30 April 2013
Final Hours (pt. 1)
Thursday. 11 PM.
Nothing brings a man to his knees quicker than a tragedy, especially one over which he has no control.
Nearly twelve hours ago I got a phone call that my great grandma, resilient at 81 years old, fell and suffered a cerebral hemorrhage and was being transferred to a larger, more capable hospital. I ran a few errands and was on the way to the hospital a few hours later and have been here ever since.
The hardest thing--harder than reliving memories or thinking about what she'll miss out on or how our family will react as a unit after--is really not knowing where her soul hangs in the balance. Because, really, even if she were the most devout person in the world, there's no way I can know for certain. I can guess or suppose or give myself or others comfort thinking it will all be okay, but that space of uncertainty is still there and there's nothing I can do about it.
Friday. 1.30 AM.
Our last family member coming in for the evening is here. Tomorrow until Monday more people will be arriving by plane, train and automobile from around the country and abroad (my estimate is 25 people). Services are expected Tuesday.
It strikes me as odd that, despite the grave circumstances, I am very happy to see everyone arriving. Then I realized that it makes perfect sense considering our family. Ours is huge (I have cousins whose names I don't even know) and it's a perfect testament to the woman my great grandmother is whose defining feature is love. As the matriarch of our family, she has been our strength and a fount flowing abundantly with love.
Friday. 2.30 AM.
Everyone is going to sleep now in these adjoining waiting rooms (which our family have taken over like crazy people, there are so many of us). I believe we are going to keep waiting until more people arrive in the morning and hear from a couple people. My great grandma is in as stable condition as she's going to get, though she's only being held in place by machine work.
Tomorrow (or today, I suppose it is) will be a very difficult and long day. I got a priest (I would have hunted him down if he was in the building instead of on call) to come and pray for her and bless her, but that's all he could do without her being a practicing Catholic, though she had been one at one point in her life. It brought me only some comfort at first because I felt a bit let down that she couldn't receive an anointing, but better after because I realized I've done all I /can/ do. I will still pray, but everything from this point on is God's plan (not that it wasn't always this way).
I'm going to end here and document the next few days in another post(s). Please take a moment to pray for her soul as her time draws closer.