Further to my last week’s blog on ‘getting ready for the final scene’, my lovely 94 year old client died this past Saturday. I really can’t say it was a peaceful death as it seemed to be a very long and difficult journey. She could no longer eat or drink and as she was only 90 pounds when she entered the hospital, she seemed to have shrunk considerably. She could no longer speak but I am sure she was still able to hear me. While her eyes were open, they did not see; yet the raise of her eyebrows and wrinkle of her forehead led me to believe she was able to acknowledge my words and sentiments. She died the next day with her caregiver beside her. She was one of the lucky ones. Her 99 year old sister was her only living relative and had said her goodbyes as well. I say she was one of the lucky ones as she had lived very well and at home until age 94, still cognitively sharp and relatively healthy. She and her sister lived together and they had 24 hour/ full time caregivers who encouraged them and supported them living as fully as possible.
Doris’ last words to me a few days before, were of thanks and gratitude for having arranged for trust services through her bank and for the wonderful attention she received from Jina, her trust officer. It was Jina who hired Elder Caring, several years ago, after Doris had fallen and broken her hip. I say she was one of the lucky ones as she was also able to pay for her care and able to direct it, right until the end. As I said my final goodbyes to her, I told her that I was one of the lucky ones, as it had been my honour and privilege knowing her and being considered part of her family.