When my wife was diagnosed with stage four pancreatic cancer at Memorial Hospital in Ft. Lauderdale, my world just stopped.
In a daze I heard the doctor mumbling words that I could not comprehend, but finally I started to understand what he was saying. We had to leave the hospital because there was nothing more that could be done for her.
We took her to a Hospice in Ft. Lauderdale, a place for her to die. She was heavily sedated. I finally asked the doctor not to give her any more medication.
My wife indicated that she wanted to talk to me, and the next morning she woke up before I did and asked me to come nearer to her. She whispered: “I want to tell you I don’t want to die over here, I want to go home.”
We made a call home and family members got in touch with the Hospice in Belize. They were there to the rescue, with hospital bed, pain medication and everything she needed. She was also assigned a doctor and a caregiver.
Anyone who is caring for the terminally ill should seek out the hospice. It will be a blessing to you as it was for me.
After her death I really didn’t have the energy and the drive to do anything. I just sat around, questions raging in my mind. She was such a kind person, always ready to share, always giving advice to young people who crossed her path.
At night I tossed and turned, sleepless, crying out to God – “Why God, why?”
Then I was introduced to grief share. I was reluctant at first, because I was shy; I didn’t want to expose my feelings. Iwas embarrassed, and everything remained locked up inside.
The facilitator literally took me by the hand, sat me down and started to talk about his feelings when his wife had died. It was all the emotions I was experiencing.
That encouraged me to loosen up and I felt more relaxed. I started to share and that was a good thing.
I was brave enough to give my testimony, and that started my healing process. I still attend the grief session every Monday and it is still helping me on my journey. Three years later, I thank God for seeing me through this difficult period of my life.
This story was originally published on the World Hospice and Palliative Care Day website.