’re right, we have to get back to our lives, but give yourself time. I am still grieving the loss of my mother from a year ago. Be easy on yourself and kind to yourself.
Mary MooreJune 13, 2016 at 12:02 pm
Thank you for this post..stating what happened..the personal emotion..and the kind tribute to an amazing man. “Bonus” people are hard to find in this world. I’m very sorry for your loss.
Sheri HepworthJune 13, 2016 at 12:39 pm
I am so very very sorry for this incredible loss.
DonnaJune 13, 2016 at 12:39 pm
Sad for you Kristi and your family and your bonus family. Jon sounds like he was a very well loved and liked man. May his memories comfort you through this painful time.
Laura H.June 13, 2016 at 12:46 pm
I’m so sorry for you and your family’s loss, Kristi and have been praying for you all since you wrote before about what was happening to your sweet bonus Dad. Please take your time getting back into the swing of things and give yourself some time to grieve. I’m sure Jon would understand that. I know those of us out here understand that and will wait for as long as it takes. My thoughts and prayers will continue to be with you!
Avonelle TomlinsonJune 13, 2016 at 12:58 pm
Sending healing, comfort, and sweet memories. You’re so right, the pain DOES ease, with time.
My Daddy died a year and a half ago. I was blessed to be by his side and he went quickly, after 92 years and 5 days of life!!
Hugs. Hugs and comfort as you adjust to this new ‘normal.’
JeanieJune 13, 2016 at 1:18 pm
*big* hug and prayers for you. Jon gave you one last incredible gift…the gift of learning exactly how life threatening UTIs can be. Never, ever try to treat one yourself, because you can get septic so very quickly and kidneys can be irreparably damaged, leaving you with only one option…dialysis.
AmyJune 13, 2016 at 1:32 pm
Sending condolences and love to you and your family. I’ve been there with my own father, and can imagine your pain. Take care of yourself and know that others are here to share your burden. With heartfelt sympathy, Amy
MaryJune 13, 2016 at 1:33 pm
Even though I’ve never met you or Jon I feel I know you… With that being said, I know you brought Jon incredible love, happiness and joy to his life. He’s smiling down on you now and urging you to be the best you can be. That, of course, was being the daughter to your “bonus dad”.
I’m so very sorry for your loss. Prayers to you and your family
RJune 13, 2016 at 1:42 pm
I am very sorry for your loss. I lost my grandfather basically from a complication of a UTI as well. It is so unexpected that something so common could be life ending. Keeping you and your family in my thoughts.
LindaJune 13, 2016 at 1:52 pm
I can’t say anything more or different here than what everyone else has expressed, but just know that I also am so so sorry for your family’s loss. What a sad, but uplifting post you wrote. You all are in my prayers for you to go forward, step by step, day by day to get through this time. Stay close to all your family as you will need to lean on each other for support now. I am so so sorry.
lorJune 13, 2016 at 1:56 pm
Your pain and sadness shows with every word. So very sorry for your loss, and this new hole in your heart. You will always have him with you. <3
Judy Maracle SteppacherJune 13, 2016 at 2:01 pm
I am so sorry for your loss, sending you a hug.
Kathy SimmonsJune 13, 2016 at 2:49 pm
I’m so sorry, Kristi! I’m so glad to hear that he wasn’t ever alone, and that you’ve had family to lean on. What a blessing to have a bonus dad who loves you so much and who you love so much. I hope peace will attend you and your mom and all of those who love Jon. Just keep swimmingI can’t wait to read about what you do next! 😉
Loves from Idaho! <3 Kathy
DonnaJune 13, 2016 at 2:52 pm
So sorry for your loss. He sounds like a great man.
EllenJune 13, 2016 at 2:53 pm
I am so very sorry for the loss of your Bonus Dad. UTIs kill many elderly people. When my own mother was in the nursing home for a few years before she died, she continually battled them as most residents do. The reason is the help doesn’t give the proper attention to their hygiene needs. My mother had a heart attack caused by a UTI, and they certainly can become systemic. Patients who are weakened by other problems like Parkinson’s are at a disadvantage. I hope your family’s grief heals and everyone finds peaceful hearts soon.
