Thank You

I wish to thank all that commented on the “Beloved Susan” post. The comments were greatly appreciated. I knew that Susan reached a lot of people through the blog, but I had no idea how far reaching it was.

I apologize for not posting earlier, but please forgive me. It is still difficult for me to sit down and put my thoughts into to the post. I find it almost impossible to type through the tears. But, life on the bayou goes on.

Susan was a beautiful person, and her faith was reflected in everything she did. She always had a ready smile and kind word for all. I don’t know if you are familiar with the song “What faith Can Do” by a group called Kutless. They have a video of the song on You Tube. I don’t know how to put a link to it. But it is a beautiful song, and shows just what can be accomplished by one’s faith.

Our daughter Stacie put together a collage (I pray that I’m calling it by the right term) of pictures with Susan in them. (if I learn how to embed pictures in the post, I’ll post a picture of it.) Also with the photos there is a poem that Stacie placed in the middle. Stacie did a beautiful job on it. I’d like to share the poem with you.

God Took Her To His Loving Home

God saw her getting tired, a cure was not to be.
He wrapped her in his loving arms and whispered ‘Come with me.’
She suffered much in silence, her spirit did not bend.
She faced her pain with courage, until the very end.
She tried so hard to stay with us, but her fight was not in vain.
God took her to his loving home, and freed her from her pain.

Susan touched so many individuals in her life. She touched me thirty six years ago, and I thank the Good Lord that she did. She still touches me today. She is, and will be always, in my heart.


Beloved Susan

was called by the Lord on Memorial Day, May 26th. Susan passed away surrounded by loved ones. Our loss here on Earth is certainly heaven’s gain.

I’m her husband Ernie. I have wrestled with my feelings about posting to the blog, but feel that I owe it to those who follow her blog.  I know so many out there read her blog, as I did.  

We held a memorial service for Susan Saturday, June 15, here at the community center in Burkett. It was incredible the number of individuals who attended. There was standing room only.  She loved Burkett, and that community center.

Our beautiful Granddaughter had asked to read something she had written concerning Susan’s passing.   I would like to share this with you as it so appropriate.

For Grandma Susan,

I miss my Grandma Susan.

Sometimes remembering can be the most painful part of death. We want to remember what someone meant to us without the influence of the looming dread we felt over the inevitability of their death coloring our memory. We want to forget the pain and suffering we witnessed and felt too, ourselves, and piece by piece we block out what hurts the most and paint over the bad while the good heals us.

One of Grandma Susan’s favorite saying was “This too shall pass,” and the phrase did not fail to make its way to my ears only weeks before she herself passed away. It’s a painful memory that I will carry with me always, and something that I sometimes wish hadn’t been said because wrestling between hopefulness and reality isn’t easy, but her words rang with the truth.

This too shall pass.

We know Grandma Susan was not alone because she took a piece of all of us when she left, but one day we will be whole again.

Her time came not because she was weak, but because she’d been strong for too long.

Her strength, her spirit, and her memory will live on through us, and the lessons we learned from her are the very same that I hope to pass on myself someday.

This too shall pass,

and one day we will be strong again.

With the passage of time the pain will diminish, the love never will.

Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted. Matthew 5:4

As Emylee said it so well—“This too will pass”

Do you know how boring it is….

to be in a hospital bed and unable to do anything?

Had this horrible nagging cough since the last bout of radiation.    Kept getting worse, so Sunday night saw us in the ER in Abilene.   Seems I found me a nasty case of pneumonia.   They’ve got me on high powered antibiotics and breathing treatments.  Looks like I’ll probably be here at least another 2-5 days while they try to clear it up and run more tests.

It’s the pits to not be able to breathe.   If I get up to move around the room,  it almost brings me to my knees as my legs get  weak and I’m fighting for oxygen.

Stacie came in Sunday night and is staying with the herd.  Ernie is running back and forth between home and the hospital.  And me,  I’m just sucking on the oxygen, picking through bad hospital food, and praying for relief.

On a positive note….remember the chemo problem…well,  the Dr’s office appealed their decision and the meds have been approved.   Should have them tomorrow.   Cannot start them till the current issues are cleared up, but at least,  we’ll have them available as soon as I’m cleared to start taking them.

Time to lay back down.

Susan ~ Patchkat


They grow up so quickly!

10309203_851642104851074_8264692689950069945_nHow did this young lady grow so fast?   I remember when she was TINY!!!

Congrats Allie Kat on all your sports medicine training and that new job.   Keep up the good work!

Love you muchly,  G’ma




Susan ~ Patchkat

Insurance battles continue :-(

The oncologist issued a prescription almost 3 weeks ago for a new cancer treatment….which my current insurance provider has denied.    I will never understand why we have given our insurance companies and our government this kind of control over our health and lives.

