Death is inevitable. It is either the end or a beginning. The end of what we call life and the beginning of what is after.
I have seen it in my family and at work. I have seen my parents slowly fading away. I have seen many patients took their last breath.
My mother died a few days after my birthday and her last words were ” Toto, indi ko na kaya. Thank you and I love you. ” Then she slowly faded away. Her body, the vessel of her soul, was still there. We could still hold her but she was no longer there. The next several hours were the longest. We took turns in holding her until she took her last breath. My last hope for miracle also disappeared.
When my father died, it was more difficult because I was thousands of miles away. We were only connected through a rectangular slab of electronic device which was my iPhone. Before his heart gave in, he gave me a forced smile. Somehow reassuring me that everything would be fine. But I saw it in his eyes – the look of impending doom. I saw it many times in my patients. Watching him being revived was heart wrenching to say the least. It was not a peaceful passing I was hoping for.
As a nurse, I have seen how patients come to terms with their fate. There is always an element of shock because although we know that someday we will reach our end, nothing can prepare us from being told that death is just round the corner.
Most people do not fear dying but they do fear dying alone. It is the thought of leaving this world without their loved ones. What would be more daunting than to take that last breath inside an empty room. No one can exactly say when your time is up but an experienced nurse can surely say that your time is near.
So we say, Rest In Peace.