PatriciaJune 13, 2016 at 2:53 pm
I’m sitting in a Drs waiting room trying not to cry. How wonderful that Jon was so treasured and loved . So often my grown friends whose parents remarry never quite seem to fit as a family unit. Your tribute to this sweet man is a blessing to all who read it .
I’m so sorry Kristi for this new normal .
BarbJune 13, 2016 at 3:31 pm
My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family!
sms114June 13, 2016 at 4:12 pm
I am so very sorry for the loss of your bonus-dad. We are never ready to lose those we love – which is why it’s so important to tell them often what they mean to you.
We are dealing with EXACTLY the same thing (minus the Parkinsons) with my mother-in-law – rushed to ER & it was a UTI. Unbelievable. They’ve given her just a few days to live. Can’t believe it – I had just taken her to lunch & shopping a few short weeks ago.
Life is short – tell those you love how much they mean to you NOW!
Peace & Prayers, to you & your family, Kristi
TammyJune 13, 2016 at 4:15 pm
“Remember the love. Celebrate the life. Share the journey.”
KathyJune 13, 2016 at 4:31 pm
I as so sorry to hear your sad news. I am keeping you, your Mom and your entire family close in prayer. “Bonus dad….Bonus daughter”……what a beautiful way to express the loving relationship you had!
Bettsi LedesmaJune 13, 2016 at 4:34 pm
Kristi, so sorry for your loss, but so glad you had the gift of two days of lucidity with Jon. He isn’t gone- he lives in your heart and the hearts of all who loved him. God bless.
Sandy BeckwithJune 13, 2016 at 4:43 pm
I’m not good with words, but I just want you to know that your sadness has touched my heart. I will keep you and your family in my prayers.
GayeJune 13, 2016 at 4:46 pm
Kristi,as hard as it is to lose a loved one, it is harder if that one does not know Jesus. But, it seems from your note that Jon did and now he is sitting at the feet of Jesus and basking in his love and his presence. You would not wish him back for that reason alone. It is hard to lose a precious loved one and pray that God’s grace be your sufficiency and your strength. May you be comforted to know that Jon loved Jesus and Jesus loved Jon enough to take him home quickly. It is hard I can tell you to watch the suffering go on and on. It is a blessing when they go quickly into the arms of Jesus. Remember this verse from Jeremiah 31:3 “I have loved you with an everlasting love and that is why I have been faithful to you.”…Cling to that in this time as you share in your grief with you mama ..hug her close and read scripture to her heart that she may know more and more that Jesus loved Jon and he loves mama and he loves you.
Lori RiggsJune 13, 2016 at 5:10 pm
I’m so sorry for your loss Kristi. My dad had emergency gall bladder surgery in April. At 88 he didn’t come back as fast as he has always done. He was only home about 2 1/2 weeks and he was back in the hospital with swelling in the feet, ankles and legs. They found blood clots in both lungs and one leg. They had to cath him because his prostate (now been determined) has not woke up from the surgery yet. They put him on a blood thinner to take care of blood clots and all is good except he went home with a catheter. He says he feels great except for the cath. He goes back June 21 and urologist is going to see if he can go on his own. Don’t know what the outcome will be if he can’t. My mom, 82 has short term memory problems. So it has been tough for both of them and they know they are going to have to make some tough decisions soon like sell their house and go into assisted living. This is a really tough time for all of us. It is so wonderful that you live close and could easily be there. My brother, sister and I grew up in a military family and either served or married people in the military so we all live away from my mom and dad. We have decisions to make too.
edithJune 13, 2016 at 6:04 pm
I am so very sorry for you and your family
designdreamerJune 13, 2016 at 6:09 pm
I am SO sorry. My prayers are with you and your family. I had no idea a UTI could be that serious either! And to think my baby granddaughter had one recently.
Gloria S.June 13, 2016 at 6:13 pm
So very sorry, Kristie and family. God bless you all.
Wendy ChapinJune 13, 2016 at 6:33 pm
My heart breaks for you and your family, Kristi! The gift of speech is truly magnificent. How wonderful for him to regain the ability to express his thoughts to you all. God was there and the memory will be with you forever.
