|Posted by firstname.lastname@example.org on July 16, 2020 at 3:05 AM|
The paramedics tell us, Meet us at the hospital, but don't speed in our path. Follow the law and drive safe. I'm glad they said it. It didn't occur to me.
They leave with Ben and Lisa has already packed 2 bags. One for Ben, and one for me. Clean clothes, toothbrushes, waters. We get in the car and drive. I can't believe they asked what I want! (It's not until the next day that I realise... we have a 'wishes to die at home' request in our papers... How were they to know we didn't get that plan made yet? Everything went too fast.)
We are at the hospital shortly after the ambulance. I enter and find Ben in an ER room.
It's just the two of us. He's had more pain meds and is outwardly calmer. But his breathing is still labourous and he's on double oxygen now- a tube in his nose and a mask on his mouth. His eyes are wide, he's fully awake. I take his hand as the doctor rolls in with the ultrasound machine.
"Hi, hi, are you okay?" I whisper and squeeze his hand.
Without any fanfare, he looks me dead in the eyes and says, 'I'm gonna...(gasp)... Call It...(gasp)...this ...(gasp)...is my (gasp)....last ....(gasp)....night...."
"No!" I sob. "Nooo...."
Tears fill my eyes. I pause and look at him. Raspy, gasping, skinny, in pain. Everything he did not want. And in that moment, I know....
Slowly, I exhale.
"Okay," I say to him with a brave smile. I turn to the doctor, 'Doctor? Did you hear my husband? He's ready to die. We have paperwork already done..."
The doctor nods and then softly speaks, "Your husband is correct. I see here a blood clot in his lungs. This is his last night."
I burst into tears and clutch Ben's hand, my head drooped down and my heart broken.
After a moment, I look up. Our eyes meet, I purse my lips to stop crying and give him my best smile. It's weak but I know it's important for him.
'Okay, honey. We heard you. Tonight is your last night. You called it.'