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Old 08-30-2012, 06:29 PM
GPC GPC started this thread
 
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My father passed away on August 15. He was almost 86 and tired of living. My mother passed away 6 years ago and he missed her terribly. I'm so grateful I was able to be with my father in his final days. I spent countless hours by his bedside and didn't leave him at all in his final three days. He couldn't speak at the end which I suppose is common. The day of his death all forms of communication stopped (although I talked to him practically non-stop!). However, the day before that he was squeezing my hand, moaning at key times (like when the hospice nurse would say things like he can hear you, keep talking to him) and really opening his eyes wide at me. The nurses would tell me that those were his ways of letting me know I was with him. I'm so hoping that was true. I'd love to hear what anyone else thinks. I can't imagine squeezing my hand was any sort of involuntary reflex action but still...I wonder... There were times he squeezed it super hard (which I didn't mind even though it was a bit uncomfortable!). All I cared about was that he knew I was there. I was holding his hand at the very moment of his death. I've heard some people prefer to be alone when they pass but my father didn't seem agitated at all by me being there. I miss him so. I'd really appreciate if anyone can chime in about how my father was hopefully communicating with me. It's so important to me that he knew I was there. Thanks.
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Old 08-30-2012, 06:37 PM
 
Location: Wisconsin
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I'm sorry for your loss. Thank for the beautiful comments.
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Old 08-30-2012, 07:09 PM
 
Location: Olympia, WA
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GPC, please accept my sincere condolences for the loss of your father. I have lost both of my parents, and recently loss my husband. He passed away in his sleep, at home in his own bed.

I have no doubt that your father knew you were there. Please take comfort in that. It sounds like his body was shutting down and the hand-squeezing was one of the few things he could do to communicate with you. You are to be commended for spending his last days at his bedside; he knew you were there for him. what a comfort that must have been for him.

Like my husband, I'm sure your dad appreciated all you did for him. If he was ready to go, and I'm sure he felt that way, he knew he could go without fear and was comforted by your presence.

May God bless you and give you peace in your time of loss and grieving.
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Old 08-30-2012, 07:26 PM
GPC GPC started this thread
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tngirl205 View Post
GPC, please accept my sincere condolences for the loss of your father. I have lost both of my parents, and recently loss my husband. He passed away in his sleep, at home in his own bed.

I have no doubt that your father knew you were there. Please take comfort in that. It sounds like his body was shutting down and the hand-squeezing was one of the few things he could do to communicate with you. You are to be commended for spending his last days at his bedside; he knew you were there for him. what a comfort that must have been for him.

Like my husband, I'm sure your dad appreciated all you did for him. If he was ready to go, and I'm sure he felt that way, he knew he could go without fear and was comforted by your presence.

May God bless you and give you peace in your time of loss and grieving.
Thank you so much. Your words mean alot to me. I'm sorry for the loss of your parents and husband. It's been hard enough losing both of my parents; I can't even imagine how hard it would be to lose my husband.
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Old 08-30-2012, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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I'm sorry to hear about your father. I think he knew you were there the whole time and squeezing your hand was a way to let you know that. He could hear you and talking to him must have given him a lot of comfort. I hope that I'm not alone when I die, and that I have someone like you to look after me. You did a great thing for your dad.
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Old 08-30-2012, 08:44 PM
GPC GPC started this thread
 
1,192 posts, read 2,655,607 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by zitsky View Post
I'm sorry to hear about your father. I think he knew you were there the whole time and squeezing your hand was a way to let you know that. He could hear you and talking to him must have given him a lot of comfort. I hope that I'm not alone when I die, and that I have someone like you to look after me. You did a great thing for your dad.
Thank you for your response. It was a physically and emotionally exhausting experience but I wouldn't have had it any other way. All I could think of was how I'd wanted to be treated, that I could always catch up on sleep later, and - of course - how much I loved my father and wanted to make his transition as 'easy' as possible. My 16 year old son was with me the whole time too and was a HUGE help to me. He was my 'relief hand holder' - whenever I took a brief walk down the hall or went to the bathroom he held my father's hand in my place. My father squeezed his hand and looked at him bug-eyed too. The two of us were constantly on each side of my father's bed. I know people say the funeral is for the family and my father's funeral was 'nice' but even more important to me was being there for him in his final days. Of course, it was all about him during that time but it also meant so much to me to be able to do that for him. My son and I even waited for the mortuary guy to come after he passed. We wanted to stay with my father as long as possible. No one ever *likes* to check a loved one into a hospice but I can't speak highly enough of the nurses who worked there. They were wonderful and a hospice is so much better than a hospital for a person's last days.
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Old 08-31-2012, 06:45 AM
 
