Turns out not so much.
My dad has taken ill again, after the euhoria of the first few days home. I am hoping it is just the reaction of being at home, away from the constant hospital care, and settling into the reality of a finite future.
But Ihaven’t even seen him yet! I have had a low grade cold for weeks now and can’t shake it. It is not enough to make me truly sick, just miserable, but my stepmama doesn’t want me to visit and I agree. I feel so sad. All I’ve done is talk to him, in tiny phone bursts, and it isn’t enough.
I am scared that they will put him back into hospital, he will deteriorate further and I just won’t get the chance to experience any of the good time I was looking forward to. Yeah, I know, all about me. But about him, too. I know he would want to spend that time with me if he was well enough to spare enough energy to want anything. Which he isn’t, so he doesn’t. It is miserable for him.
Speaking of misery, how come we are allowed to put animals ‘out of their misery’ and it is called humane, yet if you do the same thing to people it is called murder or manslaughter? Everybody grows up with a story of their pets going to live on a farm when they got old; my parents didn’t quite tell me that but I did have the misguided belief that all of them died naturally. There was one, a pet lamb, who was sent to a sheep station to ‘live out its days’ once it grew too much for the household but apart from that, no farm.
My dad may or may not die naturally. It might be a side effect from the medications for pain, it might be his stressed organs giving out, it might be the cancer invading somewhere it shouldn’t be, catastrophically. No matter which way, none of those deaths are what I would choose for him.
I would choose to send him to live happily on a farm somewhere, rocking on a porch at sunset, admiring the view, feeling the breeze.