The End That Came Far Too Soon
When I started this post I was planning to update everyone on my father’s current condition – pneumonia in one lung with the hope that antibiotics would help fight the infection but sadly, that is not how it happened.
On the morning of May 9th I received a call that would forever change my life – we lost my father.
Let me rewind and explain a bit more – since about mid April we had a meeting with the oncologist scheduled. May 8th was the date, and it was spoken about frequently and often.
As my father progressed, his memory was not quite as sharp as it was a mere 3 months earlier. At first I did not see the memory issues – his short-term memory was the worst, and we thought that it was medication related. When I figured the true reason out, it was when he was off all medications for a week after his stroke and still had memory impairment.
The days leading up to the 8th were normal, which were filled with nurses, therapists and doctors. I had considered bring on hospice, but I wanted my father to attend the meeting on the 8th which was so important to him, so I waited.
The morning of the 8th was normal, Jason was home so that he could attend this important meeting with my father and I. I went over in the morning to visit, and my father was sleeping, so peaceful, and out of pain and filled with a sense of calm. As I later realized, I would feel this same feeling again in a mere 24 hours in a much different way.
I grabbed some lunch and came back to eat with Jason, and prepared to meet my father at the doctors. Truth be told, I do not remember that drive to the medical plaza, all I thought about was the appointment and how my father was. We arrived before my dad, which gave us a moment to collect our thoughts and breathe a bit.
As the van drove up, I ran outside so that my father knew I was there, and then helped unload him. We wheeled in the waiting room, and the complaints of pain set it, almost immediately. We waited for a few minutes, and were ushered into the exam room. I stepped out to give the nurses some information that the doctor would need and returned to Jason and my Dad.
When the doctor arrived, the meeting was short and quick and comprised of a message of my dad needing to get stronger before treatment could begin. We went outside to wait for his ride back, and enjoyed the sun and breeze under the cover of shade. I would later learn that while I was out of the room my father told Jason that “something changed on the ride over”.
I escorted my father out, and onto the van, wishing him well and telling him we loved him and I would see him in the morning. He said he loved us too, and bid us fair well and a “see you in the morning”. Those would be the last words he ever said to us.
The next morning when my phone rang at 7:40am I knew – I knew that he was gone. He was living for the appointment on the 8th and to hear the plan of action. Once he heard that there was no treatment and the chances were not in our favor, he let himself go.
When I got the call, they informed me that he had taken his 6:00AM medications on his own, and when they returned for breakfast at 7:40 he was gone – he just went to sleep. Since Jason had left a short while earlier for work, I had to call him and break the news, which was as hard as hearing it the first time. I do not remember much from that morning until I went and saw my father.
I debated for a while if I wanted to see him and in the end, I am glad I did – it was nice to see him at peace, sleeping and out of pain. I spent a short amount of time with him, told him I loved him and told him there would never be a better parent. I bid him farewell, and I told him I would think of him all the time.
I have mentioned that my dad reiterated often – QUALITY OVER QUANTITY. For my father it meant being home with Meadow, being able to see friends and loved ones, and being able to spend time in his jewelry room creating and dreaming and anything less he was not interested in and in the end I am sure he controlled his own fate.
At the same time I lost my father, I was texting hospice and trying to arrange a time for them to take over his care. My father always said he did not want to end up in hospice and in the end, that is exactly what happened, he avoided hospice and died his way.
My father lived a grand life, he was generous, loving and the best father ever. My father impacted everyone’s life that he touched, including mine. From the day he was born to the day he died he lived a life of intention and made every one of his dreams come true – he died with no regrets and a bucket list lived and he will be missed every day!
For now we are in his house with our cats and Meadow, and planning the next steps – all the while with my dad in the forefront of our minds and heart.
Check back, I plan to share the memorial with you!
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