Monday, 8 August 2016

Week 1 & 2: I remember...

I remember how quiet it was.
I remember the smell.
I remember the forlorn faces of family and friends of the residents.
I remember a wheelchair bound resident, so skinny, so fragile, not much life left.
I remember the therapy dog who visited, the black lab with a red bandanna.
I remember loving this place and hating it at the same time.
I remember the meetings with the doctors.
I remember how excited dad was when we arrived.
I remember that dad in the hospice wasn't the dad I grew up with.
I remember how angry he was some days.
I remember how sad and completely hopeless he was other days.
I remember taking him for granted.
I remember going up there in the evening and feeding the feral kittens and cats that lived in the drains of the hospital.
I remember trying to catch the kittens, but they were too wily and fast.
I remember the big, white fluffy kitten.
I remember going up to the hospice and spending a hour or two with dad catching cane toads that infested the gardens.
I remember taking them back to dad's house and putting them in the freezer.
I remember the young fella of 17 who passed away a couple of weeks after arriving.
I remember dad breaking the record for longest living resident in the hospice - he lasted 6 months.
I remember the day Dad told us that his mate had sold his motorbike for him.
I remember as Dad counted out $1000 to give to myself and my sister.
I remember the look on his face as he did it and handed the money to us - satisfaction and pride.
I remember scrounging around for coins to cover the cost of smokes for him, because even though he was dying of cancer he didn't really see any point to giving up.
I remember dad getting his words mixed up.
I remember dad getting his physical actions mixed up.
I remember the look my dad gave us whenever we were leaving.
I remember how swollen he was from the medication.
I remember the terrible haircut he had asked the travelling hairdresser to give him.
I remember his oddly shaped head as his brain tumour got bigger.
I remember the last phone call I had with him,
I remember some of the last things he said to me,
I remember him asking me for permission to let go.
I remember dreaming of his funeral.
I remember my sister calling me, telling me he'd gone.

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