Category Archives: On Death & Dying

Dealing with Death, Feelings Associated with Death

Her Final, Mile…

It’d been, real hard, this, final mile, of hers, she’d, dragged on, for what seemed, like, an eternity, she was ill, starting at the beginning of her early eighties, or was it, late seventies, nobody can, really, recall now…

She’d been, in and out, of the hospital, during this, final mile of hers, and yet, something inside of her, refused, to let go of life, and so, she’d, held on, strong, with that final breath inside of her, refusing, to let go.

what it’d, looked, like查看來源圖片with, no end in sight…photo from online

It got to the point that the attending doctors, the primary physicians can, no longer, do anything for her, and stopped, all treatment options, but, she’s, still, holding on too tight, to her, dear life, and, nobody knows for sure, why!

Her final mile, it’d been, difficult, and that would still be, an understatement, for during her final days, she’d, struggled, too hard, to hold on to that, final, dying breath of hers, when all the vital signs, had, slowly come, to a, halt.

Her final mile, she shouldn’t have been, shocked back to life that first time, they should’ve, just, let her die, but her families, couldn’t, bear, to see her go, and so, she dragged on, for the, final mile, of her, life…………

 

 

 

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Filed under Life, On Death & Dying, Properties of Life, Right to Die, the Finality of Life, The Right to Choose How One Will Die

The Heart Behind Nailing in the Coffin, on Filial Relations

Out of respect, for the family who’d raised her, a final rite of passage here, translated…

One afternoon, the phone rang at my house, on the other end, came the voice of a woman, “Hello, youngest uncle!  Long time no see………” Wow, could it be, again?  The woman seemed to have felt my concerns, she’d immediately added, “Youngest uncle, I’m not a scammer, I’m………”, and the voice, it had, sounded, a whole lot like my niece all right.  “My mother’s in critical condition, since she fell ill, she’d been telling me, that after she passes, to ask you to help her ‘nail her coffin down.’”.

Then the past all came, rushing back to me, my eldest sister was adopted, I don’t have that many memories of her, by the time I was born, she was already, married away, or, maybe, I should say, she’d, eloped.  Back then, she wasn’t getting along with my eldest brother of twenty years senior, she’d fallen in love with a man in the factory she worked in, in those times, the neighbors, our relatives, families, and friend all chatted on and on, my father felt that he’d, lost face, and, claimed that she wasn’t, related to him anymore; and even so, as my eldest sister’s eldest daughter who was at the same age that I am, she’d taken her home to see our parents, and my parents no longer, felt angered anymore.  It’s just, that my eldest sister didn’t marry well, her husband didn’t take care of her family, and, she’d, insisted on not receiving any assistance from our parents, used her cooking skills, started a market food stand, raised her five young up.

The following day, I’d, immediately gone to the hospital to visit my eldest sister, being ill, she’d talked with happiness, on the parents who’d, raised her up, and, regretted how she didn’t, treat them with kindness, and recalled everything she experienced back at our home, in the end, she’d, asked me, to seal her coffin up with a nail symbolically, and naturally, I’d agreed to it.

A week later, my eldest sister passed on, and, in the funeral, my niece started crying, told me, “As you’d gone to see mom that day at the hospital, she was so happy, kept chiming on about how you’d agreed, to help seal up her coffin, how she finally, had a true family of origin…………”

“Sealing the coffins with nails” was originally something that was done for unwed women who’d died, having the male siblings of her own family to check to see if they’d been, abused to death, if there wasn’t sign of foul play, then, the male siblings would then, nail in the nails around the coffin, and this became a sort of a ritual out of courtesy of the deceased woman’s respect toward her own family of origin.  At this very moment, I’d, finally, come to understanding of why my eldest sister requested that I be the one, who’d, helped her complete, this most important ritual of her life that came after her death, this was, her deep love, her remembrances, of our, parents.

And so, this, is a ritual of the family, and the woman was adopted, and, she’d, married badly, and, despite how she’d, gone against her own adoptive parents’ wishes, they’d still, loved her wholeheartedly, and, accepted her back into the family, and, the niece asked the uncle to nail her own mother’s coffin, not just as a way of fulfilling her own mother’s, final wishes, but it was, a sign of respect the woman had for her own family which she was, raised in.

