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bbira last won the day on June 15 2010

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  1. Happy Holidays to all of Bill's old friends still fighting the fight and also taking time to share your experiences with the fight against this fiendish disease. I see some "old" faces that remain in my heart and mind. You've all been so kind to me with your words of love and encouragement. I know that Bill remains close to all of you and I hope that his spirit remains somewhere among all of these words of enlightenment and encouragement. Hello John, our friend in Canada, Eileen, Marcia,..where's Tonya, Em, Sue, and so many others who's names may be forgotten but who's kind words and great stories will live in our hearts for all time. For those who remember Bill, a short update on our lives since his passing. Our oldest, Erin, is to be married next summer. She's marrying a young man she met while both were volunteering in Haiti with the Jesuit Volunteer Corps. Our middle child, Rachel, as I may have mentioned, has had some difficulties in her young adulthood. She delivered a beautiful baby boy, Nicholas, last December 30, so we have much to celebrate this year. Wouldn't you know, he looks so much like his Grandfather and we couldn't be any more proud of having him join us. Since Rachel isn't in a position to totally care for him and neither is his father, I've taken on the responsibility of raising him, with his mother's help, as his legal guardian. Our youngest, Ross, has just completed his second semester of his second year of college. He's growing into such a kind and warm young man. I've sold our home in Colorado and am moving back to NYC where we can be surrounded by family. Bill loved Colorado much more than I do and I'd like for Nicholas to grow up among his many, many Aunts, Uncles, and Cousins as possible. I'm not able to come to this site often but I do sneak a peak now and then. I'm sorry to see so many new names here from my last look-in and I'm so sorry for this. But, you've found a place filled with so many in your same boat ready and willing to lend a hand and a shoulder to lean on or to cry on and always a word of advice and/or encouragement. Please know that all of you are in our hearts, especially at this time of hope and anticipation and celebration. I hope you all have something, anything, that brings you hope and encouragement. You all remain in my thoughts and prayers. Love... Jacqui
  2. bbira

    What I Hate About PD

    I hate PD because it took my husband away from me. I hate PD because of how it is slowly, but surely. torturing so many here and around our world. I hate PD because it never stops and it doesn't care who you are or how it's terrorizing those closest to us. I hate PD because it's changed my life from one of hope and serenity with a good man who loved life and loved coming to this place to connect and share to a man whose absence has left a hole in the lives of so many who knew him. I hate PD because my grandson will never experience life with the man who dreamed and planned so often to meet him someday and take him by the hand and show him the world. I hate PD because I know how much it's altered the world of so many of you here. I love you all, Jacqui
  3. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Happy Thanksgiving to ALL of you! Blessings, Jacqui
  4. Hello Everyone...JB, Eileen, Sue, Em, Marcia, Randy, Bob, Tonya...and all who come here to share. It's been quite a year for us. It's been a year and a half since we lost Bill and this time has been filled with many events for us. We're still dealing with our feelings over losing him. We've dealt with raging wildfires precariously close-by. We've dealt with our neighbors losing their homes in these fires and helping them through this horror. But, I'm overjoyed to tell you that we're close to welcoming a new one into our family. Our daughter, Rachel, is due to deliver a child, a baby boy, in just a few weeks! Granted, it's not the way I envisioned how we would have our first grandchild, Rachel isn't married and the father of this child is not even close to being in the picture nor is Rachel ready for the role of mother, but it has changed her outlook on life and matured her and has brought us closer to each other. We've decided that I will be the legal guardian of this precious one and that Rachel will live with us until she is on her feet. We will be open with the child as to the identity of his parents and, maybe someday, Rachel will be able to adequately take on the role of mother to him. Rachel decided to name him after her father...so, William Joseph Nicholas, he will be! Bill will be so proud and I can't help but believe he personally asked the Lord to give us such a beautiful Christmas gift. I apologize to all of you who have been so kind to send messages to me that I've failed to respond to you. Honestly, for the life of me, I can't figure out how to respond through this site! Please know that all of you meant so much to Bill and also to me. Please know that my thoughts and prayers are with all who deal daily with PD and all who care for those with this most frustrating and daunting of maladies. I haven't much time of late to catch up here and I'm sorry to see so many new names and faces. I'm sorry you have found the need to come to these forums but am happy to see you've found this wonderful group of friends who are here to help and share with you their efforts to live fruitfully with PD. This group was such a central part of Bill's life and he loved all of you so much. Your support and kindnesses to me and our children has been so important to me and has touched me to no end. I love you all and hope for all of you and wonderful Thanksgiving Day. I'm so thankful to have all of you in my life in some form or fashion and will try to visit more often. Diane, I'm lighting candles and saying prayers for you, my dear, as you continue to courageously continue sharing your story with all of us. JB...hand in there, my fine friend. Sue and Em, we miss seeing you here...hope all is well in England and Ireland! Marcia, I hope you are adjusting to life in "The Bend". I was there in October to meet up with some old friends for an Irish game. One more win and we're in the Championship game...unbelievable! Have you had a chance to visit the ND campus? Well, I must go and put the turkey in the oven and begin other preparations. Lots of folks coming to our house for dinner. God Bless all of you! Love, Jacqui
  5. bbira

