the decision

My dad had stopped near a huge window in the waiting room, it had a decent view of outside, it was a hospital view but non the less it brought in a little sunshine into a dark room.  I stood by his side for a few minutes and said to him "I'm taking the baby dad" he looked at me and shook his head then turned away and wiped his eyes and replied to me "I know, we will discuss all this later". 
A few family/friends had come over to us, I hugged my dad and I walked back into the family room to check on the girl's and my mom, my sister was still praying I'm assuming with Eugene.  Eugene you ask?  when my sister and I had gone down to the chapel earlier in the morning we kind of got locked in, they were painting the outside walls and not looking before they blocked/taped off the door to the chapel, we had a hard time getting out.  Eugene was the one who un-taped the doorway and made a sliver of an exit for us, saw that we were upset and asked if there was anything he could do, my sister immediately told him "please pray for our family" Eugene was ready and offered at that very moment, my sister declined and said we would be back.  To this day I'm not sure if she found Eugene or not but knew she was down at the chapel for sometime before she came back up to the family room.

I went into the family room to find my mom laying back down, my girl's had left and went to the waiting room to visit with family that was more than willing to comfort them and support them since non of us knew what was going on.  I knelt down and caressed my mom's face, she opened her eyes and she greeted me with "how are you sweetie?" I told her I was fine, I was, I felt great, I felt like we were making head-way on what needed to be done and we were going to fix this, fix her and she would be able to raise her son as she had talked non stop about for 8 months, I knew this I felt this but the reality was more apparent and I told my mom "we have to say goodbye, we have to let her go" she sat up, she did not cry, she grabbed my face, my hands and said "I know".  My dad had come back in the family room bringing my girl's with him, my sister followed shortly, it was mid afternoon now and we knew the nurse would be back out shortly and as we expected, the doors opened and she came out with papers and clipboard in hand.  The 6 of us were all sitting together in the family room, while our family and friends were respectful enough to let us have some time, the nurse looked at my dad and explained the DNR paperwork that she had for him and my mom to sign.  She began to explain to us that she was not responding well to the antibiotics and during the course of late last night & up to now her body, her organs were beginning to shut down and they feared when they began the blood transfusion that she may not be strong enough to complete the process, no one said a word, we all sat still like good students getting instruction for our daily lesson.  She then explained how the DNR would work and that if something happened and she took a turn for the worse they would not take measures to save her life, my mom put her hands over her face and cried, my girl's held one another and my sister and I sat arm and arm, my dad then stood up and said "this is what we want, we don't want her to suffer anymore, we need to do this for her, she put up a good fight, she has been beyond brave!" the nurse hugged my dad and said "I understand, please trust me, you are doing the right thing in making this decision for your daughter" my dad then took the clipboard and signed where he was instructed. 
She told us she would allow all of us to go see her before they started the procedure and that it would be a few hours before we would be allowed back into see her, we all began to discuss who would go in first and what we would tell her, we truly believe she had been listening to us this entire time anyway, this would be the one visit with her that ``really`` counted when just then, the doors to the ICU unit flew open, huge heavy double doors, the nurse assistant looked past us to our head nurse and said, her heart rate is dropping fast, she is going NOW.....I can't tell you how 6 of us fit through that family room doorway but we did and with 2 or 3 other family members from the waiting room we all rushed into her room just in time, well, we had hoped, the nurses seemed to be in slow motion yet they seemed to have been turned off and moving some of the machines away from her bed, she had passed as we all entered the ICU unit, she had taken her last breath, her soul was now, finally, going to rest in peace!

It was moments later,  I turned around and the only ones left in her room were me and my daughter, she was across the bed and I was hugging the ventilator, I had it up to my ear listening to her breath, I thought to myself how can she really be gone, she looks so beautiful lying there, I noticed they had taped her eyes closed and then I lost it, my daughter was pleading for her to come back, my cousin was behind me holding me up.  I turned and asked her where everyone had gone, she told me my folks left the hospital, my youngest daughter, my sister and her husband had all gone back to the waiting room.  I can not tell you how long we were in her room after the Dr called her time of death on 09/01/2006 @ 1532 hours but I can tell you I was NOT letting go of that ventilator, it symbolized her and I was not ready to let her go!
The nurse came in and told me she needed my parents to sign some documents and extended her deepest apologies for our loss and how truly sorry and heart broken she was, I thanked her for all she had done especially making my parents feel so comfortable about the DNR process.  She then asked with respect that they start to clean the room and prepare her body to be taken away, my sister came back into the room at that time, my cousin followed m daughter out and my sister and I stood there in total and utter complete shock that our youngest sibling was lying in front of us, a new mother, a proud mother, a proud woman who had come so far in her young life and had huge accomplishments only to now enjoy none of them, that thought was extremely overwhelming for us both, I mean this was NOT seen or expected by any of us!
With one of us on each side of her, holding her hands, I kissed her forehead one more time as did my sister we whispered that we loved her so very much and removed the tape from her eyes so we could say good-bye then we slowly left the room.  We entered the elevator and rode it at least 4 times up and down, up and down, up and down I, we could not bring ourselves to get off, it meant we would be leaving her here, she would never be coming home, it meant she was really gone.

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