Although Dad was a heavy smoker for much of his life, I am told that the fibrosing alveolitis that killed him could not be directly related to this. In fact, nothing could be directly related and, indeed, it took some time to diagnose the problem.
The end came relatively rapidly. From the time of initial diagnosis, there were eighteen short months. The disease got worse, rendering it a chore for dad to even walk to the mailbox. The steroids helped very little and, in the end, ever-increasing doses of morphine meant he lost some of his lucidity.
It is a cruel disease, with no cure. The scarring gets worse, and the shortness of breath more desperate. Finally dad succumbed and was released from the ever-harder battle to simply breathe.
It's tough to write about, but cathartic as well. I miss him a lot and wish that I could have just a little more time to tell him how much I love him.
Lung diseases are dreadful, but I hope that the experts continue their research so that our loved ones can live easier and longer.
New email address needed 08-15-06 SLE
Old Email Prefix: KJennings
Story posted 1-9-02
Story edited VH1: JTD 8-21-03
Story Artist: Shelley Ensz
Story Editor V1: Judith Devlin
is also known as Pulmonary Fibrosis
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