    Colorado fires

    We finally made it home Sunday night so, now, only about 1000 people in the Springs are away from home and about half of those have no homes to return to. This has been a seemingly long and arduous last 9 days and we owe so many of you for jumping in and helping out and for your many, many, many kind thoughts and prayers and words of comfort and encouragement. We owe the many men ...and women...who continue to work on extinguishing these relentless fires every single day with such courage and conviction. I just can't say enough about them but I do want to say THANK YOU to everyone who has made this their calling or vocation be it on a full time or voluntary basis. Your bravery helps us sleep a bit better each night knowing that all of you are standing watch ready to fight fires that otherwise would endanger us. My same thanks go out to all of those serving in law enforcement and the military. We've seen your presence and your call to duty here in the Springs protecting our property while we were forced away due to the fires. We have a lot of work to do around here clearing brush and other vegetation that did burn as well as having our deck rebuilt. We also will have to have the exterior of our home repainted or re-stuccoed and some interior O2 treatments to help eliminate the strong smell of a campfire…a VERY nauseating sensation. But, we’re alive with a roof over our head and with most all of our belongings so, I thank God for seeing us through. The fires on the mountain continue to burn with two helicopter air drops of water cancelled yesterday due to tourists crossing the lines into the fire zone to take pictures. The smoke from those “hot spot” fires continues to enter into our neighborhood, forcing us to keep our windows closed with no air conditioning and high temperatures still in the mid 90’s. We are praying for rain but not too much due to flash flooding possibilities due to no vegetation on the mountains because of the fires. The heat up there was so intense that the sand in the soil melted into a sort of glass and “welded” the sand and other soils together making it almost pavement-like so any substantial rain will roll off of the mountains creating flash flooding possibilities. Again, thank you all for your care, concern, and help these past few trying days. You are all in my daily thoughts and prayers. Wish I could join all of you on the SS Parky cruise...one of Bill's favorites...but think I would have to pass on sitting around the campfire! Anne...it's so good seeing you back on this forum. I know that you've been missed. Bill admired you so much. JB...thanks for your kind thoughts as always. Diane...lots of extra prayers for you...Marcia...hope you cool off soon. Love you all... Jacqui
  6. bbira

    Colorado fires

    Diane...the south side of town has had no fire. The fire in the Springs has been west of I25 and north of Garden of the Gods and the area between the Springs west into Teller county. We know of homes destroyed in our neighborhood but we don't know if our home has been damaged. We do know that the neighborhood to our south lost close to 400 homes and suffered a death and some people missing. This is such a nightmare for many here. Please keep all of us in Colorado in your prayers and please keep our fire fighters in your prayers. If you know or see a fire fighter, please thank them or give them a hug for doing all they do for us! Jacqui
  7. bbira

