It’s true that one must never judge anyone on a phase that someone goes through because you never know the battle within unless you experience it yourself.
THE GRIEVING PROCESS.
DENIAL. It started when I received an SMS from my sister “Ate mau na si papa” (Our dad has passed away”) I was in a clinic then with my daughter, I know for a fact that my sister, or anyone wouldn’t make such a joke on death and dying. I didn’t know whether or not bring my kid at the hospital, or leave her someplace because she’s still too young to deal with wherever I will find my dad- dead. All along, those minutes that passed is the idea that my dad is gone, my Papa is really gone, dead, lifeless… then I arrived at the hospital.
ANGER. The moment I stepped into the hospital, I went at the ER to confirm and see for myself my Papa. Asked the nurse, and the news was personally broke to me by the nurse on duty. “Wala na po sya, Dead-on-Arrival. Cardiac arrest. Tig emergency intubation mi na po pero matagas na” (We tried to revive but it was already stiff- No use to intubate) The nurse was even explaining to me that they had not asked for the consent to do emergency CPR and intubation since the one who accompany my Papa was speechless as to who she is. I was angry, to the fact that why would a dead on arrival scene ever took place when in fact a heart disease or a stroke in evolution can be prevented if only prior signs and symptoms are given ample attention to. So, I asked, where’s my dad, nurse answered “MORGUE”
At the morgue, I was angry. So angry why it was a DOA. Why… a DOA. I was even angry to myself why as a daughter, I hadn’t asked my Papa how he is feeling, how’s his life at the moment, or how I have not practiced my profession as a nurse, and not even apply my knowledge and skills to my own family… to my very dad. I was angry to whoever he was with, and wondered why… asked so many why’s in my mind but the only reality that was in front of me was my father lying there at the Bethany, lifeless…
BARGAINING. The fact that he is dead, I have talked to him in my mind. “Pa why didn’t we ever talked before you leave, why did you ever not tried to get back home.”
While at the wake, I did everything I can to make things as smooth as possible, the online viewing at the chapel, the foods, thanking guests for joining us in our grief.
All I asked from my dad is to preserve whatever good memories he has left us, to his family, to his colleagues, former classmate and friends. I wanted him to help us not to have any more issues now that he is gone. I have given him forgiveness, and peace, that he wanted all his life, and even now that he’s gone.
ACCEPTANCE. A week after his death, I have came across to his iPhone, listened to the last videos he viewed. Saw the last calls he made, messages he sent. At this point, I have came to accept that he’s gone, and that whatever regret I have with him, those things he did not do, and those I did not do as a child was acknowledged and accepted. One reality strikes me is that he’s gone forever physically. But I know he has made a HOMECOMING as the priest during his Funeral mass has discussed in his Homily. I have came to accept that everyone will die, including myself, and that maybe someday I will see him and catch up to whatever those we should have talked when he was still alive. That he is in a better place now with our Lord.
I came to accept my dad, and all his flaws. I have came to accept that everyone makes mistakes and it was all his decision, that it was not my fault, and or no one else’s fault if he has lacked the medical attention and follow-up check-ups and maintenance medications. That it was his time.
I have came to accept that he has served his life well, to his family, raising us to be good persons, giving us decent life, and gave us college education that equipped us better to our own lives- without him.
I have came to accept that he has prepared his very own death very well. That he even prepared us, his family, of his passing. That he didn’t want any more complications to the life he put made himself into.
In my Papa’s Eulogy, I shared to the people present in St. Peter Chapels that he served God very well by being a person who does good to others. That he served his country as the best Police Investigator he could become. And his FAMILY, whom he gave a decent life.
The song that Papa included in his YouTube Fave list was
“I’ve been to Paradise but Never been to Me” https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zq7odh8yM8Y by: Charlene. The lyrics that strikes me the most are these:
“But I wish someone had a talked to me like I wanna talk to you”
“But I ran out of places and friendly faces because I had to be free”
“I can see so much of me still living in your eyes
Won’t you share a part of a weary heart that has lived a million lies”
“But I, I took the sweet life and never knew I’d be bitter from the sweet
I spent my life exploring the subtle whoring that cost too much to be free…
I’ve been to paradise, never been to me…
I love you Papa, I was told you love us too….