Monday, September 7, 2009

Holding Steve's hand

I have squeezed myself into Steve's tiny bed for most of the afternoon and evening. He has been surrounded by great friends and family, great laughter and love.

He is in a sleep-like state. He can hear us but hasn't been awake since mid-afternoon. He is being given morphine, atropine and Ativan as needed for comfort.

The first assessment today was that Steve would have at most seven days to live.

His symptoms progressed so rapidly that the later assessment gave us 24 to 72 hours.

This is the most heart-breaking (or, as Cooper would say, heart-shattering) experience. We are finding great comfort that he is more comfortable, though. He was really struggling this morning and early afternoon. Though his body is shutting down, his body is no longer restless and agitated.

There is so much to share, but I know that I need to try to close my eyes to sleep -- or at least allow my mind to rest.

I spoke with Dr. M today. She said that Steve has fought harder than any patient she's ever had. She said that for so long he has willed himself to live, overcoming challenges that seemed too big and too daunting.

She told me to hold his hand and, when he is ready, deliver him to the angels.

I've been holding his hand as often as I can ever since.


Dave said...

Heart-shattering, indeed. You are such amazing people. This shouldn't be happening to you, or anyone. But especially to you. I continue to marvel at the grace all of you have kept during these trying times. I love you guys.

Kimberly (Kotwicki) Lesinski said...

May the angels not only take good care of Steve in a better place, but also provide peace and strength to his loved ones who will miss him dearly.