I got to Vegas on Saturday afternoon. Ann's father had been transferred to a hospice facility earlier in the week. I met her at the facility and was immediately impressed by the home-like surroundings and the level of care by the staff. Each time the nurse came in to do something, she bent down and spoke into his ear, explaining what she was going to do and why. Most people probably would have just addressed themselves to the family members, instead of the patient.
"Dad" was in a coma, but was holding on until his son, a pilot, could fly out from St Louis. But the son had been bumped from his first flights and the flight he finally got on was delayed. With only about three minutes before the car could get him to the hospice, Dad's breathing got very irregular, and we were afraid he wouldn't last. The brother got there with just minutes to spare. After visiting with his father for a bit, telling him what all the children were up too, and sharing memories of road trips, Dad died with his family around him.
I stayed to help Ann get caught up with her paperwork for the end of the school year next week. She teaches kindergarden at a twelve-month school and needed to get report cards and permanent records completed to pass along to the next teacher. Then she had me laminate a zillion things for the next term, which starts in 3 weeks. I am a laminating and trimming whiz now!!
But I had to go home before the funeral today. I think she and her Mom are doing as well as can be expected.
When I went to Vegas, I really had no idea what I was doing there. All I knew is that she needed my help. But actually watching someone pass form this life into another is unexpectedly intimate. I feel like I probably would if I helped to deliver her baby. A powerful moment shared. I will remember this forever.
As I type this, we are surrounded by tornado warnings and severe thunderstorms. What a welcome home!! I hope for better weather tomorrow.