Ramblings from the Cove...
November 2007 -- Update on Bunny Foss
By Lars Gren
In mid-August I called Bunny to see how she was feeing and if it was a good time for Elisabeth and me to come and have a visit. She had finished the latest course of Chemo and was having one of her good weeks. It delighted her that we would drive to Dexter Maine to see her in the area where spent her young years before going off as a missionary to the Congo.
Plans were for us to be there around noon for she had a great desire to take us to Moosehead Lake a favorite place and from the lakeshore to view the 1789 foot Mt Kineo. We ran a bit late arriving just before one. As we drove in Bunny was at the door of her trailer home that sits behind her sister and brother-in-law’s home just in back of a small lake where she has a view of the farm across the road as well as enjoying the bird life at the water’s edge. To say that she exhibited joy at our coming would be a vast understatement. We were ushered in and given the tour of her home which had also been her parents home and we were shown how they had altered the trailer. Then we saw her beloved books and other mementoes form her travels and she told us of certain ones who would receive these either before or after her death as she has begun the shedding process. She was most concerned for our comfort having us sit for a cup of tea and some snack and wondering if we were up to another hour and a half ride. Of course we were and soon with the picnic basket in the car off we went.
It was a lovely drive and along the way Bunny spoke of the blessing of this part of her life—how good and kind her friends were—the wonderful doctors she had—of how the Lord has supplied all for her—how grateful she is in leading a Bible study—and for her pastor who asked her to prepare a young couple for missionary service. Part of the preparation for them is going through Elisabeth’s book Discipline the Glad Surrender. You might guess that Elisabeth is high on her list of authors to be read. Then we were at the lake where she reveled in telling us her trip once to around the base of Mount Kinea.
When we returned her sister and brother-in-law came for tea and of course Bunny fussed to see that the four us were well supplied as they spoke of earlier days. To top the day Bunny had reservation at her favorite restaurant and said that she hoped her table was available, a quiet one in the corner which was indeed waiting for us. There was more said by her of what it meant for Elisabeth to see the area where her final days will be spent. It was full heartwarming day.
There was another good half day to be together before our return to Magnolia. After meeting her pastor and his wife we tooled around Dexter going into the small church where she leads the Bible study, then by the old homestead owned by someone from the Boston area and looking as though upkeep was not high on the list of priorities. We now know the path she walked to the one room school house where she started school and later thought there. A few more sights to see and a story with each and the we found ourselves at her Sunday restaurant set back from a lake where Bunny goes regularly on Sundays after church for lunch and if the weather is right eats ice cream outside on a bench enjoying the ducks and other creatures as well as the tranquility of the scene. Then the visit was over with more praise for coming and for the blessing we brought but it was we who were blessed as we saw her standing and waving by the door. While we were there she said that the following week she was to have a new type Chemo.
Bunny did have the treatment and the following week went for a check to see what the results were. A few days after that I called to ask how she was. Her cheerfulness and joy belied the fact of the news, “The numbers did not go down but have risen. My doctor explained that the body gets immune to the effect of the drug and another one might be tried.” “My body is wearing down. So I said ‘why should we go on and go through all the weakness and pain let’s just stop the treatments.’ Now I am home and people are so wonderful. One lady called this morning and asked if she could help at all. So I told her that I am too weak to wash the kitchen floor and she is coming to do the floor in the morning. Every one is so kind. I am just so thankful and blessed by all. I am asking the Lord that I can continue until I get the young couple ready for the field.”
That was my latest contact with Bunny. We hope that the Lord will give her the pleasure of seeing that couple ready to go. He answered her prayer of finishing and seeing her biography in print although her hopes that a publisher would pick it up did not turn out. However there were many of the doctors and medical staff that bought the book and will learn more of what gave Bunny joy.
We can only think that Bunny has spent her life being thankful and being of service to others making her truly, “A well watered garden.” Isaiah 58:10-11.
Some of you have read the previous bit about Bunny and perhaps we can pray the she will have an easy transition from life to Life. And that’s it from the Cove.
Ps. 27 October, I called to get the latest and received the usual answer to my,” How are you?” “Oh I am just so blessed and Bunny was off thanking me for a few booklets and Elisabeth’s tapes that I had sent and now the missionary couple were listening to the tape.” We chatted a bit more and then Bunny said, “Well to tell how it is—I had developed a cough and saw my doctor. She said that one lung was filled with fluid and she tapped it and got a quart of vile looking fluid out and of course I feel so much better. But you know that is the way it started when cancer first came in ’95. She did advice me to get in touch with hospice, not that I need that yet, but just to have a contact with them. A representative has been by and we had a good meeting. So that’s were it stand’s now.” Then we chatted a bit more and she laid on me an unworkable assignment and that was to say that she hoped that I had kept a diary—which I have not—and that I was to be the one our days together and to tell of the latter portion of Elisabeth’s life. “Bunny, don’t lay that on me.” We said our farewell with blessings back and forth.
God bless y'all,
L and E