|*my father is on the right|
My blogging budette Katherine, over at Shoot Me Now, shared a post on Tuesday, listing some of the things she thought she would/could never do.
And one of the things she listed hit home for me because it was something I too thought I would/could never do, but did.
After I finished leaving my comment, I began reflecting back to the similar experience Katherine and I both shared, and realized it wasn’t a matter of ‘would I or could I do it’, it was more about knowing that I had to do it – and wanted to do it – even though I was unsure of what I was going to say.
So thank you Katherine for sharing your post because it gave me the recollection and inspiration for this one.
The last thing on Katherine's list was this…
“Hold my dying father’s hand and tell him, “It’s OK to go.” Something I never thought I could do, but had to… and did.”
And it was the same for me.
By the time my father had been admitted to a Hospice facility, it was only a matter of nine days before he passed away. And I have to say that those nine days were some of the most beautiful moments I had with my father because he and I got to have closure on certain things. We also bonded in a way we never had before. We touched and kissed, and told each other, “I love you.”
While my father was in Hospice, my mother and I took turns staying in the room with him. I took the morning till evening shift, while my mother took the evening till morning shift.
On the day my father passed, I could sense that morning he was hanging on because he didn’t want to leave his family.
My father was unconscious the last few days of his life, so he couldn’t speak. But I knew he could hear - and perhaps not with his ears, but with his soul.
So I sat there for about an hour that morning, contemplating what I was going to say because I knew he needed to hear, “It’s OK, you can go.”
It’s a strange thing saying that because you have so many emotions going through you – you’re frightened, sad, and at a loss for words. You don’t want the person to go, yet you know you have to allow them.
And perhaps some people hang on, not so much because they don’t want to leave, but more so because they want to make sure that the people they love will be OK when they do leave.
Finally, I just did it. I walked over to the side of his bed, gently stroked his forehead, and said the first thing that came to my heart.
I said, “It’s OK Dad, you can go. And know that you were a wonderful father. You gave me everything I needed as your son. And I’m proud that you were my father. I love ya, Dad. Just let yourself go and don’t hang on for us please, because we’ll be OK. We love ya, Dad. Be at peace.”
And I knew he heard me because for about a half a minute he kept trying to speak, but couldn't.
I kissed him on the forehead and told him that I loved him one more time.
Later that evening when my mother came to Hospice, she and I stepped out to get a quick bite to eat before I went home. We must have been gone about 25 minutes, when we walked into Hospice and saw a nurse approaching us. And I knew, even before she opened her mouth to say it, “I’m so sorry, but your husband and father just passed away.”
And as my mother and I entered his room, there he was – at peace.
I clearly remember walking over to one of the windows in his room and looking up at the sky. It was the time of day that my father loved the most…dusk.
So I thought it utter perfection that he left this earth...at his favorite time.
Have a beautiful weekend everyone!