I wondered if it would be different. If it would feel different. Not a dying patient. A dying Grandmother.
My sister and I went to her together, and seeing her instantly knew.
Not different. Well. It is what I do.
Both us glad that Mom and Dad hadn't arrived yet, stroked her head and told her it was ok. That she could go. We encouraged her to go right then and there, being selfish and wanting the moment for ourselves.
Funny that she ended up here. Not funny Ha-Ha.
She'd never lived here. I didn't grow up with her. She visited once a year. Maybe less.
I never knew her really. Not as a person, like I've come to know many of my patients. I knew her for her stylish clothes, cosmetic smells, big jewelry, coffee cake that was more crumbs than cake, crates of oranges and grapefruits sent up each winter from Florida.
When she needed help taking care of herself and was moved up here, I was living in Vermont and visited once a year. Maybe less.
And she moved from assisted living to this nursing home. And she went through a few roommates. I'd be picky too. She settled in with a lovely lady, Lila. Who happened to have lived very close to where I grew up. They got along just fine.
And? Lila has a great grandson. A Deaf one. Who happens to go to school with Owen.
Funny where we end up. And with whom. And what becomes of our plans.
She'd made plans, fifteen years ago. Plans for the end. A handwritten letter to her son, my father.
Plans for Whenever. With insistence that there be No need for anyone to go running around and all that nonsense!!
Practical I suppose she was. And a little sentimental.
Everyone has been good to me, and can remember me or not, as I was.
Mom and Dad and my brother arrived. We read her letter and laughed. And looked at pictures and laughed.
Maybe she was waiting for the nonsense to be over. Not two hours after we left, she left.
The end was dignified and peaceful and almost 96 years in the making. Nothing to be sorry for.
We should all be so lucky.
Guess that's it.