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Spouse or Partner Caregiver Forum
Just need to talk to my friends
I just have the need to talk to my friends on this forum. I know all of you will understand. I don't have anyone else to talk with except my sister and I don't want to bother her.
I'm really worried about Ray. The last two days he has had trouble getting out of his recliner and bed. He has fallen four times in less than 24 hours. I found a quad cane he had and have had him use it to steady himself when he gets up and that has helped. He says his knee hurts but I'm afraid he could be the poor ciriculation in his legs. I haven't heard anything from the doctors at the VAMCOCO about his appointment Monday. It would be such a hard trip on him - 5 hours on the road and the long wait at the hospital. If I don't hear by Friday, I think I'll make an appointment with a good vascular physician in Tulsa. It really scares me.
Another thing that bothers me - Ray has smoked since he was 15 years old - several cigars a day for the past years. The last few days he has hardly smoked at all. He has been smoking his pipe a little and has to be reminded about how to put the tobacco in. He hasn't smoked more than parts of two cigars today. It worries me because my mother had AD and she also smoked. About a month before she passed away she forgot about smoking and wasn't interested in smoking at all.
He doesn't seem to know what things are. I can ask him to hand me something across the end table and he might hand me something else entirely. I know he's very hard of hearing but this seems to be something else.
He constantly spits his food out when he's eating. I know he snacks in the bathroom but most of the time he doesn't eat more than half of his meal. I did make an appointment with the dentist for next Friday to see if it might be his dentures. Swallowing seems all right - his PCP didn't seem to think that was the problem. She thinks it's part of AD.
He's also seems to be sleeping more. He got up at 11:30 today and at 4 pm. was ready to sleep some more. He may be up at 3 a.m. tonight.
Just so much - and it scares me to death. I just came in from feeding the cats and cows and thought about how awful and lonely it would be without him. I don't think I could stand it. There are no close relatives around except a couple fo cousins that I hardly ever see. My sister and niece is in OKC. My niece was diagnosed with MS and is home and is slowly recovering. She has begun PT at Jim Thorpe. She is able to do some things but has her own problems. My sister is 80. Ray's sister and brother are in late 70s and 80+ and 8 hours away.
I'm sorry that I've gone on so long but I just had to get it down in black and white - maybe that will help me some. Life is so hard. When you're young you don't think about it but when you get to be 70+ with a husband or wife who has AD or some other awful disease, it's so much worse.
Sorry if I've brought any of you down - not my intention at all. Just had to get my worries out of my system.
On the lighter side - the two babies are thriving and growing. I plan to let them and their moms out in tihe pastures tomorrow. One more to go - Ruby.
I don't have anything positive to write about other than I read your post and empathize with you. I examine every little thing that's different with Deane each day looking for some sign of, I guess, the beginning of the end.
It's like heading for the end of the road and knowing it's up ahead but looking for signs so we can be ready. Like you, I don't know what I will do when she is gone. But my hope and faith is that if I am left behind, the Lord will make it plain what I am to do next with what's left of my life on this earth. But how can we plan when we don't know what the future holds.
But He knows.....
Good evening Larry,
Thanks for your reply - it helped.
I've often thought that Ray and I should go together when it's his time. This may be the wrong thing to think but sometimes I do. When you're with someone for over much more than half your life you don't know how you'll go on. So, sometimes I think I won't. I think sometimes that when I'm sure his end time is near, I'll find a very high cliff and go from there. However, that would be very hard to do in this part of the country - not many hills.
I'll get over this - I'm just in a funky mood right now. I guess dealing with this every day and each new thing that happens makes one feel this way. I did go out and sit under a tree for a bit but RayLo called and I had to get him back to his mom. Ray's asleep so maybe I'll go out and sit on the porch (still a little bit scared of mosquitos).
Again, thanks, Larry - good to know someone is out there who knows what I'm going through.
I hope Deane is doing well. I need to get my Bible out and read a bit. Wish we could get back into Church but Ray wouldn't be patient enough to sit through it and I can't leave him. I'll start watching some of the sermons on TV - that should help me some.
Lorita, I'm sorry things are going bad lately. I'll give you a reason to stick around, which is the same reason I stick around--the animals.
