In the middle of 2011, my father had to go into hospital in order to have an operation. I drove him there and expected to be bringing him home in the not too distant future.
At the time, I thought that this was just a routine operation and that he would soon be out of hospital. What also played a part here is that he had been unwell for many years, and so it wasn’t unusual for him to go to the hospital.
However, what we soon found out was that due to this age there was far more risk than there would be if he was younger. Therefore, there was no guarantee that it would be a success.
If I remember rightly, this was something that he had to have done; there wasn’t an alternative. The operation went ahead but it didn’t go to plan, and what made it even worse was that this took place at a hospital that was over an hour away.
He ended up on life support, and many conversations were had with the members of staff in regards to what may or may not happen. My mother, granddad and I went to the hospital in London on a number of occasions.
My sister lived a lot closer, so it was a lot easier for her to visit him. This all changed when he was moved to a hospital that was closer to us, and this meant that it was harder for my sister to visit him.
There Was Hope
When he was moved to a hospital nearby, there was the chance that he would pull through. Finally, we all had some good news, and we believed that it would only be a matter of time before he would be coming home.
This was short-lived, though, and it soon became clear that he wasn’t going to pull through. It was soon decided that the best thing would be to turn off the life support machine and to let him pass on.
Naturally, this was the last thing that we wanted to happen, but we didn’t want him to suffer any longer. He had been through enough, and the time had come for him to finally be at peace.
When he did pass on, I was just coming back from work, and this was a time when it didn’t quite understand what had taken place. I was so overwhelmed with stress at this point that it didn’t sink in.
Out of It
The year before this my mother had a stroke, and this was something that had wiped me out. My mother had changed and my father was no longer here, yet I felt numb and disconnected a lot of the time.
I felt as though I had to keep everything together and to act as though nothing affected me. Shortly after this had taken place, I went to a social club that I had been going to for a number of years, and whilst I was there I spoke to a friend about what had taken place.
We didn’t get the chance to say much to each other, but they sent me a message online shortly afterwards. There were a number of things that they said to me, and one thing they said was “you seem super strong”.
Out of Touch
In reality, I was completely overwhelmed, and it wasn’t long before I could no longer maintain this image. It was only a matter of time before I would fall right down, and I then had no other choice than to face what was taking place within me.
What I came to see is how important it is to have a strong connection with what it taking place within me and to reach out for external support when necessary. As I began to heal the pain that was within me, I gradually began to feel like a whole human being.