Sunday, September 9, 2012

If we ever meet again..

I'm not a catholic. I don't go to church, I don't believe in any God. I believe in goodness. I believe that our soul stays alive in the hearts of the people who love us, once our body has turned into dust. As long as people talk about you and continue to love you, you will not be dead..

When the nursing home called me, that you were at the end of your rope, I didn't hesitate to drive 100 km to come see you. It had not been that long since I last visited both of you, but I was not prepared for what I saw when I entered your room. The way you were sunken in your chair, strapped in, with pants too wide for your skinny body, made me run off to the hallway and close the door behind me. I burst into tears and felt so lost. Your GP and nurse were in the hallway at the time. They informed me on your condition. Things were looking grim.. There wasn't much time left. They told me to say my goodbyes and prepare myself for your passing. I couldn't believe it, although I had seen your emaciated body. I straightened my back, wiped my tears, took a deep breath and opened the door to your room. Your wife was sitting at the table, sad and lonely. You were asleep and every now and then, I heard you gasp for air. My heart broke to see you like that. I came to sit beside you, so I could stroke your cheek. I accidentally woke you up. The nurse had warned me that you wouldn't recognize me, but you did. I even saw a faint smile on your face. Your eyes looked hollow and your nose was no more than a bird's beak. I wanted to hold that skinny body and called for the nurse. She was indignant over my question to put my grandpa in bed, so I could lay beside him and hug him. He was supposed to sit in his chair, to keep his body from getting bed sores. I was outraged by her answer, since these were his last moments.. He was not comfortable in that chair. I heard him moan and by the look on his face, he was in pain. There was no fat on his bones and he could not change his own position in that chair.

As soon as the nurse left the room, I opened the straps that kept you from falling out of that chair. Picking you up, my stomach twirled realizing how much weight you had lost. I laid you down on the bed and curled up beside you. With you in my arms, I hoped to make you feel safe and loved. You started to talk to me. Of course you knew who I was. You even started to make jokes. You had a hard time talking, since you couldn't catch your breath. When you whispered in my ear: "They keep telling me I'm going to get better, but I'm not a fool. I know my time has come.. Don't cry over it. I'm going in peace and I'll be happy to be reunited with my daughter.. We have been separated for too long." Tears rolled down my cheeks but it felt okay. I told him he didn't have to stay here any longer. He had the right to give up and get ready for his passing away. I couldn't do much more than hold him and give him all the love I had inside me. He fell asleep in my arms. I knew it was time to go, but I couldn't. I knew these were our last moments together. The last time I would be able to hug him and talk to him. When I whispered: "I love you.. it's okay, you may go now.. ", tears rolled down his cheeks too..

My heart got ripped out of my body when I left that room. He passed away the following day. I will never forget him. He was very dear to me..


Upje schrijft said...

Kippenvel ... . *big hug*

Susan Roelandt said... was my exact feelings the last time i saw my mom....i could have written this. I am so sorry for your loss...