I credit my mother's 2 dogs for me still being here today, I really do. They need to be taken care of, so many days that's the reason I get up in the morning.
Medically, I'm not at all sure what's going on with him, but I agree with your plan to take him to Tulsa if the VA doesn't get back to you.
The smoking--I wonder if he is coming down with something, like a stomach bug--sometimes people just don't feel like smoking when they are.
Would the pastor of your church be willing to pay you a visit at home? Many times they will if the person needing spiritual assistance can't get out of the house.
You're right - someone will have to take care of the animals - Barclee gets eyedrops three times daily plus all the others.
I'm just feeling down right now - I'll get over it.
I can still take Ray to the OKCVA but it's so far and the trip is so hard. I've decided that even if we do go, which I doubt, and he needs surgery I'll have it done on the outside - like we did for his cataract extractions.
Maybe he's just not feeling good and will snap out of it - I hope.
Our Church is a small country Church with no full-time preacher. The men in the Church alternate giving the sermons. Thanks for the suggestion, though. I don't think Ray would be recepetive to something like that. If someone does come, he gets very impatient after a few minutes and wants them to leave.
I'll be fine - tomorrow is another day. Think I'll listen to a BeeGees or Beatles CD. That'll improve my mood.
Thank you for listening.
soft hugs to you!!! I wish I knew how to encourage and comfort you. You are such an amazing person with a beautiful, incredible heart. I hope tomorrow is a better day. Again, hugs to you...
I am just reading your post and feel so horrible for you. Wish I could wrap my arms around you and hold you tight.
When it is bad it is so frightening....no one can make that not happen. It just is overwhelmingly frightening.
If you start to cry please let out all the tears. I have a feeling you do not let yourself "loose control" but sometimes it can help to fall apart. If Ray finds you crying just tell him you stubbed a toe.
If at all possible get a UTI test done. Dick had no symptoms except being tired and not wanting to eat and he landed in the hosp for 2 weeks. Any Urgent Care can do one. Or the closest ER.
If you need me in OKC I will do my best to help anyway I can.
For right now put one foot in front of the other and never forget we are with you.
I will check on you later!!!!!
yes, we both have anxiety tonight. I sometimes find that the next day brings some answers. I, too, feel pretty alone in this battle and the unknown is so frightening. I, too, wonder if Ray is just not feeling well and that is why the appetite and smoking is not what you normally see. My animals are such a source of peace for me. I think it helps to put down your feelings and it's especially good when I find someone else who's going through the same thing. Still, I don't know what to do with the changes I'm seeing in my husband. Hope tomorrow will bring a path for you to follow.
I am rather new to this board and other than my original post, I have not responded to anyone. But, as I was reading your message, it so touched me. I do feel your distress and sadness. I too wonder how I could possibly go on alone after almost 50 yrs. of marriage. I will have to believe that the Lord will give me strength to face that when it comes. He is the only strength and comfort we can depend on. It is so hard to think about. I think for me the holdays make me more introspective also. It is only natural to think back to younger days when this disease was not part of our lives. I will be praying for you and your dear Ray. May you both feel His peace.
I was somewhat familiar with Tulsa from 1988-2001. Our daughter graduated from ORU so I was there many times. I really liked Tulsa back then. I imagine it has changed quite a bit over the years.
Enjoy your animals and please remember you are not alone.
Lorita - you are one strong lady, and I truly do know how you feel. Every day another piece of Jim seems to disappear. And, like you, I know I'm losing him piece by piece. I never expected this to happen to him and to me, but it has.
We've been married almost 47 years. I thought having our first son have Down Syndrome was the worst thing that could happen, but it wasn't. He's doing just great. I wish I had words of wisdom, but know that here in PA you have someone who understands and cares. This forum has become a touchstone for me, a way not to feel alone. I too still love the Beatles and their music still comforts me.
Like all of us, you will go on. You have given compassion and strength to all of us. My prayers go to you.
