Monday, October 21, 2013

At the departure gate once again

Having experienced quite a few departures already this year, I was hoping I would ride out the rest of the year in peace. But the trend continues its inevitable, inexorable path through the remainder of the year. F-i-L's losing his battle with cancer. Initially, radiotherapy seemed to have it beaten back, but all of a sudden in the last few weeks, it came back with a vengeance.

F-i-L's physical deterioration has been rapid and alarming. From the jolly, portly, happy-go-lucky gentleman that he was, the disease has wasted him down to... shall we say, his most basic structure? His once healthy appetite reduced to taking sips of fruit juice periodically over the day to sustain him. Now as he rests in the hospice, the doctor reports a significant drop in blood pressure...

I think back to last Saturday, when he was still lucid and made a bit of a show in presenting his grandsons a souvenir each to remember him by. At first, I thought it went somewhat over-the-top, in full view of the other hospice patients and all. But now I believe his timing was just right. Things moved so very quickly immediately after that, so if not then, there wouldn't have been another opportunity to make them promise to study hard and make him proud.

His closest kin are keeping vigil overnight. This night in particular might just be the longest night for the family.

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