Becoming Jill: Adventures in Adulthood


A New Chapter
September 9, 2010, 8:29 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Denzel Barkley 1914-2010

My wonderful Grandma Denzel passed away this evening. She had been very peaceful all afternoon, and as her breaths came more slowly, she simply drifted away. My mom, step-sister, and I were all in the room with her, and it was so quiet that it took a while to realize that she wasn’t going to take another breath. While I am sad for us all to lose her, I am so glad that this long journey is over, and she’s on to a new chapter.

At one point in the afternoon, she looked up with a wonderful smile, and lifted her hand to the ceiling. While I wasn’t there to witness it, I feel better knowing that she saw something that made her so happy and peaceful. I am so glad that her death was quiet and calm, and that she didn’t linger any longer as a shell of her formal self. I hope everyone I love will be so lucky.



Chapter 13: In Which I Care for the Elderly. Back Spasms Occur.
September 6, 2010, 8:04 pm
Filed under: Uncategorized

Wow, quite a lot has been happening in my life since my last post… Here’s a brief summary:

  • I spent a week on the Coats Farm, helping take care of my Papa. He had hip replacement surgery in May, and hasn’t been recovering the way he should. I helped Grandma around the house, and drove them to many, many doctor appointments and physical therapy sessions. Thankfully, Papa is doing better now! Word on the street is that he can even get in the car by himself! He’s also back to driving, so if you see someone driving 40 mph on the interstate, wave hi to my Papa.
  • While I was hanging out on the farm, my cousin Adam got married! While I feel that I am not old enough to have a cousin who’s diapers I changed get married, apparently he doesn’t agree 😉 His new wife, Ashley, is lovely, and we are all so happy to have her join the crazy family.

freshly married!

  • I went back to Minnesota for about 2 weeks to try and find a job. My stupid laptop crashed AGAIN, so one week of that time was spent computerless, with no access to my files, which were floating around in online backup storage. The good news: computer is again fixed, with no cost to me. The bad news: this laptop is not even 4 months old, and has had 3 motherboards, 3 hard drives, 3 sets of memory, and 3 power cords. Blarg.
  • While I was in MN, my awesome friends Karen and Sarah ran a triathlon! I am so incredibly proud of both of them– they finished right under 2 hours, which I think is amazing for first-timers!

me with my favorite triathletes!

  • I came back to Missouri a week ago to help Mom and Larry take care of Larry’s mom. She’s definitely in the final stage of life, but there’s no way of knowing how much longer she’s going to hang on. She’s essentially bed-bound, and barely eating anything. It’s a 2-person full-time job caring for her, so it’s easier to have 3 people rotating. Unfortunately, I had a bad back spasm after lifting her on Saturday, and have been pretty much useless ever since. On the upside, this means I get to take my mom’s excellent muscle relaxers, so I spend lots of time giggling and meowing at my cats. Gotta take your excitement where you can find it in this house…

Grandma Denzel has an airing on the porch

  • I drove up to the Venter Farm yesterday to spend time with that set of grandparents. Had a good visit, but the drive made my back worse! Alas.
  • Not sure how much longer I’ll be here, but at least through next weekend I think. The job search continues in my downtime, and I keep crossing my fingers that I’ll find something soon. The bills keep mounting up, and I have no way to pay them. It’s rather stressful. I heard on NPR that unemployment in my age bracket is 39%. Yikes!
  • My mom’s chickens and duckies are growing up! Here’s a pic of my favorite ducky. I named her Jemima Puddle-Duck! She is very bossy, and likes to chase Rocky The Rooster.

Miss Jemima Puddle-Duck