I choked up as I thought about it. I felt sick. I went to church at 8:00 am this morning. I was standing there with a heavy heart. It was the very same time when he died. Everything happened around 11:00 pm to midnight (Manila time) two years ago.
I remember on that day, I just stayed beside him. He really loved listening to me and my siblings sing. So I sang any song that came to mind. All songs I could ever think of. We kept singing and talking to him despite that he was unconscious. Sometimes he was awake but we knew he was not the same. It was always just a blank stare. I held his hands as if it was the last time.
It was 11:00 pm when I received a message to proceed to the Intensive Care Unit. I had a bad feeling. I just left him 30 minutes ago and everything was fine. His operation (Tracheotomy) was a success. He was finally relieved from the tube he had for two weeks.
The nurse told me that he was stable. I could go and rest. I sent my good news to my siblings and everyone was pleased. We were all holding on to HOPE.
Everything quickly changed in just an hour.
I was walking towards the ICU and from afar I could see what was happening. His room was packed with nurses and a doctor. The room was very busy. They were all trying to revive him. I could hear them. I was just less than 10 feet away. I sat on a chair and I had to lay my head down on the table. I knew it was the end. I was so numb. I cried quietly. The doctor approached me and told me that they had to stop reviving him.
I had to make calls to tell the family. They all came and we did what we had to do. Then for the very first time, I went home. I fell asleep on his bed. We were all so very very tired emotionally and physically. I had no more strength.
Sometimes I would ask why did I have to see all that. It really broke my heart. I know that every time this day comes, I would feel the same way and I will remember EVERYTHING. For the rest of my life.
It is true what they say. In time you will no longer feel much pain. You will keep moving. You’ll finally get used to the absence.
As much as I love him, I try not to dwell on the thought that we lost him. I try to see it in a different perspective. He lives in us, we carry him in our hearts.
I still cry but not as much as I did. When he crosses my mind I feel sad but I feel much stronger now.
Although there are moments when I can’t help the tears especially when things around me bring vivid memories of him.
Like last night my kids were playing with their Dad. My little girl was walking on his back and saying that she’s giving him a massage. I remembered during our younger days when we would do the same. Tears fell from my eyes.
Just a while ago when we were watching one of our favorite comedy shows, if featured the 1980 something show called Knight Rider. I remembered the talking black car called KITT, that drove super fast, was bulletproof, fireproof, and helped Michael fought injustices in the world. It brought up some childhood memories. My siblings and I were fond of the super powered car that we named our family car, Kit. If I remember it right, our father even put up a moving light in front of our car pretending that we’re really driving Kit! Something like this:
Every morning, to wake up my kids, I put up the curtain and let the sunlight into our bedroom. I talk to them or sing to them just the way our old man did.
I know there will be more reminders along the way. One clear proof that our love ones continue to live…
It was July 2, 2014 when my kids and I left. We came home for a month to take care of him after being so ill. But that day I felt relieved. At least, I knew that he was doing much better before saying goodbye. Although he was in so much pain and was still very weak, he got up using his walking aid. In my head I can still see him standing from afar, watching us as we were walking down this path.
Photo Credit: Lyn Lazaro, my sister-in-law
The next time I saw him was the following year, July 26, 2015. Comatose. God gave me a chance to be with him for 9 days. It is just sad that my last memories of him was those painful days in the hospital.
It has been six months now since he left. Earlier, I started deleting some photos from my phone taken when he was in the hospital. Maybe this is a sign of healing. But I still could not help the tears when I think about him…