Dear Lorita, my heart goes out to you. I do so understand exactly how you are feeling. My husband's memorial service was held on our 48th anniversary. Not planned that way, it just turned out like that. And yes, I wondered many times over the last few years how I would ever manage to go on without him. But you know what? God is giving me the strength to do what needs to be done. Through His grace, I am able to put one foot in front of the other. And I will continue to do so for as long as He wants me to stay on this earth.I have had significant health problems for years. And through out the years, I prayed that I would be the first one to go. I just knew my husband would be so much better able to cope and to go on alone than I would. But it seems God had other ideas. And for the last few years, my prayers changed, asking that I be allowed to stay on this earth, because it was so obvious that I needed to take care of him. I had no idea I was strong enough to do this, to go through the Hell that is watching a loved one being completely taken over by Dementia. But apparently I am, and you are, too! !Yes, you have "down" days. We all do. And yes, it is so hard not knowing what the future will bring. But in all fairness, do we ever really know that? No. We know what we 'plan' for the future, what we 'hope' for the future. But not what the future will actually be.The only saving grace here that I can see is simply that, as they descend farther and farther down into the depths of their dementia, they do not know they are suffering. At least I hope and pray they don't!
I miss my husband terribly. But do I want him back? No, not in the condition he was in! If we could go back 20 years, then yes! But as a patient (victim) of Alzheimer's? NO! ! Tomorrow will be a better day for you Lorita. You are strong, you are good, and you have faith in God.
You are in my thoughts and prayers.Rusty
Oh dear one I'm so sorry you are going through such a time. I also, have been feeling down tonight. Hubby thinks its august, did not know whose truck was in our yard (his), didn't like his supper (which he normally does like that meal) was in bed by 8 tonite. (he is a 4/5) I dread the next stage, always wondering when it will "hit", Then I read your post - and know you are dealing with so much more than I am right now. I have already wondered what I would do alone. But remember, we are never really alone - God is our strength, our refuge, our fortress. He is our help in our troubles, which seem to be many. I pray he guides us all as we go on this journey and thereafter.
I raise a few puppies (have a small kennel) only sell to individuals, no stores/brokers etc. And those furbabies of mine really help me. So now we all know why God brought the animals to earth, it had to be to help us caregivers, lol.
You take care~ hugs!
Lorita, my dear friend, take heart. We are all here to buoy you up. We've all seen changes in our spouses that we don't understand. My feeling has always been that it's the various aspects of the disease that cause most of these changes. And some changes come and go, so hang in there. Any infection, not just UTI's, can cause drastic changes, at least in my DH.
And as for being alone, I can give you some first hand experience about that. . First I slept, a lot, then I read the mail that's been piling up, then the emails, then fixed the shower, mended the flag that was ripped in all those winds we had - you get the idea. When I got caught up on all the chores, get the barn cleaned and, oh yes, tidy up the house, then I'll think about what I want to do with what's left of my life.
I don't mean to minimize your legitimate questions, but you've been doing what needs to be done for a long time now, and I suspect that's what you'll continue to do. We'll all be with you on whatever journeys you take. And here's to a swift, safe birth for Ruby. Many, many hugs to you!!!
Love from your old friend Lizella
Dearest Lorita: I am so sorry for what is happening and for the heartache it is bringing. You are one of those wonderful people that are truly the salt of the earth and you have been doing so much for so long - you never fail to amaze me.
You will find your equilibrium as that is your nature, but there are times that grief and wavering hope visit us and take their due; such happenings appear to be part of this unwanted journey and perhaps this is one of those times. There is naught to be done but to experience it and then to put one foot in front of the other and it will be worked through.
I would love it if you could gain some bit of respite, but considering Ray and the four footed friends, this looks a bit difficult. Lorita; if something happened and you absolutely could not attend to Ray, the animals and farm for a week or so, what arrangements could you safely make?
If you have a "Plan B" for anything such as that, is there any way you could get a bit of that backup soon and try to get a bit of respite for yourself? Well; I am willing to bet not so easily done and you may well worry yourself to a frazzle if you took some "personal" time, but - just asking.
I so wish there were something I could concretely do to be of help. You know, I am mostly concerned with you but I hope it is okay to address the physical part of what is presently occurring with Ray.
