In early spring of 2007 I decided to quit my job, sell my house along with nearly everything else that I owned, and to live out of my car while traveling the country. These are my stories (and pictures) of life on the road.

Sunday, March 9, 2008


The past couple weeks have been full of changes. Changes in weather, changes in plans, changes in location, and changes in priorities.

Over the past months I've mentioned a couple times that my grandfather's health (on my dad's side) has been failing. Not too long after I started my journey this past summer he was diagnosed with acute Leukemia and began getting blood transfusions. At first he could go about 1 1/2 months between transfusions but the interval between transfusions began getting shorter and shorter, just like the doctors said it would; right now it's only a little over a week.

Over the months he's been steadily losing weight and strength and a couple weeks ago a bout of pneumonia in conjunction with fluid in his lungs put him in the hospital for a week. It was touch and go for a couple days but he managed to make a good enough recovery to be sent home. During his hospital stay however we all realized that my grandparents would now need someone with them 24 hours a day.

No one wanted to put them in a home, least of all my grandparents, so last weekend I packed up some clothes and headed to their house where I'll be spending most of my time for the foreseeable future. I get a little free time every morning when a helper that they've had for the last couple years comes in and on the weekends my dad and aunt Laura can spend more time with them which allows me to come back to Estherville and have some time to myself; which is where I'm at right now. I came down with a little cold so it was good that I got out of there for the weekend. I'm feeling pretty good today though so either later today or tomorrow I'll head back for another week.

While this isn't exactly what I had in mind when I decided to pay off my debts, sell my house, and quit my job that's what allowed me to do this now and really, that was my main goal at the time; to do whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it, and right now this is what I want to do. It's far from a fun gig but I've gotta say that I'm really happy I can help out.


Anonymous said...

I am proud of you for stepping up to help like that, I know your dad is too.

Dennis Weatherman said...

Alan I have a very good understanding of your situation with family. My parents came out to visit in September 2005. The day after arrival my other had a massive heart attack. Needless to say she didn't see much of Colorado. We ended up with hospice in my house taking care of her. It was hard but I was glad my part of the family was able to help. My employer at the time was very understanding, and in the end I did not go back to work there. Mom passed on right after Thanksgiving that year and the whole fall was an experience I will not be able to forget.

Family first, bro, you can always do what you want later.

You've reached the end of the page but that's not the end of the stories. If you want to read more (and who wouldn't!?) then click on the archive links to the right hand side of the page. They're listed by month; the adventure starts in May.

The February archives aren't actually from this trip but are previous adventures I've had, which are worth reading as well.