    Colorado fires

    Dear Eileen, Thank you for thinking of us...we had to evacuate our home on Tuesday, the 26th, and are staying with friends north of the Springs. We don't know if our home and neighborhood are still intact and won't know until we are allowed back in sometime next week. The mountain above us is still on fire and the neighborhood next to us was 75% decimated. We only had about 30 minutes to gather valuables and important papers, photos, etc. Thank you so much for your kind thoughts and prayers. Jacqui
  8. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Hello Friends, It's been awhile since I last posted here. Please know that all of you are in my thoughts and prayers. Marcia, I see you've made it to South Bend. I know how hot it can get there in Summer. Has anyone yet informed you of how cold it can get in Winter? We spent many, many weekends in the Bend attending Bill's class reunions, Irish football and basketball games as well as many other events under the Golden Dome. I was going through Bill's papers and came across this one. I know that he posted this here but it's been quite some time and I'm hoping it may be of help to those who have joined the forum within the last year or so. I love you all, Jacqui Good Morning Friends...it's a bit early here in Colorado and I just returned home after a good walk to my parish church for morning Mass. It's a great routine for me and, with the church 1.5 miles from my home over a winding and hilly road, it's good exercise and a good way to start the day. I've been reading all of your posts and, I'm so touched with how you all so quickly and kindly reach out to each other with such care. Because of PD, I'm learning more each day about perspective. This morning at Mass, I sat across from one of the beautiful Franciscan sisters who live and work at the retreat center/retirement center/counseling center that they so lovingly operate at their center next to our parish atop Mt. St. Francis. She looks to be about 80 yrs. young and has some serious physical limitations. However, in watching her, she has such joy written all over her. Her hands are twisted and visibly shake no matter what she is doing. Her gait is slowed but determined and I just had to ask her after Mass how she does it...I see her here everyday and she always has the same smile on her face. She told me that life, to her, is all about perspective. She loves what she has done, and continues to do, with her life. She loves waking each morning knowing that she has been gifted with another day and that her physical "limitations" only help her to realize that she is still alive and only serve as a reminder of how thrilling a challenge life can be. We both agreed how blessed we are to live in the place we live. To wake each day and see the beauty of God's creation...from the beautiful snow-capped mountains to the beauty of His creatures we see in such abundance in our neck of the woods. We all have our burdens to bear, she said...I'm blessed to bear mine in such a paradise! Walking home I began to realize that, if we have people who love us or listen to us with a kind ear, who will console us when we need, encourage us when we struggle, and hold us when we just don't think we can keep our wits, then we, too, can bear our burdens in our own paradise. Take care...Bill
  9. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Hello Diane, My thoughts and prayers are with you as you prepare for your visit with your doctor. I'm a breast cancer "defeater", I don't really like to think of myself as having just "survived", and, while I hope your prognosis is good, if the news isn't the best, please know that you, too, can be a "defeater" and live a long and lovely life. Please, don't hesitate to reach out to talk when you feel the need. Much love and peace, Jacqui
  10. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Hello Jenette and all of my friends here. It's nice that you have this option to take some time to care for yourself and, yes, it's terrible that you weren't able to sleep in this morning! I so hope this time will allow for you to do those things that will help you to fight the monster in your life. I'm sure you will miss the work but I pray that you will also enjoy this time and do many, if not all, of the things you want to do in this life and that you can do so with all of your family and friends. I've not had much time of late to even come here to say hello to everyone I know or to learn of those of you here who may be new. I saw your posting just a few days ago where you were having such troubles and my heart was breaking just reading, and feeling, the anguish that had you in its grip. But, of course, your lovely friends and compatriots here, as always, came to your rescue. Doesn't it feel so wonderful to feel that love and warmth? I know, I've experienced, too, and I'll never ever forget that feeling. Tonya, if you're reading this, please forgive me for my tardiness in answering your wonderful email to me...I promise to write very soon. JB, you, the ROCK of this place, your private words to me are cherished. I'm so glad to learn of your experience with yoga and I'm so happy that you've shared that here. Not many men would admit to it...I mentioned it to Bill a few times but he acted as if he never heard me! Good for you! Marcia, I'm sorry that you're not getting good information from your doctors...keep pushing until you have answers. It's great to see that your sense of humor is still as sharp as ever. Eileen, hope you are healing nicely and I can't believe the news of the auto accident! YIKES...that would have scared the hell out of me! Randy, hope all is well in lovely Louisiana. Hope you aren't working too hard and taking time to play with those beautiful grandkids! Em and Carol..hope you are both warm and feeling good over in Ireland and Sue, hope you are well and preparing yourself to run in the marathon at the London Olympic games. Anne, dear Anne, where are you? These past couple of months have flown past me and I'm now scrambling to catch up. Bill's brothers, sisters, nieces, and nephews, and, now, some of their children were here for Christmas. It was a grand gesture, on their part, to visit me and our kids for the holidays but trying to find a spot for 56 people in our home all at once was quite the adventure! But, we found a way...no, they did not all sleep in our home, but many did. We had fun, talked about the year 2011 and all that came with it...good and bad...happy and sad. Funny thing about the Irish...we're very good at celebrating to forget the bad while celebrating the confusion of the good since the good is such a stranger. We have to welcome the good while learning that the bad only helps us to recognize the good. It's all in how one measures, eh? Wow, such a confusing string of words I just strung together. It's a lovely day here...the sky is clear with a bit of a wind that brings a nip to you. I hope it's not too cold wherever you may be. Kim, it seems you are getting the worst of it at the moment. Tomorrow begins the Lenten season. My goal is to trust that God will continue to give me strength and peace of mind and heart and peace and strength to all of you and to those who love and care so much for all of you. I'm so happy to still see Bill mentioned and remembered here. He so loved all of you and cherished his time here. You are still remembered by me and my kids each day in our thoughts and prayers. Much love and peace, Jacqui
  11. bbira