First, have you read much on Intermittent Claudication? This is what Ray has in his lower extremities. With an abrupt change in his condition, I do wonder if he needs to be seen sooner rather than later. Abrupt changes are a concern and often are harbingers that something is needing to be addressed by a physician.
I agree that a five hour drive to the VA is not acceptable at this point for either of you, but there are hospitals with emergency rooms that may be much closer where he could be seen. Does he have Medicare as well as a supplemental insurance? This would cover the ER and any workup.
My concern would be that he may have a worsening of the lower extremity issue; perhaps vasospasms, or of great concern - a clot in his leg. Does the affected extremity side feel cold and pale or bluish or does it seem overly warm to hot and reddish? If so, he needs to be seen asap at the closest ER rather than that lengthy drive.
Also, absolutely any infection in the body, whether it is involves his leg, or if he has a UTI will indeed cause the changes in his cognition and usual function. This should be checked out also. Despite all the other issues, the question of the possibility of a small stroke is raised.
Of course, there are the other concerns, electrolyte disturbance or other condition causing his symptoms which bloodwork screening could determine.
As for treatment for his vascular problem, there are more or less minor measures like insertion of stents or using a catheter and widening the blocked areas. If he is beyond that point of help, then the other option would be a surgery and grafting of vessels - the grafting would be a major undertaking for the condition he is now in and may well not be medically appropriate for him, but his doctor will be the one to let you know how things stand so a decision can be reached.
In any case, is there a nearby ER you could bring him to so he could be screened by an MD? If so and especially if he has insurance to cover it, this may well be your better option.
Well dear one, it is 10:30 pm here and it is time for me to tuck it in. You are in my thoughts and in my prayers and I am holding only warmest wishes for you.
Keep us in the loop, you are dear to us and we truly do care.
D ear Lorita,
We've had a busy day here, so we crawled in bed about 11 PM. I hadn't even turned on the computer today. I was worn out but just couldn't sleep for thinking about you and all the rest of our dear compassionate friends and their loved ones who are all at some point on this treacherous journey to WHAT...don't want to think about that......to when .....who can tell? Who knows? Well, I just felt an urgency.... had to get up and go to the computer and your post was the first I read.
Lorita you've been such an inspiration to me since I first logged on. I don't know HOW you do so much with Ray your farm and animals and still have time to give to those of us who need it most at the time. I wish we could all just enclose you in a huge group hug and say ,"We care . We know how you feel. Go ahead...take a few minutes to cry ..or scream ...or cuss a little, dang it! Go way out in the field and just Yell. Scare the cows.
Then gather your strength, cause you'll need it ... and we all know you have it in you.
You've been given a lot of empathy, love and good advice before I came on.
We are all here with you but more importantly , our Lord Jesus said he would NEVER LEAVE YOU or FORSAKE YOU. Have faith in that truth even when you can't see it , believe it. Trust it. Take courage. Keep posting updates when you can . We'll all be watching and praying.
Sue....So Central OK
As I have read your posts over the short time I've been a member here, I have enjoyed your occasional musings upon your daily chores . Sometimes when I'm setting up my dogs for the day (they sleep with me at night) I think how easy I have it compared to you. But then I think again and think what a whole life you have , daily experiencing all the cycles of life, from the birthing of calves to the death of a beloved dog.
I've enjoyed, too, the obvious affection and respect you have for your Ray and your pragmatic approach to dealing with things.
When I read your post yesterday after Ray had fallen and you had helped him get up , I worried. If he has never fallen before and he is falling now, something is clearly going on. If he's usually able to identify objects and he can't now, something is going on. It must be terribly frightening to worry that he will fall again and , perhaps, break an arm or a leg.
I worry with you for his health and safety.
Good morning - all my dear friends,
jfkoc - I'm here and things are better this morning. I did lose it late yesterday and cried a lot and now it seems better.
I want to thank each and every one of you for all your concern and support and good suggestions. I will take each of them to heart and remember them. I am truly blessed to have all of you to listen to my concerns and frustrations - we are all blessed in that we have each other. Even though we don't know each other personally/physically - I feel that I do know all of you through your posts and the terrible things - AD - that we share and go through each day with our loved ones.
