Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Things Change

I am sitting in the ICU waiting room writing this on my Treo 650 mobile phone. Charles is still with us and is breathing on his own. He came out of surgery this morning from having his trach installed. All treatments have ceased as nothing has been effective on the tumors. In fact, the respiratory distsress was caused by a new soft tissue mass restricting his airway.

Doctors are giving him less than two weeks. Of course, no one knows what to expect. We are attempting to arrange hospice care to get him out of this hospital and let him die with dignity. What am I going to do? I don't know. All I know is these are the last moments I will ever be able to spend with Charles on this earth. Nothing else matters.

I walked beside his bed holding his hand on the way to surgery. He kept looking up at me with his one good eye and squeezing my hand. "This is as far you can go, Sir," said the med tech pushing the bed. Charles and I looked at each other, "I'll be waiting for you when you wake up, Little Bro'." He nodded his head yes.

They wheeled him through the big double doors of the surgery ward. He looks so frail yet he is very brave and courageous. Greedily clinging to every last moment of life he can squeeze out of this existence. All day yesterday he was focused on CNN and the Terri Schiavo case. I think he empathizes with her plight that is so similar to his own at this moment.

Just before the surgery doors closed between us he gave the thumbs up sign...

10 comments:

E said...

I can't imagine what you're going through, T. Wish I could be there in some substantive form for you. Keep holding on. Myself and others are here for you should you require us.

Abby Taylor said...

I just got caught up with your posts, Tony. Continued prayers for Charles, you, and the rest of your family.

Kim said...

Your post brings back so many memories for me. I know how empty you feel right now, how angry. I hope your remaining time with him is of a quality that brings you peace and I want you to know that I'll be thinking about you.

MoxieGrrrl said...

I have no eloquence in these situations, so I'll just offer cyber(((HUGS))).

Kitty said...

Having just moved from northern VA to north Atlanta, I know the drive you had ahead of you . . . my thoughts and prayers are with you and your family as you are there for your brother.

Cyn said...

Just wanted you to know I have been reading and thinking of you and yours. Sending only the best vibes your way :)

Have you ever heard of or seen the monologue, God Said, Ha! ? If you haven't you might want to give it a look-see.

Linda Rae said...

Oh God bless you and your brother. Soak up every minute you can with him and tell him everything in the world you may have or have not wanted to tell him. Take this time to get it all out, for real. i wanted to write a long comment but I can't cause i am crying now.

Pam said...

My heart is hurting for you. I'm just so glad that you are able to be there for him. Pam

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Scrawler said...

Thinking of you during your difficult time. Glad you liked the blinkie though I didn't design it :)