    Good Morning All, It's a lovely day in most of Colorado...my friends in the southwestern corner of our state may disagree what with all of the snow they are receiving...with sunny skies and temps in the low 40's for today. I admit that I've been worried about dealing with the holidays this year. Bill loved everything about Christmas. He loved, of course, the religious context, but he also loved the spectacle of it all. The men on our little cul-de-sac had an agreement each year to put out as many lights as we could all agree was "tasteful" and he loved having the house trimmed with as much Christmas "stuff" as possible. So, our neighbors all came over and pitched in...the men put out all of our lights and the women helped me with the interior decorations. I'm sorry to say that I sat and cried and cried watching them do all of this for us. I was invited to New York for Christmas by one of Bill's sisters but I couldn't imagine not being here. So, I received a call about 10 days ago informing me that his 9 brothers and sisters and their families have made the decision to come to Colorado for Christmas...all 50 something of them! One of Bill's brothers is a priest and our parish priest and Bishop have given their permission for him to con-celebrate the Christmas Mass that we will all attend! Em, please know that you and Sean and Roeland will be with us in spirit on that day. Your sweet message means so much to me. Thank you John and dear Tonya for also reaching out. Randy, so happy to read about another grandchild on the way for you...I hope this Advent Season will continue to bring blessings to you and yours. Eileen, thank you for thoughts and prayers. Marcia, Merry Christmas to you and for the joy and laughter you bring to all here. Sue, hope all is well in London...hope you are in good spririts and health. Thank you to all of you who remember Bill and who say such nice things about his presence here. Please know that you and your families will be in our prayers this Season. My prayers are for comfort for ALL of you and that a cure for this Monster will be found soon. I love you all, Jacqui
  12. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Thank you so much, Eileen. I appreciate and treasure your kind memories of Bill and for allowing me to come and post among all of you. I see and hear Bill whenever I read the many postings here and I know how much he loved, and continues to love, each and every one of you. There are so many I miss seeing here on a regular basis...Em, Sue, Tonya, Anne, and so many others but I'm happy to still see Marcia, Kim in Japan, Randy and so many more who come here, especially to this thread, to share a laugh, a tear, a word of comfort and encouragment, or to dream of Echo Beach and the peace and happiness that is there to give relief from wrestling with this monster even if only for a few minutes. Did wee Carol in Ireland return the boat? Tonya, Em, Sue, and Anne, I miss ALL of you so much. Your postings here brought such joy to Bill and he would often share your postings, along with your, Eileen and JB, and he treasured the love and shared in your pain, confusion, and hoped for peace of mind and heart for all of you. I hope for all good things for you and yours, Eileen, and for all of you, my friends, during this season of peace, of wonder, of hope and anticipation. Please, keep fighting and support, as you can, those who are searching for answers concerning PD and that a cure and, I pray, a prevention for PD. Much love and peace, Jacqui
  13. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Good Morning John, I'm so happy to "see" you here this morning. Sorry about the frigid weather there. We are experiencing some amazingly warm days and nights here in the foothills of the Rockies. We're 20-25 degrees above normal during the day. We need moisture but I can appreciate the snow holding off for awhile. Tomorrow is Thanksgiving Day in America and I wanted to let you all know how thankful I am for all of you and your kind thoughts and prayers for Bill and for me and our children. John, Bill was so found of you and really treasured your thoughts, insights, and sense of humor. I recall so many nights when I would find him here talking with you, Marcia, Em, Sue, Eileen, and so many others. He would talk about the fun at Echo Beach until it seemed that the place was real and I know that it is real to so many of you. Please, John, take care of yourself and listen to MJF, the second smartest Canadian I know with PD, and control this monster so that it doesn't control you. I was walking our dog, Macy, this morning and my head was flooded with thoughts of all of you. I hope you all are with family and/or friends to celebrate all we have to be thankful for. We walked up the hill to Mt. St. Francis to say "Good Morning" to Bill and all of the deer who love living there and I smiled because I know how special all of you are. I'm so happy that so many are strong enough to come to this site and ask for help and I'm very happy that so many of you are so willing to be at this site to help, share, console, laugh, and cry together. God Bless all of you and keep you safe and warm always. Happy Thanksgiving! Much love and peace, Jacqui
  14. bbira

