March 8 - distinct memories start that evening when his sister Trudy came over to visit. Dale was more alert than he had been for several days. He responded to her voice and cried. He said I love you to her, to me and to Carolyn. (Was that my clue it was the last night?)
Meds time, but this time they didn’t go down smoothly, maybe I didn’t wake him up enough. He choked. It was awful. I called the hospice nurse and was told to roll him on his side and pat his back. It did help. How I wish I had crawled onto that bed and held him.
When Dale’s father died in Oct and we knew Dale was very sick, we discussed how people sometimes wait for everyone to leave the room before they die. I asked him to please let me be there. He agreed. I should have asked that I be awake. I fell asleep with my head on the hospice bed holding his hand. I was startled awake and realized he wasn’t breathing. It was midnight. I ran and woke Carolyn up, she came out and lifted his other hand off his chest and the last breath of air exited his lungs.
I called the funeral home, hospice, family, my pastor. Pastor Jack, Doris, Trudy, DJ came. As they arrived it was snowing, and Trudy said he was getting in one last snowball fight. They came to take the body. Frisky was on the bed where she had been for most of the week, barely leaving Dale’s side. Carolyn and I went to the bedroom, and soon someone brought Frisky back hissing and scratching, she did not want them to take him away.
March 9 was spent- sleeping, not sleeping, telling people, crying, friends came over with food. Dad made plans to come for the funeral.
10 years later I and it feels like yesterday. Grief is a journey.