Tuesday, February 3, 2009

RIP Daddy! May 28, 1950 ~ February 2, 2009

Last night @ approximately 11:08 PM EST, my daddy left this world with his family by his side! My son, Brandon, was in his room...talking to him, reading him a Bible verse...he came out & said that my father's heart kept stopping for long periods of time and that we needed to get in there. I walked as fast as I could with him and we were the first two in his room. I stared at the monitor and could see the triangle and then the straight line that went on and on and then a triangle and a long, long line and then a triangle and a line......and then he was gone.

My sisters & I, my son, Brandon, two of my dad's brothers, my sisters fiance Grant, my sister Robyn's husband Kevin......My cousin Jeffrey.....if I left anyone out...I'm sorry.....were in the room. I knew one day he would die....I just never thought it would be now.

I go back and forth between numb & sadness & then numb again. I am not angry. I know that he is in a better place now. He doesn't hurt. He isn't sad. He is with the Lord, with my baby cousin, Jeffrey who I never knew; with my cousin, Jana; with my MeMa. I keep thinking it's just a dream, and I'm going to wake up, and he's going to be there....but he's not.

I keep thinking back in my mind to all the good things I can remember about him. How goofy he was when he felt good, how much he loved Duke Basketball, how he would eat these pink candy lozenges and how we would beg for them, how he would bring me these little plastic containers of candy when he would come home from work when I was a little girl, how he would take Brandon to all of the Bunn football games when he was little, how he always loved Ginger Ale, his silly faces, when he came to my work with a brand new, red Toyota Tercel....so many things.

I am trying not to think about the bad things or how much my heart hurts right now, and it's 3:15 AM EST and I cannot sleep even though I have tried.....So, I write...

When myself & my sisters, Lori & Robyn, got to the hospital yesterday, my sister, Heather was already there. She told us that he was being weaned off of one of the meds they were giving him to keep his blood pressure up and that they were going to take him off of sedation meds to see if he had any brain function, but that it would be quick. We went in to see him, and he was stable, but no better. The next time I went in there things had changed drastically. We were told that he had dangerous levels of Potassium in his body. His heart rate was erratic, his BP had dropped, his pulse rate had dropped and his temperature had dropped. They put a warming blanket on him and added Calcium to his meds to try to counteract the Potassium. His nurse was very blunt with us and told us that if this didn't work, there was nothing else they were going to be able to do for him and it would just be a matter of time, and he would be gone. They had to add a BP med back and were having to do it every 15 minutes (again, a very bad sign) and before I left the room, the nurse had doubled the dosage. They were able to start trying to draw fluid off of him with the dialysis machine in the hope that his kidneys would start working again, but it never got to that point.

After he was gone, the doctor told us that because they could not determine what caused my daddy to die, there would be a mandatory autopsy that would take 24-48 hours. This is not due to the fact that they suspect foul play. It is due to the fact that they had to make sure no infectious diseases were involved, etc. I didn't want an autopsy done, but since I didn't have to make that decision, in a way I am glad. It isn't going to bring my father back, but at least if they can determine what caused him to deteriorate so quickly, maybe I can find some sort of peace & closure in the knowledge.

I am thankful that my sisters and I never had to make the decision to take my daddy off of life support. I am thankful that we didn't have to decide whether or not to have an autopsy performed. God spared us of that burden, and now we can grieve and gather our memories and think about my dad during the good times.

A Bible verse keep coming to my mind, and I want to share it with you:

The LORD Is My Shepherd
A Psalm of David.

1 The LORD is my shepherd; I shall not want.
2 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures:

he leadeth me beside the still waters.
3 He restoreth my soul:

he leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name's sake.
4 Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,

I will fear no evil: for thou art with me;
thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.
5 Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies:

thou anointest my head with oil;
my cup runneth over.
6 Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life:

and I will dwell in the house of the LORD for ever.

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