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More questions

October 18, 2011

As time continues to move on, I find myself becoming more and more wrapped up by how my dad’s last days were.  I last saw my dad alive on Sunday, August 28th.  Later that night, I got on an airplane and headed home, with the knowledge that I would never see him alive again.  Before I left, my mother and I agreed that we should start trying to make him comfortable versus trying to treat his condition.  This was due to the horrible effects of the alcohol finally catching up with him.  To make him comfortable, we decided to move him to a hospice center, as he could not go home in his condition.  On Monday, August 29th, he was moved by ambulance to the hospice center.  Two days later, he would take his last breath.

It is these last few days that have piqued my curiosity.  I know I will never know the answers, but it will not stop me from asking.  When I left, the doctors had informed us that there was a high concentration of ammonia on the brain and everything they tried had not worked.  The longer the ammonia stayed on his brain, the more permanent damage was done.  Knowing it would be the last time I would get to talk to him, before I left I took a few minutes with my dad to say goodbye and to thank him for everything he had done for me.  Even though the alcohol was always present, he was good man with a big heart.  I leaned forward to give him a kiss on the forehead and he grabbed my wrist and asked if everything was okay.  I told him everything was good but my wife and I were getting ready to leave and wanted to say goodbye.  As we walked out of the room, I told him that I loved him and replied “Love you too.”

The questions I have start at this point.  Did he maybe know the end was soon or was he already so far gone that he didn’t know?  The following day, he was moved to the hospice center.  Did he know where he was going?  My mom told me the he kidding around with the ambulance drivers and seemed in a good mood.  When he arrived at the center, they bathed him and put him in a clean gown.  The removed all of the IV’s and gave him something to make him comfortable.  He slept all day Tuesday and on Wednesday he started to struggle to breathe.  My mom was in the room with him and she said he opened his eyes, mumbled “I love you” and took his last breath.  Did he know it was his last breath?  While he was lying there, did he know what was happening?  Did he have time to regret what he had done to himself and us?  Did he…….

I don’t know any of the answers and I hate asking these questions because I know I will never get them answered.  But as I continue to move forward and work to deal with has happened, I have determined I will not keep things pent up inside.  I will talk to my wife, I will pray and I will continue to write.  I know a lot of people do not read this, but by putting this into words, I am helping myself move forward.  And through it all, I miss my dad.

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From → Alcoholism

One Comment
  1. With tears in my eyes, I wish there was something I could say. I care. I really do. I’m praying for you. God knows what you need. It’s good to ask the questions. I wish I had some answers. Thank you for telling your story. I believe it’s important.

    I see the AlAnon website in the sidebar. Are you going?

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