    Good morning!!

    Hello to all of my friends here. I hope all of you are well and planning for a great week next week with family and friends. I'm so thankful to know that I can come here from time to time without feeling intrusive, since I'm not a PWP, and you all make me feel so welcomed. Thanksgiving was a special day for Bill. He often, depending on weather, would get up earlier than usual, hike a bit further than usual, make the loop near our home, and we, me and the kids, would take the rest of the way up the hill to Mt. St. Francis for Mass and prayers for all that we have to be thankful for...of course, ALL of you were included in those prayers. The kids have all committed to coming home next week and we've pledged to continue this tradition. Please know that our prayers are with all of you and all who love and care for you. I know that Bill is continuing his thoughts and prayers for all of you as well. After Mass, we would go to a soup kitchen downtown next to our Cathedral and help serve a Thanksgiving meal for those who otherwise would go without. We were a small addition to the many, many people who help in this way every day of the year. We are humbled to give even just a few hours to help out. We're expecting a very warm Thanksgiving Day this year with temps in the low 50's so our hike should be very pleasant but also difficult celebrating this year without Bill actually being with us. We received so many invitations to join family and friends but decided that this year we just want to be together and to remember Bill and all of you who mean so much to him and now to all of us. Cheers and Happy Thanksgiving to so many of you who keep in touch and who allow me to come here to keep up on your triumphs and not so good days dealing with this monster. I love you all, Jacqui Erin Rachel Alex
  15. em45

    Dear Jacqui, my thoughts are with you so often, I too miss Bill so very much..to say it gets easier means nothing in a sense, but to have nice memories means so much more..take care my friend..warm wishes and love to you and your family..em x