Thank you for sharing your personal life. You are truly amazing.
JoAnneJune 13, 2016 at 6:38 pm
I am very sorry for your loss. Unfortunately, I know how hard it is to say goodbye to someone you love. My prayers and thoughts are with you and your family at this difficult time.
Thank you for sharing your family with us.
lauraJune 13, 2016 at 7:24 pm
I am so sorry for your loss Krisiti. You and your family are in my thoughts at this time. Thank you for the update and for sharing your life with us.
JudiJune 13, 2016 at 7:55 pm
Kristi, so sorry for your loss. He sounds like he made your life extra special, like all Dad’s do. You wrote a lovely post, that he would be very proud of. It is never easy to lose a parent, I lost my Dad in 2001, and I still miss him. Remember the good times that you shared.
Lisa EJune 13, 2016 at 8:09 pm
Rejoicing that he is with Jesus doesn’t lessen the pain of your loss and for this I am sorry. Praying for His perfect peace for you and your family during this difficult time. Virtual hugs.
KathyJune 13, 2016 at 8:40 pm
A friend of mine lost her mother to the same thing…a UTI that developed into sepsis in a very quick period. So scary. Praising God with you that your bonus dad knew Jesus.
LoriJune 13, 2016 at 8:51 pm
Oh Kristi! Losing a parent is so hard, especially a bonus parent!! I have been there! I lost my mom 1981, my stepmom in 2013, and my dad in 2015. I was blessed to have had two moms — mine for 21 years and my stepmom for 32 years. Sending you lots of love and hugs and prayers!!
JackieJune 13, 2016 at 9:48 pm
Big hugs to you all. xx
Mark TisdaleJune 14, 2016 at 4:43 am
Awww, Kristi – so sorry for your loss. Some of your story was eerily familiar. My Dad had a stroke back in March of this year. After a week in the hospital he was discharged to rehab to work on regaining the ability to use the left side of his body. A couple of weeks later, my Mom and I started noticing that he seemed down on our visits. We mistook it for depression but we would shortly understand it was a UTI. There were no other symptoms at first. No fevers. He didn’t say he felt bad. He was just not quite himself but after a stroke, it wasn’t obvious. By the time they caught on to what was happening, his kidneys had all but shut down. I’m honestly amazed he’s still with us. That evening and several more times in the weeks that came, I wasn’t so sure. He spent another three weeks in the hospital, also ended up with blood clots in his lungs. He’s been back in rehab a few weeks now but is only just beginning to get even remotely close to where he was after the initial stroke. It’s truly amazing how horrible a UTI can be on someone who is older and/or already weakened. I never would have guessed either had we not seen it first hand. It seems like one of those things they should warn people to watch for with older/sick relatives.
Anyway, take care!
MelonyJune 14, 2016 at 5:14 am
My prayers are with you and your family. No words can help, just know we are all praying for you.
MelanieJune 14, 2016 at 6:41 am
Condolences on your loss. One way to look at this is how blessed y’all were to have him after the loss of your dad. My dad died at age 48 and my mom has been alone all the time since.(30 years and counting) It would have been great for Mom to have found a wonderful partner
Lesley AnnJune 14, 2016 at 8:29 am
So sorry to hear about your bonus dad passing.
KarenJune 14, 2016 at 8:36 am
I am so sorry for your loss.
PamJune 14, 2016 at 8:50 am
I am so sorry for the loss of your bonus dad. It seems as though you were loved, and loved in return, a blessing in every sense of the word.
Bettina EsserJune 14, 2016 at 9:41 am
I had not seen postings for a while and now know why. My deepest sympathy for your loss and prayers for you and your family in this time of healing. You write beautifully and through your words, the reader really can feel that special presence of the step-dad you loved so much. May he rest in the grace of God’s love.
Eleanor BertinJune 14, 2016 at 10:38 am
I am so sorry for your loss! You’ve written about your Dad so beautifully. It gives me hope that when my 88 year old Dad who has had Parkinson’s for the past 25 years reaches the end, we might have a small piece of him back after all the years of expressionless face and silence, however briefly. Thank you for sharing this and may God comfort and strengthen you and your family as only He can!