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Filed under Life, On Death & Dying, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, the Finality of Life

Lost in Thought, a Poem

On trying and finally accepting, the inevitable: DEATH, translated…

On the Day I Dreamt of My Mother

I’d Not Checked the Albums on My Phone to See

If the Buddha Had His Eyes Lowered

If the Background was the Mountains or the Cliffside

Don’t Lie to Me, Just, Come All Out

The Lenses, Too Worldly

Can’t Switch to that Boundary

The Mothers of Others Kept Aging

Becoming Those, Old Yams, Old Taros with the Bearded Roots

Walking Slower, No Need to Rush

Take Your Children & Grandchildren, Dragging Yourself Along that Stroller

In the Early Evenings, the Swallows Returned Back to Springtime

That Stumbling Shadow with the Back Turned Had Always Been Mistaken by Me

That It Shall Be, Returned, to that Familiar Address

The Storyline Shattered, and Crumbled Multiple Times

Slowly I Knew to Hide, so I Can Accompany This One Dream

No Need to Argue, No Need to Tell the News

God Shall Come by, the Eggshell Broken

It’s Best that You’re, Taken Hostage

And Get Hatched and Become Anything Else

What’s Meant to Come in Eventuality, the Crowds Appeared in Black-and-White, Silent in the Freeze Frames

There’s Too Much Logic Underneath the Sun

Circling Oneself, Enveloping Oneself

Using a Lock, to Escape

I am, Out

Walked in a Straight Line with My Own Mother

Don’t Clench My Hands Too Tight, Don’t Rest

And, Don’t Blink

So this is, a man’s, coping with his own mother’s, death, because, of how his mother is, almost dead, and he is finally, allowing the fact of what’s, inevitable, sink into his mind…coping with this, loss that simply can’t be, avoided.

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Filed under Awareness, Because of Love, On Death & Dying, Philosophies of Life, Poetry, Properties of Life, the Finality of Life

He Said He Was, Tired, the Dramas of Life

On how a father couldn’t let go, because of how much there is, keeping him in the world, even though his body is, slowly, quitting on him, translated…

The morning sun shone brightly, the green forests of Nantou made oxygen an abundance, we took in the deep inhales, and exhales.  He walked ahead of me, the destination: a nearby elementary school, for a workout, the step counter showed 2,130 steps.  He’d made a pact, that he was, going for 10,000 steps a day.  He’d executed this plan of his alone for months already, and, I can only manage to find the time, on the weekends when I didn’t have to, work.  I’m really, looking forward to the good particles from the sun, to making his body healthier, the serotonin, the dopamine, the adrenaline…………

“If I die, you need to, look after yourself well,” he’d stated to me.  “What happens to the child?  What happens to dad?  No, this is not the discussion I want to have right now…………” this was the conversation that began, many, many, many years ago, with a period of time of him in the hospital, with the medical treatments, to bring his life back to normal, we’d, moved to the mountains in Nantou, hoping, that the clean air can, keep him healthier.  Taking his elderly a hundred-year-old father here to stay was his wish, Nantou’s countryside is a great place, with the conveniences of hospitals, with the Veteran’s Hospitals, the Christian Hospitals, etc., etc., etc.  Although he’d needed the sleep aids to go to bed at night, and yet, being able to have these verbal exchanges with him, to fight over the television for the shows we wanted to see, we had, our, share of, a simpler life together.

Although, having to head back to the hospitals regularly annoyed him, he’d still, followed the doctors’ orders, took his meds regularly, kept a regular schedule of life, but don’t know why, or when it’d, started happening again, he’d, felt ill again.  His heartrate got past 120 per minute, he’d started, losing weight quickly, and needed to return back to the enclosures of the hospital wards.  I’d asked him where he’d hurt?  With his hand of his chest, he’d told me, it wasn’t, hurt, it was, painful for him.

In the lobby of the hospital, he’d, pulled on my hand, looked me into the eyes, said to me, “Honey, I’m tired now, let me go, let go of my hands, it’s really, painful for me to stay, I can’t, take it anymore…………”, I’d, let go of his hand, wrapped my arms around his waist, put my head, on his chest.  How I wish I could, get inside his heart, to find out where he was, hurting, why was it, that his most beloved father, his siblings, and his, dearest daughter, and his wife, couldn’t, make him, stay?

Sometimes, the body’s just, been tried too hard, and it wants, to quit, but the only reason why the individual is still alive, is because s/he didn’t want to, leave her/his families who loved her/him behind, like this is the case here.

