The last 5 weeks have been the worst I can remember in my 54 years. I wouldn’t wish this emotional roller coaster on my worst enemy, if I had one. No one should ever have to go through this. Sadly though, it is part of the price we pay for living and loving.
For years he had dealt with fairly severe short term memory loss, which was extremely frustrating for him. He had been a well known and highly respected businessman. Not having a reliable memory made it virtually impossible for him to work any longer. That was unacceptable to him, so he’d find ways to mentor others. When he spoke to someone he was correct in the information he was giving. It was just that a few minutes later, he likely would not remember what had been said and he’d have the same conversation again. This weighed heavily on him.
We had always thought that it was his memory that would end his life as he was quite emphatic that he did not want to keep living if he didn’t have his mind.
Heart problems appear to run in the family as two of his siblings had heart attacks. One passed over 20 years ago and the other had had two bypass surgeries.
Dad was active and rarely ate red meat. He loved salads of all kinds. He took cholesterol-lowering meds and saw a cardiologist regularly. It’s probably why he lived to be 82 without any previous serious heart issues. So news that he needed bypass surgery came as a surprise.
His scorecard rating for risk of dying in the bypass surgery was as low as a much younger person. His percentage for co-morbidities, including severe complications or death from those, was a low 10%. I was there in the room when the doctor went over it with him. He understood the risks but there were no other options.
Stenting was not possible as one blockage of the 4 he had was in a spot that if something went wrong placing it, would kill him then and there.
Doing nothing was not an option because he could have had a massive stroke or heart attack at any time. Ones that may not have killed him but rather left him in a vegetative state.
So after reviewing the odds and options he chose surgery. I’m quite sure if he had known the end result of these last 5 weeks he might have made a different choice.
He had so many complications that I’m not sure I even remember them all. Many of you have followed my Twitter updates on the subject. If you did read them, you know it was quite a ride. Going forward one day and then next going several steps backward.
Ultimately, we decided that he, as we knew him, wasn’t coming back and that his physical body had enough and was giving out and giving up.
Mercifully, it didn’t take long after they removed everything for him to pass.
So now we rely on our memories of him. His DNA lives on in my sister and me, along with our children.
Bye daddy…see you someday on the other side.