Friday, February 17, 2012

Aunt Y takes flight (m)

Woke up this morning with a pit in my stomach.  I had hoped the situation with my aunt was a dream but I knew it wasn't.  Brought the car in to be serviced, got a manicure for the Ball tomorrow night and then headed to the hospital. I was dreading it. Aunt X and Cousin Patty were there.  Phillip was leaving as I was entering.  He said the hospice nurse thinks she has another 24-48 hours.

Went into her room and saw Patty and Aunt X, sitting there quietly.  Aunt Y looked dramatically worse than the day before which is when I last saw her.

I sat down and rubbed her hands and feet and talked to her.  Nothing.  Her breathing was labored as the hospice nurse explained it would be.  Pretty hard to take. 

I took her pulse.  58.  Not bad.  Her feet were still warm.  She could easily last another 2 days at this rate.

I looked out the window and commented that it was a beautiful day.  Sunny, Spring-like, no wind.  "Great day to fly," I said to Aunt Y. 

I turned to look at Patty who was discussing what food we should order for after the service.  I turned back to Aunt Y and thought she looked different.  I waited for an intake of breath, but it never came.

We called the nurse in and she listened for a heartbeat that wasn't there.  She nodded to us, confirming what we already knew.

I've seen lives enter this world and I've seen lives leave this world.  Each entrance and exit has its own magic and mystery.  I never cease to be awestruck by the miracle of life in either direction.

It occurred to me that we never told Aunt X that her nephew Jimmy died last week.  I hope she's not upset with us when she finds out in the next world.

After a while, we left Aunt X's hospital room and went to see Cousin Mary who is in tough shape.  She was given last rites the same day as Aunt X.  She, too, will be gone soon.

We walked out of Mary's room, depressed as hell.

Patty turns to me and says, "We're probably going to have two wakes at the same time.  We're going to have to order alot of food."

I turned away and went to my car.

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