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Filed under Family Matters, Letting Go, Life, On Death & Dying, Properties of Life, the Finality of Life

Meeting My Daughter Who Ran Away, a Poem

On accepting death, finally, translated…

She is My Daughter

But She, Ran Away

Perhaps, it’s the Wind, the Night Skies

The Stars, the Clouds, the Sunsets Tempting Her on

The River Flowed, the Grasses Grew

I Don’t Know How to, Call Her Back

She was My Daughter of the Past

Born, into the Night, Forgotten, by Sunrise

She was, Never, Returned to My Side

Only Left a Letter, at that High Tower of the Ancient Times

Under the Mulberry Tree, with One Solitary Leaf Fallen Beneath it

Before, the Hooves of, a Fatigued, Steed

Maybe Time had, Never, Left

But, I’d Not Seen Her at Chang-An, Nor Taipei

The Galaxies on the Posters, in the, Nighttime Skies

My Dreams, Premeditated, an Everlasting Dance

My Daughter Who’d, Left, Did She, Venture from the Life Before, to the Next Life Already

What is She Doing Now

As the Rain Falls, the Pond Pretending to be Asleep

That White-Feathered Bird with Its Wings, Damp, Flew Across the Skies

Those Pieces of Driftwood Stood, on the Distant Mountains

Walking Down the, Unknown Paths, Did She, Hear My Calls Out to Her

From Afar

And so, this, is on death, the narrator had lost his child, and, perhaps, she’d died, just a few days after birth, but, no matter how brief the time the man had with her, he’d, already, loved her very much, and, this poem, is his process of, letting her go.

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Filed under Cost of Living, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Loss, On Death & Dying, Parenting/Parenthood, Philosophies of Life, Properties of Life, the Finality of Life

The Season of the Frost

As death, slowly, takes over, the living, translated…

The afternoon sun came in, from the southwest side, the light that weren’t, blocked out, by the house next door, slanted down, lazily, imprinted itself, onto the patio, reflecting the rhombus pattern of the screen door, her black cat, Charcoal lay, on that patch of sun that’s, on the ground, it seemed, that he was, unwilling, to leave that spot.

As she stared, at this frame, there came, the eyes of that elderly woman, the elderly face was, so thin, with the deepening of the wrinkles on her face, her skin, dark in complexion, very thin in its, layer, with one eye, slanted, and the eye that stared at people, it’d, looked, extremely, delicate, with the corner lifted upward.  Maybe, back when the elderly was a younger woman, she was, beautiful, it’s just, that the year drifted too far away from her now, and, she’s not related to her, and so, she can, only, make her own guesses on her.

what that, looked, like…查看來源圖片photo found online

She’s, a caretaker, taking the shifts from the night previous.  The elderly woman is close to eighty years of age, not even forty kilograms in weight, quite weak in physique, and even so, she’d still, insisted on, taking herself to the bathrooms.  She’d, taken into considerations her stature, and wanted to allow the elderly to have what’s left of her own, dignity, she’d, allowed the elderly, to lean on her, and took her to the bathroom, and, as the night got deeper, she’d, made the trips, many more times.  The elderly always, sat on the toilet a long time, and, as she helped her back into bed, she could hear the elderly pant like a dog.  As the nurse saw, she’d, grilled her, to NOT help her go to the bathrooms again, that she could just, let the elderly go in her diapers.  Later she’d, taken care of the diapers’ worth of brownish, sticky material.  As the families learned of this, they’d told, that in these recent ten days, the woman lacked an appetite, and didn’t eat anything when they took her home, only had the liquid nutritional drinks, how can she expel so much waste.  As she heard, her heart went colder, and reminded the families in a round and about way, that they need to be, prepared.  What she couldn’t tell them was, please, take your mother home with you, so the high tech devices, don’t drag her life out for longer than it should’ve, lasted.

As the elderly woman was lying there, she’d, used her delicate eyes, asked, “Miss, can you please give me some medications, that I can take, and just, die.”  Then, “I’m going to find my dad now.” And from time to time, she’d, hung her head down low, held tight to her tiny achy frame, mumbled on, “I’m going to die”.

