Today, the fourth of may, is always a special day to Frank. The remembrance of all the fallen soldiers during WW II, is met by him with great respect. Tonight he payed his tribute horizontally. When I came in he was reading the paper and was quite awake. Now for the rest of holland the fourth of may is remembrance, but in our family it's the birthday of Frank's youngest sister Anne and of my eldest son Sjoerd. So I helped Frank to make a phonecall to both of them. Anne visited Frank yesterday and came across the speechtherapist and Anne told her that Frank wanted herring. So she said, "well go and pick one" as they did. When Anne asked Frank on the phone whether he had eaten the herring, he confirmed it and he indicated that it tasted very well (visualizing mashed herring turns my stomach upside down, but as long as it helps Frank, mashing it is!!). So to my idea this opens new perspectives, just give him anything he likes as long as it is mashed. I certainly will communicate this to the staff. Andre is probably preparing, (right now I think) mashed belgian chocolates. I helped Frank eat applejuice and to my idea, the time he needs to swallow seems to lessen, he finished it rather quick!
Coincidentally Marieke called upon me and I handed over the phone to Frank. So within 15 minutes he talked to a few members of the family and he liked that, so I'm going to arrange a phone ASAP.
Frank told Andre and me that the physical therapist was very content with his progress (but we were a little reluctant to believe that since Frank was so down the last days). Well...on our question what he had to do he gave us a life show by which we were both stunned. Making crunches (raising his body lying on his bed, aprox. 15-20 cm), the therapist told Frank that if he progresses the way he does, he will leave Kalorama with a sixpack!! And right after that he took his left hand in his right one and lifted his paralyzed arm ten times. Which was also very impressive. So to Andre and me this was a glimpse of regaining his spirits again.
We also could tell Frank that the amount needed to buy an Ipad is almost there, and we really hope that it will give frank an extra impulse to fight for his recovery. Anything that can help to motivate him to hold on and fight contributes.
It is so impressive to see all the contributions made, we'll make sure Frank will know the names of all the contributers. Here I will not mention all the names but to each and everyone of you who contributed, thanks from the bottom of my heart.
Ps: for those of you who also want to make a donation, look in the april archive blog entry "market garde bicyle tour", all the needed information is there
Thousend times thanks!
To all the followers of the blog, to anyone who has been supportive of Frank or us in the last months and especially after his untimely death we want to say thanks from the bottom of our hearts. In the week after his passing we received so much warmth, stories, care and love, hardly describable. To us it was a very precious and valuable week and it was so good to have Frank at home where so many of his friends could visit him. And all the help, stories and info shared in that week led to a beautiful goodbye ceremony on a beautiful sunny autumn day. For those of you who could not attend, or those of you who wish to reread the funeral speeches, we publice them here (in dutch and english) with some pictures in grateful memory of, and tributed to Frank.We will miss him dearly, thanks for being with him and with us, one way or another,
On behalf of my family and his closest friends, Esther