Friday, September 21, 2012

John didn't make it

When John fell on August 15th, he hit his head, probably on the grandmother clock at the foot of the stairs. The epidural hematoma, aka "brain bleed," was so large that it severely injured John's brain. I don't even want to discuss the details of his injury nor the proposals of his physicians, all of which pointed to a severe loss of the person who was John. But, I believe he understood me when I told him we were invoking his living will, because he appeared to yield and die within 36 hours of arriving at inpatient hospice care. He left us on August 25th. I don't want to discuss that, either. The last two or three hours of his life were calmer, as apnea gradually overtook him. Poor sweet puppy, you left us waay too soon, but perhaps about right for you. I wanted you with me for a longer time.

Now, nearly four weeks later, after a memorial mass, a brief but loving committal service and lots of support from friends and relatives, I'm beginning to recover my own sense of self and responsibilities. My period of bereavement is gradually subsiding. I am engaged in the new projects that John left me. I am asking all John's health care providers for a reduced settlement, so that all may receive something. The garage has been re-roofed. The fence is removed and the north side replaced (not without some flak from the cranky neighbor to the north). I will decide today or tomorrow who gets to paint the garage. I am recording John's DVD, CD and vinyl collections for eventual sale to the highest bidder. One of these days, I will escape from Northwest Indiana to a home somewhere else, like Hyde Park. Or elsewhere, who knows. I am still discussing with God the next phase of my life, but it's much too early in the conversation to disclose details.

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