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…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…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!