As the day broke, the families came by, the elderly started grilling them, “are you, leaving me here, to die?”, her children were about fifty or sixty years of age, looked honest enough, but without a clue, and, as they’d heard their mother’s questions, they’d, seemed, helpless, rebutted, “We sent you here to get better, how can we leave you here, to die?”  the nurse told the families to go outside, she’d watched the loved ones, nodded away like bobbleheads, they started, writing something down on a sheet of paper that the nurses handed them.

this, is what the end, might, look like…查看來源圖片photo from online

At around noon, the medical staff, suddenly, gathered around in the room.  The families, as well as she, were, ushered outside.  In a panic, the elderly had, multiple tubes going in and out of her body: the trachea, the feeding tubes through the nose, connected to the stomach, the catheter, the drips, with some tranquilizer, the elderly lost consciousness, with the oxygen mask over her face, the assortments of drips on the poles, then, the entire bed, got wheeled off, into the I.C.U.

She received a day’s worth of nurse’s pays, dragged out her luggage, walked, on the golden sun rays of the season of the frost, as the golden sunshine was about, to get off the clock.

As she arrived home, there were the cats, and no humans around, her kids had all grown up and left home, her husband no longer alive.  She’d put a kettle on, gone to pick the two sticks of chamomiles out in her yard, on lemon grass, three leaves of mint, made it, into a cup of, lightly, sweetened, light green solution.  As she’d, found her calm again, she’d recalled, a patient she couldn’t, let go of as she was being trained as a caretaker, it was, also, an elderly of eighty or ninety years of age, she’d helped turned him over in the bed, and, as she’d touched his body, she’d found, that the man was, so stiffened up, that he’d, looked like a curled up shrimp, most of the patients she worked for, as she’d helped them flip over, would sigh, and yelp, but this elderly man, is a dead body, with just, one breath left inside of him, like a cookie, she’d turned him, left, and then, right, no response, there’s, no changes in the lines on his body, or posture, he’d, stuck on the hospital bed, and it’s, actually, abandonment, in the name, of terminal care, how long had it been, since someone, helped moved his muscles?  Otherwise, how could he be, so stiff?  And yet, the people around him, they’re sliding on their cell phones, eating their meals, and just, busying themselves, around, and about.

The sun had, retracted, to a corner on the lanai now, the rhombus shaped pattern now, gone, Charcoal hopped, into her lap.  She’d, patted that body of color, Charcoal started, purring at her.  The elderly with the corners of the eyes lifting upward, your wings of youth had already been, put up, stored away, inside, that long hallway of time, without all those, tubes to keep you alive, hmmmmmmmmm, it’s, hard to, say.————She took a small sip of the light scent, then asked Charcoal who’s in her lap, “the season of the frosts has arrived, do you know that?  And the days, go fast one by one, vanished, do you know, what a, good spot you were lying in awhile ago!”

And so, for this woman, in her line of work, she’d, seen it all, because she took care of the terminal patients, who are, on the verge of dying, and in taking care of these elderly, she’d, seen everything, from how the bodies are, no longer, capable of sustaining life on their own, of how the only thing that’s, keeping these bodies alive, are the machines, and tubes in the arms, connecting to the machines, and how the families refused, to let go of their elderly parents, and just, keep on, making them suffer even longer!

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Filed under "Professional" Opinions, Awareness, Cost of Living, Expectations, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Observations, Old Age, On Death & Dying, Philosophies of Life, Right to Die, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Things Left Behind

Passing Through, on a Bamboo Raft, a Poem

On burying one’s own, offspring, translated…

A Bamboo Raft, Like a Red Lotus Passed Through

Vanished, into the Fog

“Affinities of Children, Thin Like the Foams on the Waterfront”

So True These Words

Watching the Sunset Light Withering in the West

Time Has No Place Here

Memories Can’t Hide

The Awareness, Electric Shocked

Who isn’t, Like that Small Raft

Drifting in-Between Life & Death

Listening to the Heaviness of the Repentance of Love & Lust

With the Broken Bridges, Severed Off Streams, the Dying Smokes

And so, this, is finally, coming to one’s senses about the finality of life, because you’d lost the ones you loved when they were too young, and you are, still living, you’d, needed to, cope with losing the ones you cared for, loved, your, own young…

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Filed under Awareness, Because of Love, Coping Mechanisms, Cost of Living, Despair, Lessons, Letting Go, Life, Loss, On Death & Dying, Story-Telling, the Finality of Life, Translated Work, Values