I just had a call from the VAHospital in OKC Vascular Unit - a very nice PA who seemed very knowledgeable. We had a long talk and came to the conclusion that we could put off the visit until next spring. She said if I felt he needed to be seen sooner, to call and make an appointment and, if I had a question, to call her and we could discuss it.
She said the pain Ray is having in his left thigh is not related to the vascular problem - symptoms would be in his ankle and foot primarily. Thinks the thigh pain might be a bruise from the fall or some type of injury. Said to have it x-rayed if it persists. She told me what to watch for that would constitute an emergency - ankle or foot turning white, cool or cold to the touch and painful all the time.
Johanna, as you mentioned, she said the imbalance and falling could possibly be attributed to a light stroke or even just worsening of the AD. He doesn't have any other symptoms of stroke but I will watch.
Suggestions were to get him to walk as much as possible and to not smoke since the nicotine constricts the blood vessels. He only smoked part of one or two cigars yesterday and about half of one this morning. I asked about an exercise bicycle and she said that would be all right. I'll look into this when we go to town. His brother had suggested this a couple of weeks ago.
Anyway, we won't make the trip to OKC Monday. She seemed to think, from what I told her, that things were pretty stable. The tests from a month or so ago were not that much worse than from the first of this year.
I feel much better about things this morning. Although I did cry some as I read all of your wonderful notes to me. It really means so much to know that you do care enough to take the time from your busy days to write to me.
I checked Ruby at MN, 2 a.m., 4 a.m., 6 a.m. and several times since then - no baby yet. I did let Hannah and RayLo out along with Rosebud and her baby girl (haven't named her yet). Suggestions appreciated - she's black with a white face and black around her eyes - just like her mom.
I'll go for now, dear friends, and get to my work. Ray has had breakfast along with everyone else, and has gone back to bed for a while.
He had lab work Friday and there was no urinary infection - all the rest was normal, too. I'll watch him closely, try to get him to walk and not smoke (easier said than done).
Thanks again, all is appreciated. I hope all of you have a nice, quiet day. Lizella, I'm glad you're getting some much needed rest and are beginning to feel better about things.
jfkoc - thank you for the offer of help. It means a lot.
I said I was glad you were getting some rest - reread your post and it doesn't sound like you're resting.
Idea - wish I could travel the 1400 + miles to your home and help you clean your barn, then you could come back with me and we'd rent a Bob Cat and clean out our barn. Cleaning a barn is hard work. In the past we'd rent a Bob Cat and Ray would clean it out. The last time our neighbor did it and spread the fertilizer on the pasture with an antique manure spreader we bought. He also put a new bed in it and repaired it and painted it red like it was originally. It sits behind our barn now.
I just took Barclee and went to the mailbox in our Chuck Wagon and came back and checked out the new moms and babies. RayLo was having lunch.
Don't try to do too much too soon - rest a little bit. You've earned it. How is your eye doing?
Guess I'd better go and do dishes and take care of the laundry I have in the dryer. Always something to do.
You have a chuck wagon with a mailbo?. I thought a chuck wagon was for food.
What a relief is must have been to talk to the PA at the VA.
I submit Trudy for a name.
jfkoc: She said she went to the mailbox in the Chuckwagon....
Lorita: I suggest a name for the calf: Bandit (black around eyes).
Everybody have a Happy Thanksgiving...... We do have much to thankful for even if we have to see our LO's with this terrible disease.
Still can not imagine a chuck wagon with a mail box. Call me dense.
jfkoc - the chuck wagon is an off-road utility vehicle that looks kind of like a little pickup - it has a roof and is open on the sides and has a bed - about big enough for two small bales of hay. I use it sometimes to feed the girls - so I guess it is for food. We went to the mailbox in the chuckwagon.
This afternoon, Ray went with me. He's walking quite a lot better this afternoon but I'm still having him use the quad cane to steady himself. I think I'll talk to his PCP about getting a walker to help even more.
Yes, it was a relief to talk with the PA at OKC. She was very patient and took all the time I needed to ask my questions. I really think he may have had a mild stroke. He was all right before bedtime. We went on to bed so I didn't see anything else wrong. Anyway, thank goodness, he is better this afternoon.
