Journeying with Jill

For five years after the death of my sister Christine, I had many interactions with my youngest sister Jill. Jill passed from this life on March 25, 2019 on the feast of the Annunciation. Those years were difficult for both my sister Jill and myself. The posts on this page chronicle the declining health of my sister and the changes in my attitudes toward her.

From Jill’s birth to her early death at the age of 62, Jill had many health problems. Unknown to even the doctors, Jill was born with four kidneys. In her infancy contracting a cold caused a high fever and convulsions which led to Jill being hospitalized. Eventually the fever subsided and Jill was released from the hospital after having lain in ice water for several days to bring down the fever. The illness and high fever damaged Jill’s teeth and may have caused some injury to her brain. Jill did not begin to speak until about the age of four. This issue caused her to be behind in school and followed her throughout her life.

As a teenager Jill not only started smoking but developed diabetes which plagued her the rest of her life. Jill passed away after spending several years on dialysis, a treatment that kept her alive after her kidneys failed. For those who are unaware dialysis is a life saver but it also steals away a life. The patient’s life depends upon a machine to clean the blood, causing mental and physical problems. Jill’s cause of death was kidney failure.

As someone who is not diabetic, who has struggled to keep my weight at a normal level, has never smoked and is physically active, it was difficult for me to accept that Jill was not responsible for what happened to her. No matter how hard Jill tried, she could never quit smoking although she had decreased the number of cigarettes smoked per day. Diabetes makes it almost impossible to lose weight which Jill desperately needed to do.

Over the course of 5 years I came to recognize the strength of character and the courage of my youngest sister. We all have blind spots. We all are failures with some part of our lives. No one is perfect. Spending time with Jill taught me to be kinder and more accepting of the struggles which we all face. I miss my youngest sister, her wit, her crazy attitudes and just her presence.

Jill

Jill is back in the hospital. She was scheduled for a hysterectomy for uterine cancer, but blood tests revealed that her blood count was very…

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Thoughts about Jill

A week or so before Jill passed, while she was in the hospital for the last time, Jill told me that she had seen our…

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Update on Jill

John called me yesterday to tell me that Jill will be going to a nursing home for 10 days, as she cannot orally take the…

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Jill’s diagnosis

Jill had a biopsy of her uterus a couple of weeks ago. She has been losing weight and has had bleeding and cramping as well.…

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Jill once more

(This was posted just a week or two before Jill died.)As you know Jill has been very ill for a long time. She was hospitalized…

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So Much Tragedy in One Life

Jill was hospitalized last Friday after falling out of bed at the nursing home. When she arrived in the Emergency Room, it was discovered that…

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Jill’s passing

Jill passed from this life today just after 1pm. I was in her room, talking with Shannon, a kind woman who had met Jill and…

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Jill, once again

Jill has had another episode where she began to hold water, lost oxygen and ended up in the hospital. Again I rushed to the hospital,…

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Jill in Cedar Park

Jill is now in a nursing/rehab in Cedar Park. She was not answering her phone or room phone, so I went there. Her bed was…

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Jill again

I received a call from John this afternoon. He said that he needs to buy a van to transport Jill, but doesn’t have the money.…

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Mark 2:13

“He went out again beside the sea; and all the crowd gathered about him, and he taught them”. When I read this this morning, it…

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Jill has fallen again

John called me yesterday, as I was preparing for luncheon guests. He said Jill had fallen and was being taken to Seton Williamson. I visited…

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Jill’s further adventures

After a week of having a regular dialysis appointment, I felt confident that this stage of Jill’s life was going okay. Then today, while I…

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News on Jill

After being so angry with Jill yesterday because I thought she was lying to me, that she had gotten another high interest loan, she called…

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Jill conditions

Today Jill and her friend John came for a short visit. I had invited them to spend some time with us on Christmas, but since…

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