I was awoken at 2:30 this morning, because Dad was in trouble. He was having trouble breathing.
It was a gurgling sound that he was making, and I have heard that sound before, just before my Mother-in-law passed last month.
We made a call to the respite folks. They suggested that we roll him on to his side, to hopefully drain the fluid building up in his throat. But it didn’t work.
A second call was made, and two angels came as quickly as they could.
The nurse who came was absolutely outstanding. She, with the help of her trainee, did everything they could to make Dad more comfortable. Then, they took a little time to make us feel better.
Meanwhile, we had contacted my sister and her husband, who had flown in from Hawaii last night (they were just next door, so they came right over). It’s a long trip to Florida, especially right after the Memorial Day weekend, but they made it in Tuesday evening and got to spend a little time with Dad. They had hardly any communication, unfortunately, but Dad knew his eldest daughter had finally made it in to see him. The rest of us “kids” had come in over the weekend.
Then the angels went back to work. They did more to help Dad feel better and cleaned him up. Finally, the head nurse / angel noticed that Dad’s eyes and eyelids had “stuff” on them. So, she cleaned his eyes.
With his eyes now clear so that he could see where he was going, he took his final breath.
My Dad, whose first gift he ever gave to me was his own name, was 81. And to this day, I am proud to wear that moniker.
Rest in peace, Dad. Someday, we shall meet again.