Author Topic: The last time I heard his voice  (Read 2768 times)

Baylee627

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The last time I heard his voice
« on: March 12, 2015, 01:16:27 AM »
A year ago, today, I had left work for a mid-day therapy appointment. My habit was to call my bestie and gab with her while I raced to my therapist's office. But that day, I had this "inner check" that I should call DH instead. Thank heavens I listened to my instinct, because it was to be the last time I heard his voice.

We spoke about his hectic day at work, and in true Brooks fashion, he wanted to know the deets about what I would be making for dinner that night. I explained I was actually going to be trying out a new recipe, and he wanted the 4-1-1 regarding the ingredients, but with specific emphasis on whether or not there would be enough beef in it for his liking. What can I say, the man loved dinner!

Just before hanging up, we exchanged "I love you's" and I said: ok, bye!  He had this slightly pregnant pause and hesitantly said: bye. I remember wondering if there was something more he'd wanted to say. I briefly entertained calling him back straightaway,  but realized I was already running late for therapy. Well, I'd mused, I'll ask him about that tonight at dinner; it'll keep til then

No sooner had my session wrapped, and my phone was blowing up - messages from all mine and his family, texts...I had a chilled, sinking feeling as my cell rang in my hands. My SIL asked me if I'd spoken to my in-laws...no...

She relayed, in her calm manner, that Brooks had had another seizure at work and was going to be care flighted into the hospital. Screaming and in floods of tears, I collapsed onto the floor if the lobby of the doctor's office. Trembling, I reached my FIL on his cell. He confirmed seizures and then added that Brooks was suffering a "little trouble breathing" so he was intubated.

What the hell? Surely some mistake...

Panic stricken, I sped to the hospital. His helicopter had not arrived yet. I went outside and stood as close to the landing pad as was permitted. Finally, around 45 minutes later, it landed. I watched as they were unloading Brooks' gurney...much too slowly. My guts literally twisted because they were being so careful--too careful, more so than I'd ever seen.

It was over 30 min before a nurse came out and addressed me. He said: your husband is in critical condition; he's on the vent, and he's in a coma. I just wanted to prepare you.

I don't remember this, but my mom said that she and a nurse caught me as I passed out. The next thing I do recall is awaking in some sort of private waiting room. Finally, the trauma nurse brought me back to the trauma room. There he was, lying flatter than looked normal on his gurney, blood pooling beneath his head from the gash to his occipital scalp and trickling onto the floor, and collecting, shapeless, but spreading. The sight was devastating. I whispered to Mom: this looks like a funeral pit.

Whatever that is. All I feared is that what I was seeing was not compatible with life.

The trauma physician ticked off all of Brooks' current issues: Acute Respiratory Failure, Acute Kidney Failure, Shock Liver, rhabdomyolysis and a GCS of 3.

Oh my God, oh my God.

The neurosurgeon joined us in the trauma room. He stated that preliminary CT'S and other tests showed cerebral edema and demonstrated increased intracranial pressure. He implored that we must act quickly because Brooks' best line of defense was a ventriculostomy.

I asked: will he make it through that? Will he be okay?

His eyes flickered,  and he pointed to Heaven and said: we need Him.

He made it through the first hurdle, the surgery.  The neurosurgeon warned us that the next 48 hours would be critical, and would "tell the tale." He did allow that he had hope for Brooks because he was a fighter. We were admitted to the ICU that evening, and my MIL and I kept bedside vigil next to his bed.

Something that they don't tell you about coma patients is that they aren't necessarily still and peacefully sleeping like you see in the movies or TV. No, they thrash about, their arms and legs flail, they grimace, etc. Brooks was so agitated his back would raise right off the mattress. He had to be restrained, which broke my heart. Especially when he resisted against them. But he was still on life support, so it was a necessary evil.

The nurse turned on classical music as part of Brooks' music therapy. I'm sure he'd have preferred country, but the nurse chose the channel over my suggestion. I'll never forget that at about 3am, the instrumental version of "Moon River" came on.

Later, I reflected on the lyrics and was struck by the poignancy.

Moon river, wider than a mile,
I'm crossing you in style--someday.
oh, you dream maker, you're a heartbreaker,
wherever you're going, I'm going your way.

Baylee
« Last Edit: March 12, 2015, 11:00:03 AM by Baylee627 »
Though lovers be lost, love shall not, and death shall have no dominion--Dylan Thomas

Mr C

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #1 on: March 12, 2015, 02:46:53 AM »
(((Baylee)))

The stories that you and lcoxwell have been sharing are so beautifully written and emotionally touching. Thank You.
Mrs.C, You have been my Sweetheart, Best Friend and Love since 1987. You will be my Wife forever and ever and ever. Love Always, Mr. C

BrokenHeart2

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #2 on: March 12, 2015, 03:20:31 AM »
Mr C said it so well. I'm sorry Baylee. It's hard to believe its been a year and probably feels like yesterday. That how it felt for me.
Hugs to you
I don't want it to be his legacy that his death destroyed me.
I need to honour his life by rebuilding my life.

Jen

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #3 on: March 12, 2015, 07:24:31 AM »
Baylee... I'm in tears reading this. I wish I had better words. I'm so sorry. ((((HUGS))))
I have love in me the likes of which you can scarcely imagine and rage the likes of which you would not believe. If I cannot satisfy the one, I will indulge the other. ~Mary Shelley, Frankenstein

"Dying is easy. Living is hard. ~George Washington, Hamilton

Jess

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #4 on: March 12, 2015, 08:52:59 AM »
Beautifully told. My thoughts are with you.
On particularly rough days when I'm sure I can't possibly endure, I like to remind myself that my track record for getting through bad days so far is 100% and that's pretty good. - Unknown

Don't be concerned about being disloyal to your pain by being joyous. - Hazrat Inayat Khan

Joe: 1979- 7/2014

lcoxwell

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #5 on: March 12, 2015, 12:33:18 PM »
From the bottom of my heart, thank you for sharing your story.  Reading this breaks my heart, for you and for all that you have lost.  It is gut wrenching, reliving those last moments, but I hope you are finding, as did I, that there is something therapeutic about putting our stories in writing and sharing them with others.

Something that they don't tell you about coma patients is that they aren't necessarily still and peacefully sleeping like you see in the movies or TV. No, they thrash about, their arms and legs flail, they grimace, etc. Brooks was so agitated his back would raise right off the mattress. He had to be restrained, which broke my heart. Especially when he resisted against them. But he was still on life support, so it was a necessary evil.

^^^ For the last several years of my Kenneth's life, he was in and out of the ICU, often due to being in and out of a comatose state.  This brought back memories of all the times he had to be restrained, and even though he was unable to open his eyes or respond, even when he was intubated and agitated, he would always settle down, when I held his hand and spoke to him.  It truly saddened me to see him retrained, like that.  I am sorry you had to watch your Brooks go through it, too.  ((((Sweet Lady))))
"The highest tribute to the dead is not grief but gratitude." - Thornton Wilder

Thank you, my dearest Kenneth, for loving me and for giving me the best 13 years of my life.

theheneghans

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #6 on: March 12, 2015, 02:16:05 PM »
(((Baylee)))

This was beautifully written.
Me: 30|DH:4/12/85-6/16/14|QPH born 9/28/14

Mac

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #7 on: March 12, 2015, 08:21:54 PM »
(((Baylee)))
Grateful for the past. Embracing the present. Trusting in the future.

Virgo

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Re: The last time I heard his voice
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2015, 12:40:44 AM »
((Baylee))
Jen

"Don't cry because it's over. Smile because it happened." Dr. Seuss