REBECCA HeinzerothJune 14, 2016 at 10:54 am
Have been in your shoes. Lean on Jesus. We miss you but you are worth waiting for.
LisaJune 14, 2016 at 10:56 am
Kristi, I have only relatively recently started following your blog, which is something I don’t generally do but I was particularly attracted by your creative style and have now also come to feel like I have got to know you a little through your talent for expressing with words what is happening with you. I am a long way away in Uk, and in reality I don’t know you, but I read your post with tears, I’m so sorry for your loss. we have had exactly this scenario…uti/sepsis/care home so I know how shocking it can be for the relatives when it happens so fast and so unbelieveably. Take care and comfort yourself with all the fond memories you no doubt have. Best wishes from across the pond x
NancyJune 14, 2016 at 11:06 am
With much sympathy I send a heartfelt message to you as you grieve for your b dad. It is so hard to lose someone you love. Peace be with you and your family.
BeccaSJune 14, 2016 at 11:07 am
I am SO sorry! I did not know the severity of a UTI and am so sorry that this happened to your sweet bonus dad. My heart hurts for your mom as well. So glad you have a strong family unit to lean on.
TirsaJune 14, 2016 at 2:20 pm
Oh Kristi, I’m so sorry! My daddy died of complications with Parkinson’s too. Let’s just hug and cry together. Words are unnecessary…
DarcyJune 14, 2016 at 3:22 pm
My prayers are with you and your family!!
ShariJune 14, 2016 at 9:42 pm
I’m so sorry for your deeply personal loss. I’m sure you all being with him during those difficult days gave him much comfort. And to have those two special days is truly a gift for you all. Prayers for comfort and peace to you all.
Barbara H.June 15, 2016 at 1:14 pm
Everyone has said it all so well. Thank you for sharing this devastating journey and enlightening so many of as to the threat of UTIs. You and your family are in my thoughts as you begin this next leg of the journey.
Alia SaraJune 16, 2016 at 12:12 am
I wish you and your family.
JenniferJune 16, 2016 at 8:24 pm
I am so sorry for your loss. My thoughts and prayers are with you and your family. I am glad that the Lord blessed you with a couple of days of clarity with him that you can cherish forever. Take care.
JudyJune 17, 2016 at 7:16 am
Always difficult to lose a family member, bonus or otherwise, much loved or not so much. I am so sorry for your loss and send many thoughts and prayers to surround you and uplift you in the coming hard days and months as you adjust to a new “normal” whatever that may be. Bless you, Kristi.
Ellen W.June 18, 2016 at 9:45 am
I am so sorry for your loss. You were lucky to have a bonus dad in your life, if only for too short a while.
CB MacDuffJune 20, 2016 at 5:25 pm
Oh my, I am so heartbroken for your entire family. There simply are no words to use that have not already been used, so I will just offer my thoughts and prayers for your family and especially your dear mom. I cannot imagine what she is going through after now having to tread these waters now twice in her lifetime.
May God watch over you all and keep you safe.
Kathy OwenJune 25, 2016 at 9:24 am
Oh Kristi, That is so sad. He was blessed to have such a wonderful loving family. Saying prayers.
Christine MarekJuly 1, 2016 at 9:46 pm
It has been a bit since being to your site. I am so sorry for you,your Mom, and all the family. Jon was blessed to be so cared for and loved by so many.
My Mom had Multi Fauceted Vascular Dementia, Parkinson’s being part of that horrid disease. She suffered on going UTI’S and her behavior was drastic each time it went in high gear. The things she said and did was so opposite of who she was normally. After having been present with the “3 day ” rebirth before passing is really something. My Mom was in deep coma for 3 weeks then woke one day talking normal which she had not done in 3 years. My Dad did the same thing before dying from COPD, as did his wife who died of cancer. I have witnessed this “God’s gift to loved ones” at least 6 tines now. It gives family and friends that joyful time before they pass.
I will keep you all in prayer in the days,weeks and months ahead as you grieve your beloved bonus Dad. Hold the joyful times close in this time ahead.