You have a patient with known, proven cancer running wild….and a drug that could possible halt that progression at the very least.   And yet,  some desk bound twirp with a pencil gets to review the case for the insurance company…and says…patient doesn’t need to be treated with this drug…and denies the claim.   Wouldn’t one think that the oncologist would have a better idea of what drugs might possibly work to provide a better quality of life?   Maybe to halt the progression and buy more time?

I am so disgusted with the whole medical field….there has to be a better way.    Granted,  I’m the patient at the end of the road on the denial…and I understand the medication is going to run about $10,000 per month and the insurance company doesn’t want to pay up….

Within 2 weeks,  I will go on Medicare with a new Part D (prescription program).    We get to start the process all over with a whole different insurance group…who knows where that’s going to lead.  Please keep us in prayer.

I hear about socialized medicine, but after talking to international friends,  I’m not sure that’s the best option available either.   They cannot get the level of treatment, some of the newer testing and medications aren’t even available for them.   When we were talking about Gamma Knife surgery,  that wasn’t even an option for the friend with brain cancer.   What a horrible shame that we cannot have a level playing field and share techniques, new treatments, drugs, and advancements in the medical field across international borders.  How many lives could ultimately be saved?  Maybe that’s the problem.   They would just as soon those of us with terminal diseases just curl up and die so they don’t have to treat us…save that money,  to hell with saving lives.

Anyhow,   I’m on a rant today.  Just totally hacked over insurance doings.

Susan ~ Patchkat




Our neighbors called about 9:45PM to say they could hear a cat crying…and had heard it earlier in the day but been unable to find the source.   Ernie got dressed, grabbed a flashlight, said a prayer and headed out to hunt down the cat.

The neighbor joined in the search with another huge light.   They tracked the cry down to a huge rock water cistern that used to hold purified Bayou water for the town.   As soon as Ernie started calling,  Blaze started answering….LOUDLY!   It took another trip to the neighbor’s house for a huge ladder which they dropped down the cistern.   Blaze wouldn’t climb it, so Ernie climbed down to rescue him.

By the time Ernie had Blaze out,  I had caught up to them somewhat and started yelling.  Blaze jumped down and made a bee-line to me.   I carried him home, checked him out…looks no worse for his week’s entrapment ordeal.   Once again,  we come to the Lord in thanks for HIS compassion and mercy.  We are so thankful to have Blaze back.

We did let Blaze out late last night as he was wanting to get back outside…and this morning,  he was the first one in when the door opened.   All we can think of is that something chased him into that cistern and he couldn’t jump high enough to get out.   The coyotes have been really bad lately…just thankful that they didn’t have Blaze on the menu!

Susan ~ Patchkat


Trying to get healthy around here – NOT

Just finished a 10 day course of radiation in Abilene yesterday.  Sure glad to have that done.  The treatments really wear me out, but add 2 hours worth of driving after working most of the day….you end up with one exhausted cookie.   Therefore,  I’ve been missing in action again.

I will say that it feels like the radiation has helped my right hip some.   Jury is still out on the back/rib area.   Still have the big knot on the back of my skull and it’s pretty tender.   Praying these issues will all resolve themselves and with the Lord’s grace,  I can move on to living my life normally for awhile.   Apparently insurance hasn’t approved the new chemo drug yet, so we’re still in limbo on that.

We went to Winters, TX last weekend for a “Save the Memories Day”…had Tractor Olympics,  a couple of bands belting out music, a quilt show and a parade of old cars, tractors and fire trucks.   They are raising monies to put a new roof on their beloved old Rock Hotel.   Hoping they did well!   We looked through the exhibits,  had some hot dogs and enjoyed ourselves greatly.   Oh…we DID get to visit with Wanda and her husband, Charles!   That was the best part!

Had lunch with a good friend from the Baird Housing Authority today!   Was great visiting with you Ronda!  Let’s do it again soon.  Prayers for your Mom’s continued recovery.

The weather front has been mixed blessings the past week or so…we’ve had 93 degree days…and 26 degree nights.   Ernie has covered/uncovered plants until he’s tired of messing with them.   The wild plum and the pecans had already flowered when the freeze hit, so we’re figuring nothing there for another year.   However,  his tomato and  potato plants  look good.    We’ve had a tiny bit of rain and a couple of drizzly mornings with much cooler temperatures.  That’s really good for the lettuces and spinach.

I thought we were down to 1 rooster and 1 hen, but there are still 2 hens running with the rooster.   That’s a good thing.  I wish we had about 20 more hens out there and a coop!   Ernie got some more chicken scratch and the doves came back.   Guess they don’t like the cat food like the chickens do :-)    Those guys will come up on the deck for cat food…and brave the cats!

Speaking of cats….Ernie put Blaze out the other night (normal thing) and we haven’t seen him since.  Hoping he hasn’t run afoul of a predator.   If he’s gotten hurt,  maybe he’s holed up somewhere till he regains his strength.  Just makes us sick though.   That’s the trouble with kitties allowed to go outside.  You cannot protect them 24/7.

Now,  maybe I’ve got you caught up on life on the Bayou!


Susan ~ Patchkat