We checked the girls before we went to the mailbox and saw the two babies. Rosebud has her baby staked out by one of the creepfeeders but is keeping an eye on her. Looks like they're all going to the meadow for the night - about l/4 mile away. That's quite a long way for the babies to walk.
Bandit sounds like a pretty good name. We have one cow we call Panda because of the black around her eyes.
Watched a little bit of Gone With the Wind a while ago. Talk about having problems.
Everyone, thanks again for your kind words - they helped more than you'll ever know. Hope all of you have a good Thanksgiving. I'm ready for pumpkin pie and whipped cream.
I'm glad things seem a tidge bit brighter this morning and hope all continues along those lines. I'm also glad that the VA Nurse Practitioner spent a good amount of time listening and talking with you, that is most excellent.
And as for naming that sweet new calf-baby; well . . . . . . I always thought that if I had a calf (no kidding), I'd name her, "Princess Buttercup" no matter what color she was.
Being a city girl, I just picture a Disney calf with beautiful big dark eyes and long eyelashes who in the light of the moon prances about with her mother and other bovine friends dancing on their hind hooves. Ah me . . . . have to smile; in my fantasy, my little bovine fairies never, ever leave cow patties either!
Never mind what I picture for a pen full of chubby pink pigs . . . .
So, please let us know how you and Ray are doing, my thoughts and hugs keep on coming your way; and yes, wouldn't it be nice to be able to share a cup of coffee or tea or even a glass of whatever and sit quietly and talk.
Good, good people here.
I so agree Joanna, as I sit here drinking my coffee. Wishing all of you were here to be able to talk about what we are going through. I am so thankful for all of you and the help I receive from all of you. I hope all have a good Thanksgiving and God bless.
My name for the little one would be ringo. I once had a dog with black circles around his eyes.
Johanna - Ray seems quite a bit better. Like I mentioned I had him use a quad cane yesterday to steady himself. Last night he had discarded it so he's walking quit a lot better. I think it was a mild or mini stroke. He had one a few years ago but it was worse. He was in the hospital a couple of days and made a full recovery as far as walking and speech. I was so glad to know that the hurting he had in his left thigh didn't have anything to do with his circulation and what to look for. His daddy died from a blood clot in his leg so he and I both always worry about that.
Your fantasy about Princess Buttercup is so cute - makes one feel good. That would be a wonderful name for a Jersey or Guernsey or even Charlois. There aren't many of those around here - mostly angus and brangus and red angus. The two moms and babies spent the night in what we still call the garden south of our house. That's where we have the liquid feeders, stock tank and where I feed them hay. They got their breakfast and took off with the rest of the herd. I always feel better after they've made it through a couple of nights in the pasture. We have a lot of coyotes and wolves around (we hear them every night) but they don't seem to bother the cattle. I've watch one walk through the herd with no commotion other than the cows watching them. Ruby is all right this morning. Maybe she'll calve today and I'll call the baby Punkin.
My daddy used to raise hogs when I was growing up so I have some experience with them. Ray and I raised a couple years ago - quite an experience. I was well protected from "knowing things" when I was little and one time one of our sows had pigs and I asked daddy where she got them. We were in the barn in the hallway and he found a little hole in the ground covered by a little board. He picked the board up and said "that's where she found them. " I'll never forgot things he told me and taught me about nature and taking care of the land.
Oh, well, now I've gone on too long again. Sorry.
All of the suggested names are good ones. Thanks.
Like ElyVet and you, I wish there was a way we could have hot tea or coffee together and just relax and talk a bit. Such good friends that will probably never meet in person but I do consider each and every one of you newly found friends that I think of often.
Hope everyone has a Happy Thanksgiving. Gotta go make the pumpkin pie.
Happy Thanksgiving, friends! I'm telling myself we have much to be thankful for, and we do, compared to so many others. This morning I was awakened by the birds singing, my favorite alarm. It's cool this morning but supposed to be 50' later.
Lorita, I have to put in my choice for a name: Lady Gaga. Check out her eye makeup and you'll see the resemblance. Of course you might have to outfit her in five inch high heeled shoes, which could be a problem.
I love the name "Punkin" - perfect!
