October 14th 2020, 1am, I have three missed calls from my mom. Obviously something is up… I call her back as quickly as possible. She doesn’t answer. She sends me a text message saying, I think your father had a stroke, the ambulance just took him and rushed him to the hospital. I froze! A small portion of me was optimistic. A similar situation happen a year ago where we all got scared but luckily it was a false alarm.
My mother wasn’t allowed to go in the ambulance truck with him due to Covid. So we were left with no news until the morning of.
8am, my brother, mother and I went to the hospital, due to Covid restrictions only one of us were allowed to go in to see him at a given time. After one hour of my mom being in the room with him, she walks out crying and says “he doesn’t recognize me”. It’s like the whole world came crushing down on me. I freaked out. Turned white in the face, punched the wall and started crying, only thing that was repeating in my brain was me saying to myself, “I’ll never have another conversation with my pops”. I then proceeded to go see him for myself. He was laying on his hospital bed and was just looking around. He looked confused and lost and he had no idea who anyone was, after 3 minutes of being in the room with him, I stormed out. I just couldn’t handle it. My worst nightmare was happening in front of my very own eyes. I wasn’t ready for this. I needed more time with him, I still had memories to create with him.
After several tests and handful of expert opinions. The doctors broke the news, that my dad would be leaving us in the physical form within the next few weeks. He couldn’t speak, couldn’t hear, he couldn’t move any part of his body with the exception of his left arm. He refused every single time that a nurse or doctor would try and give him water.
My dad was a strong man, his mother died 15 years ago, the difference is, when she had a stroke, she was paralyzed at 70% and lived her last 5 years on a hospital bed with a caretaker. My dad used to always tell us that if anything similar was to happen to him that he rather be dead than spend a day living like that. Well that’s the clean version, cause he’d say “shoot me in head if that ever happens to me”
Well here was his final test and he was living by his beliefs. Without a doubt my father wanted to die the second he realized how bad of a situation he was in. The only thing he was able to do was stare at us from one eye and cry.
Two weeks went by, and my father took his last breath. Oddly enough, he took his last breath surrounded by my mom, brother, sister and myself. I kid you not, he stopped breathing one minute after my brother and I walked into the room. It was October 31st 2020, the day of the blue moon. I’ll never forget that moon nor that day.
It’s now January 16th, I’ve been through every emotion you can imagine. My first birthday without dad, first Christmas, first New Years Eve, first “year” without the man I respected and loved the most.
I always knew how important he was to me. But losing him and removing him from the equation, I now look at life completely differently, I look at life through a lens that I didn’t even know existed.
I’m 29, father of 3, small business owner. I’m scared, confused, worried, depressed and to add a cherry on top, I’m absolutely fed up of the impact covid has had on my personal and professional life. I can’t wait for things to go back to normal, even if a part of me knows that’s impossible since my father will never be here again.
I will use blogging as a way to express myself and share my thoughts and story with all of you. If you’re reading this, please go out of your way to contacting your parents and let them know how much they mean to you.
Many times I feel like I’m alone having deep thoughts, which is why I want to start writing as somewhat a sanity check.