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Respecting His Wishes

By Ashley
Posted on

I had the conversation with my parent.

My father was a many of great words and always was the center of the room. He easily stated his opinion and made his wishes known. When he was diagnosed with AML, he did not feel defeated or down. Rather he saw this as a hurdle to jump over to get to the next stage in life. Early on our family focus was not on what would happen if the end came name, but rather focus was on giving this a good fight and looking forward to the future and more of what life has to offer. Throughout the two years he was back and forth with treatment and stem cell transplant, conversations were had between my father, myself and my brother. He wanted us to always be taken care of, but most importantly he wanted his wishes to be respected and carried out. My father firmly knew and stated he did not want any extra means to keep him alive. He did not want to be on life support or no functioning if that time ever came. He made this very clear and my brother and I understood and promised to uphold his wishes. Unfortunately the end came fast and unexpected. Both my bother and I were across the country when Dad took a turn for the worse, infection spread quickly and he declined within hours. After speaking with doctors at length and knowing my fathers state would not improve I made the most difficult decision of my life. I told them to take whatever means necessary to keep my father alive until I could be at his bedside, so he would not be alone for his last breaths. I struggled with this decision because I knew he did not want to be on life support, but I did not want him to be alone when he passed. I gave the team the OK to place him on the ventilator and immediately called the airlines and booked the next flight possible. I arrived at my fathers bedside the next day, took some time to hold his hand and talk with him and then with his nurse by my side, we turned off all machines and he passed a few minutes later. I still struggle somewhat with the decision I made, always asking myself if Dad was OK with my decision and hoping he had comfort in knowing I was by his side at this time.

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