My only experience with hogs was on a farm a relative had . . . well "farm" is a far stretch. I do however, remember the smell - whoooo! I often wondered if the hogs themselves would not want a cleaner place to live rather than living like teabags steeping constantly in their own . . . . . well; you know.
I live in California and when driving north on I-5; there are miles of cattle pens where the cattle are being held to fatten up and send directly to the slaughter house from there.
These pens are a scandal in every sense of the word.
The cattle are rump to nose, shoulder to shoulder (what DO they call shoulders on cows anyway?) and packed in tighter than sardines in a can. They have no room to move whatsoever. One can hear distressed bellows from them. I do not exaggerate. Literally acres of these - it is hellish and I don't understand how those who own the pens can do this.
Of course there are costs and of course there won't be green elysian fields, but what exists is beyond the pale. I would gladly pay more for my meat to provide better for the animals.
The smell reaches one about three mile or so before one comes up to the area and when one does arrive, it actually has eyes watering and noses running. No fib.
I am undone each and every time I see this and have addressed this in writing. The cattle have nothing but dreadfully deep dung to stand in. Not one blade of green, not one tree, not one anything. Hot, hot California sun and driving cold rain in the winter - there they stand in misery. The inability to turn around and move a few steps and the stress they must feel defies adjectives. They suffer.
I am a carnivore, but I do believe if we are going to eat the animals, we should at least be grateful enough to them that we treat them humanely. This particular place is dreadfully inhumane and it shocks me every time I see the cattle in their predicament.
If I were truly a better person, I would become a vegetarian, but alas; I am not that better person. (But for me, it is all about chicken - so they run when they see me - Ha!)
Hugs for taking such good care of all your critters and for being the good person you are in so many ways.
OK...I got it. You went in the chuck wagon to the mailbox. Silly me!
Wonderful that Ray is better.
Good morning and Happy Thanksgiving, everyone,
I typed a long post and touched the wrong key and it disappeared. Maybe I can pare this one down some.
Lizella, I agree with you, we do have much to ber thankful for - even with the AD. We should be thankful, and I am, if I can get out of bed in the morning and do what has to be done. We have freedom to do as we choose, food to eat, a roof over our head and people who care (all of you). Hope you are doing well this morning. I imagine you'll see your husband today.
Johanna - I wholeheartedly agree with you about the feedlots. They are awful, tragic places and I feel so sorry for the calves. We don't have any of them in our part of the state that I knows of - at least around here. Go west and they're abundant. It's sad that they have to go to such places and be fattened to be killed. Years ago, when I did eat meat, we'd try to get daddy to put a calf up to fatten. He'd put it off as long as possible before he'd ever do it. I really didn't understand so much then - but I do now.
I'm a vegetarian and have been for years. People say we're in the wrong business - maybe we are. We talk to our girls like they're people. They were all born here and most are named and we've talked to them since they were burn.
Last fall we culled four cows and sent them along with our calves to the sale. We both hated it so much that I called the salebarn before they were sold and told them we didn't want to sell them. They gave me the number of a trucker and I called him and had him bring the four cows home. They were back home in two hours and happy to be here. They had had a big adventure - a trip to town and a short experience in the pens. It is so very hard for us to sell cows. I don't mind so much about the calves unless it's one I bottlefed.
I wish there was a way to do away with feedlots and also those big chicken houses. There's lots of them in far eastern Okla. and western Arkansas. They're also very sad places.
I always tell myself that our calves are going to good homes to restock herds and start a new life there. I also tell the calves that. I think that is the case most of the time here. Daddy always preferred to sell to an individual here at the farm. We do that as much as we can - it seems easier to see the people who get them. I'm not good at judging weights so I get "taken" some times. Daddy could judge their weights within a couple of pounds. I guess a shoulder is what it's called. Being ai vegetarian I'm not too familiar with cuts of meat. I try to avoid contact with it. I think the chuck steak and roasts come from the shoulder.
Pie's out of the oven and so is the banana bread I made from a recipe from America's Test Kitchen. Wish you were all here to have some with Ray and I. He has just gotten up about an hour ago and is still in the bathroom. Hope he is still better this morning.
Everyone, have a nice day.
