In my post, “Miracles Happen”, I mentioned the fact that God has the final say. It’s true of life and death. Just three days after writing that post our family would experience this reality firsthand.
On Sunday my Mom convinced Popaw to go with her and Ned to Hickory on Monday to visit his two sisters. She reasoned with him by telling him that out of the three siblings he was much healthier and steady on his feet than his two younger sisters. He gave in and agreed to go.
Monday morning they picked him up from The Bridge. He was complaining with heartburn, which is not unusual for him. It’s actually, as far back as I can remember, always a normal occurrence. As the day drug on, so did his heartburn. Mom gave him some Tums. Then after eating a light lunch Judy, his niece gave him Pepcid because he said it had worsened.
By the time Mom returned from taking Aunt Bobbie back to her room. Popaw was pale, clammy and could not walk. Fairly certain he was having a heart attack, she got the address of the assisted living facility and called 911.
Promptly, EMS arrived and began working with him. Before putting him in the ambulance his pulse reading was 30.
Once they got him the hospital they had to use the AED to shock his heart. According to the nurse who talked to Mom after, Popaw was not happy they used them.
Later when Mom talked with the doctor. He told her that a Popaw had suffered a “big” heart attack. They were able to use angioplasty; but stints would not stay in because his arteries are so hard.
He was kept in ICU overnight and moved to a regular room the next day. Released on Thursday and brought back here to Life Care.
The doctor was petty clear that Popaw’s fix is only temporary. At some point his arteries will close back up and blood will not pass through, which will inevitably lead to death. The next time they won’t use paddles. He has a DNR. He actually had his DNR updated a week prior to his heart attack, only the hospital staff in Hickory had no idea.
You see, the thing about my Popaw is that he’s ready to go. He’s been ready to go for a very long time.
In fact, just three days prior to his heart attack, Sammy and I were visiting. (Picture above) He and I were talking about the fact that MaMaw had been gone for 7 years. He said, “Honey, I miss her more and more every day. In fact my heart longs more and more to see her and meet Jesus”.
Now, I’m not living under any false pretense that when my Popaw dies it’s going to be easy. It won’t. He’s been my constant, as constant as the stars in the sky or the sun that brightens the day or the moon that lights up the night sky. My whole entire life he has been a source of great kindness, gentleness, humbleness, patience, meekness…. and a constant source of joy. There is no one on earth that will ever fill the shoes he leaves behind. Not one. But I am thankful. Thankful for the time I’ve had and oh, so thankful for the time still left here.
We are not promised tomorrow. God saw fit to give us a little more time. Maybe it’s to prepare our hearts. Maybe Popaw still has a life to touch. Maybe Jesus just hasn’t finished his place because He’s pretty clear that when our place is prepared, He will come for us. Whatever the reason, God will have the final say.
You saw me before I was born. Every day of my life was recorded in your book. Every moment was laid out before a single day had passed. Psalm 139;16NLT