The First Hundred

...in the light of eternity. "Life's a tough proposition, and the first hundred years are the hardest." Wilson Mizner

Tuesday, January 08, 2008

I want to go with them...

The old man was tired. He sat in a chair next to his hospital bed, his daughter across from him, the supper tray between them. She'd been there most of the day. "I like to be here for meal times, to make sure he eats something. If you don't watch him, he goes straight for the dessert." The patient winked at me, and twitched a faint grin.
He was getting weaker, and it took three of us to get him back to bed and settled in for the evening. He wanted something for pain. I got him the pills and hung his IV antibiotic. He'd been here for over a week, and just wasn't making progress.
It was bedtime. I asked about his pain, and he said he was fine, "I'm really doing alright now." I headed down the hall to check on my other patients.
The CNA tidied him up, propped him up with an extra pillow to ease his breathing and asked if he needed anything. "I want to go over there, with them", he replied, pointing toward the wall. She gently told him there wasn't anybody there, and it was time to go to sleep anyway. He looked at the wall again, and nodded at her.
The phone rang at the desk. It was a call from the CCU monitors, "Go and check on #23. He's tracing asystole (flatline)."
There were no respirations. I put my stethoscope on his silent chest and listened; then marked the time by the clock on the wall. He was a DNR. I turned off his IV and oxygen. He had gone with them.

9 Comments:

  • At 1/08/2008 10:55 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    What a beautifully-written story, Karen!! I am in awe.
    Mom

     
  • At 1/08/2008 4:04 PM, Blogger Uncle Joe said…

    I think there is meaning in going straight for the dessert.

     
  • At 1/08/2008 5:59 PM, Blogger Paul said…

    Well written. My mother experienced the same thing: "Them." In fact, I experienced it with her. I sensed all the angels around us that morning and said, "Mom, there are angels in this room." She sorta smiled...

    Thanks for this reminder. God bless.

     
  • At 1/08/2008 8:09 PM, Blogger LZ Blogger said…

    A sad reminder that we all will go HOME someday! ~ jb///

     
  • At 1/09/2008 5:45 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said…

    A tender vignette... and a reminder that we take that last trip alone...
    I wonder who welcomed him to the other side.
    MM

     
  • At 1/09/2008 8:29 AM, Blogger Jim said…

    My Mom always said the firemen eat their desserts first in case there is a fire. He knew, didn't he? I am so glad you could be there with him at that time.
    Of course that isn't the end of the story, just the end of that chapter. I sure hope the next chapter is happy for him forever.
    ..

     
  • At 1/09/2008 8:06 PM, Blogger Aunt Jo said…

    What a beautiful story.

    Death can be a beautiful especially stories like that. I think God give us special vision at the doorway so we won't be afraid to go.

     
  • At 1/10/2008 9:52 PM, Blogger simplicity said…

    This is beautifully written. I saw some of this when my mother passed away just a month ago. She mentioned many times over that she wanted to go home, she wanted to go home, and by the end I do believe she meant her heavenly home.

    (If you click on my blog and on the side where it says My Mumsy, you can read some of her "story" and battle with cancer.)

     
  • At 1/13/2008 9:24 PM, Blogger Jamie Dawn said…

    I look forward to seeing them someday.
    Wow.

     

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