Her name is Temple Grandin. I didn't see the show - wish I had. She devised a method for building chutes for cattle that are curved. They tend to want to go back where they were. When we had our corral build several years ago the man build a tub with a big gate that closes and helps move the cattle into the curved chute. Works really well. I can even handle the cattle by myself to get them into the chute.
I agree, cows should eat grass - when they can. Our girls are still grazing but most pastures in our area are grazed out because of lack of rain. This is just about the time of year when ranchers still feeding hay. Our neighbor has been haying for a couple of months already. I gave our girls a couple of bales this morning but they don't seem really interested in it yet. We have quite a bit of grass which they will graze until the weather is really bad except for when they're loafing. Many of the ranchers in Oklahoma don't have enough or barely enough to carry them through the winter - that's why we are hoping for a warmer than normal, wetter than normal one. Persimmon seeds and wooly worms say it will probably be wetter and colder than normal. Not good for animals.
We keep liquid feed out for our girls yearround and medicated creep for the little ones all the time. Usually we feed creep to the cows every other day or every third day and keep hay out all the time. I won't have animals unless we feed them like we should. That's why we just spent $128. on catfood a couple of days ago.
Another of our problems because of the drough is lack of pond water. Many ponds are dried up and people are cleaning out and deepening them. We had our biggest deepened three ore four years ago. All of our ponds have water in them but the two in the west pasture, where the boys are, are getting low. May have to put a stock tank in the pasture and run a long water hose to fill it. We keep three stock tanks filled all the time. It scares me when the ponds are low because if they walk out too far they can get stuck in the mud (like I did three or four years ago). When you run cattle, there's always something to keep you vigilant. But it gets in your blood and you really enjoy it.
Ray's up and walking pretty well. Says he feels okay and ate a good breakfast/lunch.
Hope everyone had and are still having a Happy Thanksgiving.
Henry & I had our Thanksgiving last month with all but one (20yrs old and worked) of our 6 grandchildrens and Henry's 3 children.
Lorita, so happy that Ray is feeling better today. Is see my husband failing in memory everyday- yesterday I spoke to my son who lives here in FL year round and Henry asked who I was talking to- I said Dave and Henry asked who he was and when I told him my son, he asked if he had ever met him- Henry and I have been married for 26yrs and he has known Dave since 2 years before that.
I'm glad you are feeling better than your message 11/20/12 when you mentioned you had no close by relatives.
I have to be very grateful that I have my wonderful grandson (my son Daves son) who is 21 as Henry's grandchildren are young all under 13yrs (exept for the 20 yr old and he as never been close to us)
I have my son Dave but he has ISSUES of his own and do not feel I will be able to depend on him when Henry is gone. Henry's oldest daughter was 21 when we meet and his other 2 children grew up in Seattle and moved back to New Hampshire when they were in their teens and I do not feel even though we get along OK I feel they will go on with own lifes when their father is gone.
I remember the very minutes when I lost my 16 yr old son and the nurse said to me "please believe and realize you will get through this and things will get better" at the time I thought that she was crazy but it was true I guess all of us will get through with the help of faith, family and our family on ALZ connect
jfkoc - we both love pecan pie - Ray likes whipped cream on it. I copy a lot of the recipes from America's Test Kitchen and get around to trying a few. The banana bread was good - needed a little more sugar - recipe called for brown. In the past my banana bread was too moist and heavy. This is better - I'll probably try it again with a little bit more sugar. The pumpkin pie was good. I always have some filling left over that I bake in a ramekin. Ray ate a piece and left the crust so I think from now on I'll just bake the whole thing in a souffle dish and forget the crust.
How is Dick doing by now? Has he started or is doing his PT at Jim Thorpe?
Helen - I'm glad you and Henry are doing all right with the exception of his memory. Thank you, I'm much better than the other day. Sometimes things just pile up and I have to get it out. Especially when I begin to think about how things used to be and won't be again.
I'll be glad when the holidays are over - I've never really liked Christmas - is that unAmerican? Oh, I did when I was a little kid but not for a long time. I think my favorite holiday is July 4th.
Everyone have a nice, quiet evening and night. Think we'll go to bed early - it's been a long day.