7,952 posts, read 8,290,121 times
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Quote:
My father passed away on August 15. He was almost 86 and tired of living. My mother passed away 6 years ago and he missed her terribly. I'm so grateful I was able to be with my father in his final days. I spent countless hours by his bedside and didn't leave him at all in his final three days. He couldn't speak at the end which I suppose is common. The day of his death all forms of communication stopped (although I talked to him practically non-stop!). However, the day before that he was squeezing my hand, moaning at key times (like when the hospice nurse would say things like he can hear you, keep talking to him) and really opening his eyes wide at me. The nurses would tell me that those were his ways of letting me know I was with him. I'm so hoping that was true. I'd love to hear what anyone else thinks. I can't imagine squeezing my hand was any sort of involuntary reflex action but still...I wonder... There were times he squeezed it super hard (which I didn't mind even though it was a bit uncomfortable!). All I cared about was that he knew I was there. I was holding his hand at the very moment of his death. I've heard some people prefer to be alone when they pass but my father didn't seem agitated at all by me being there. I miss him so. I'd really appreciate if anyone can chime in about how my father was hopefully communicating with me. It's so important to me that he knew I was there. Thanks.
Happy to listen. You are where I was 3 years and 5 months ago. My father's situation sounds fairly similar. he was 84 years old. He had been diagnosed four years before with colon cancer and despite aggressive treatment it could not be kept from spreading. Nevertheless, he was really in pretty good shape up until a few months before his death.

I remember the last day well. I didn't realize it was the last day. I had come over to my parents' home earlier that day before going to work which had become my habit. Dad was sleeping peacefully in bed and his sleep, while deep, seemed quite normal to me. He was not on any medication at all. He seemed to be quite comfortable without it and had consciously refused medication for days when it was offered him.

I spoke to him quietly and described my situation at work. I related my many triumphs both at work and home to him and at about age 50, I was doing well indeed. When I was done, I quietly left the room, said goodbye to my mother and drove to work. I didn't suspect anything out of the ordinary.

Two hours later at work, my cell phone rang. I saw my neighbor's caller i.d. on the phone. I guessed what the call was about and sadly, I was right.

I don't know whether your father was communicating with you or not. However, I'm glad you were there for him. That's really what counts. My advice to you is to remember the good times you had with your father. He'd probably appreciate that more than anything else you can do.
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Old 08-31-2012, 04:51 PM
 
Location: Hoping to settle down.
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I am sure the hand squeezing was your dad letting you know he could hear you. My condolences.
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Old 09-04-2012, 11:40 AM
 
Location: WA
604 posts, read 512,797 times
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GPC,

My deep condolences and prayers. Thank you for sharing, may my sharing strengthen about your Father's commmunication.

Briefly, Thursday evening, I was able to spend the night with DH in the nursing home; I spoke to him that morning,
a neighbor came that afternoon and he was now in a coma. Friday night, I got THE call. A neighbor took me to
see him. The neighbor asked how long-a couple of days.

Now. We entered DH room, she kissed him on the cheek, she didn't say anything to him nor he to her. Leaned
down to kiss him, I said "I Love You" and he replied "I Love You." Those were our last words to each other. The
Lord took him home to Heaven about 8 hours later.

(Note: DH died 6 months after being diagnosed with esophagus cancer, age 65. Usually we would read before
turning out the light, sometimes it would be 30 minutes later after he went to sleep, we always told each other
I Love You, even after he had been asleep!)

GPC, how wonderful your dear son was with you and his Grandfather; a dear son and Grandson.
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Old 09-07-2012, 12:55 AM
 
Location: Mid-Atlantic
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I know that he was aware of your presence. OK, I don't know, but feel that he did. I had a similar experience when my Dad passed. He was in cardiac ICU. A Dr. called us into the hall and quietly said that it wouldn't be long. Well, my mother cried on and off for hours, told him good-bye and that she would miss him countless times. Finally, Mom beckoned me into the hall and told me that she couldn't do this any longer. I told her to go to the cafeteria and get a bite to eat, take a break. When she returned, I said, "hey, remember when we took that beach vacation, a storm was moving up the coast and we had to evacuate"? For the next few hours Mom, my brother and I shared family stories. We actually laughed a few times. He was more responsive during those few hours than he had been for a couple of days. His eyes blinked rapidly, he squeezed a hand several times, monitors beeped and his heart rate fluctuated. He probably liked the fact that I reminded my brother that he totaled Dad's car.

He was very quiet, unresponsive for an hour and then he passed.

I'm sorry, for you, that your Dad is gone. My Dad has been gone for 15 years. If I had a million or a billion dollars, I would gladly pay to spend just an hour with him.
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