We were there…

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Just after midnight on 28 November, I got a call from Mom saying that maybe we could run to the hospital (about 5minutes away without traffic) because Tatay T was showing bad signs. By then, he was already in the ICU for more than a week after he suffered a stroke and aneurysm. We did not know how bad it was but Ry and I drove to the hospital, initially to provide emotional support to Dad who was also on his way. We ran from the parking through the Emergency room (the guard allowed us in!) to the third floor ICU. Tito B was slumped outside on the floor, red-eyed.

That did not look right.

Dad went in and Tito B encouraged us to also go in. He said the staff will allow us given the circumstances. Aunt C was also inside. So I peeked and saw that the nurses and the doctors were pumping Tatay’s chest and I could hear the heart monitor continuously beeping.

We knew right there and then that we were going to be in the hospital longer than we planned.

Tatay’s heart miraculously went beating again. That was his second cardiac arrest for the night, within two hours. The resident doctor said that Tatay was still fighting but the damage caused by the loss of oxygen was still undetermined. We were instructed to wait by the emergency room for updates when Tatay’s surgeon came. The two arrests was reported to him, he said and that he will check on Tatay & inform us.

At around 135am, Tatay was declared brain-dead. The doctor explained it to us so well and in layman’s terms. He said that the eyes were not responding anymore (not dilating), there were no reflex anymore even if they pinch him, he was attached a respirator and that his heart was only beating because of the medicines. And then he said it: that the family should talk and decide whether the doctors will still have to revive him once the heart stops again.

By this time, Nanay and the rest of Dad’s siblings were on their way to the hospital. Nanay was still clueless about the recent events. As for us, we were just quiet hoping that we can change the inevitable.

Seeing someone being revived was not a good sight, especially that it was a loved-one. I felt my tummy doing somersaults and I got really hungry. Not a good feeling. Ry felt the same way so we decided to walk to the nearby 7-eleven and grabbed something to eat while we waited for the rest to arrive.  We saw them passed by the store so we walked back.

That walk was a record-breaker, I think. We also ran back upstairs to see them crying.

Tatay was having another cardiac arrest, the fourth for that morning. He had an attack while we were out.

The ladies were around Tatay’s bed, whispering and talking to him, touching him and trying not to cry. Aunt C could not take it any longer and walked back, gave me her robe. So I went to Tatay’s bed and saw that his feet are already dark and the monitors had that ugly beeping sound, as if saying there’s danger.

The resident doctor beside looked at the wall clock and said “259am”. I looked at the doctor’s eyes, trying to understand (well, I was denying it) what he was trying to say. He just gave me a soft nod, and I just bit my lower lip. Tatay was gone.

I ran to Dad and cried. I went out of the ICU because I did not want the other patients to feel death. Everything that followed was a blur except that I can remember Nanay holding on to me, wailing. Her BP also shot up that we had to let her take her medicine. Plans were hastily made. We went down and Dad instructed his siblings. Ry was left upstairs with Ninang I and Ninong F, and they saw when the male nurses took Tatay, all wrapped up, away.