Saturday, March 31, 2012

493.

This post has no title because I don't know what to call it.

It's a difficult one to write but I'll do it because I need to.

I'm sitting here wrapped in a blanket, in hospice, at my husband's bedside.

He is dying slowly but faster than most of us.

And I'm watching him because I love him and if possible, I want to be here with him when he takes his last breath.

Our children and my sister are here in this room with us. I am definitely awake. I don't know that the others are really sleeping. Probably the children because they are tired. It's been a long ordeal for them, though the calendar would say otherwise.

My husband has been here for less than a week. Before this, he spent 10 days in hospital.

He was in the poorest health when he arrived here and his condition continues to decline.

It's all surreal right now.

I know I'm here with my husband, my children, my sister. But I can also step outside of my mind somehow and think about things non-related, as if this is not my reality. I can also look at my husband, as ill as he now is, and think that he just needs a long rest to get him back to being up and about again.

Except the no-nonsense me keeps kicking in. She keeps telling me what's real and what's not. She keeps interjecting at moments I don't want to hear from her, with words like "cremation" and "memorial service".

Yes, I know these are the things we civilized people do for our dead. I have also accepted that I will have to do these things for my husband very soon. However, the closer we get, the more I wish someone else could take the reigns on this buggy.

I am exhausted. Running on fumes. Existing on the wings of supportive family and friends as well as their prayers.

My husband is exhausted too. Lymphoma that has metastasized is eating his body from top to bottom. He has already told us he's tired and ready to go home. We all know which home he means.

It's okay with me because it has to be. If he's ready to meet God face to face, I love him enough to support his journey in any way I can.

We're all expressing varying degrees of sadness but there is laughter as well, which I know is what my husband wants. He likes to laugh.

The nurse said it appears we're hearing the last strains of his song now, as we see his physical body  undergoing signs of finality.

He is being kept comfortable with morphine for pain and small doses of other medications if needed.

He hasn't eaten or drunk anything for at least a day. It seems he may have forgotten how to swallow.

His eyes are open half way; he hasn't closed them for over 12 hours. He appears to be able to blink one eye, he's possibly even crying from it. I'm concerned that he has dry eye and I want to let a few drops of my saline drip into his eyes, something he rarely let me do even on days when he returned from work knowing his eyes were dirty.

The waiting truly is the hardest part...

Not because we're waiting for the inevitable.

Maybe it's because we know the outcome is inevitable.

I'm also waiting for the full impact of the situation to hit me. I'm sure it will, when I have time to let it. Right now, I'm otherwise engaged.

I will miss my husband probably more than I can imagine. But even in the depths of whatever sadness I feel and will feel, I must be grateful for sharing this life experience with Mr. Bliss.

For all involved, there are powerful lessons to be learned from this segment of the journey. I hope we are able to embrace them, and perhaps use them to help others some day.

Namaste.


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