We are a terrific people. Sometimes, don’t you wonder what a person’s history is? Any person? What’s their life’s story? What they had been through, and what did they do in this world? Did they make it better, or even better than better? We could probably go deep on this, but sometimes when you let your mind go, it can GO! I don’t have a word to use that can describe a situation that I’ve been through this past week; this is positive, by the way. As I’ve mentioned before, I do a lot of volunteer work at RONALD REAGAN HOSPITAL at UCLA. I talk to a lot of patients regarding their situations, usually head trauma’s, since I’ve been in that batter’s box myself three times, now. When I speak to them, they respond back to me, that’s conversation. What happens when they don’t respond; as in NO RESPONSE: I still had that conversation.
I got a call from the hospital, to see if I was interested in sitting in a room with a patient. This was a patient with no family, and apparently, not to many friends here in Los Angeles. This man, we’ll call him “Otto”, was 90 years old, and was in a non- responsive state. The hospital is now putting a program together, with regards to no one dies alone. If you knew someone whose days are limited, possibly two or maybe three, or only one; wouldn’t you like some one to be there, to give a little compassion, or a little comfort in those last hours? If you really think about that, doesn’t it seem to be our human way? I think so, so I said “Yes”, I’ll sit with him. To be honest with you, I really didn’t know how it would work with me, or how it would work, PERIOD! It just seemed right.
It just seemed normal. It humbled me, to realize that we should never, ever, take our lives for granted. This man was 90, I get that, and I hope that he had a beautiful, wonderful life. I was wondering so much about his background, his ups and downs, what made him happy, and sad. His eyes were open, his breathing short. He hadn’t moved, but he looked so comfortable. I wanted SO much to talk to him, to pick his brain on his 90 years. No response. I started talking; for two hours I talked, (I think that I used every word that I know for 2 hours!). I started reading scriptures to him, then I had to sit down after awhile, legs were getting tired. I reached up and stroked his cheeks, as if we were old pals. After awhile, I did feel like I knew him; maybe it was MY mind getting turned around, I don’t know, but it was comfortable for me, much more than I thought it would be. After sitting there with him, I know now, that the mind still works, even in that condition; I say that, because I could FEEL life! I also know that even in that condition, he is living until his last second on this earth. There’s why I said, previously, to live every minute like it’s your last, because one day, or one moment, it will be.
I moved out here, to Los Angeles, in 1981. I remember that so clearly, literally like it was yesterday. Thirty-three years ago, that was yesterday. Time. It goes fast; live the moment, because if you don’t even notice it, the time, what else did we miss? That thirty-three years went so fast, “Otto”. was only 57 years old. when I came out here. I asked him what he doing back then; I had this conversation going on, and it was only a monologue! I envied him, to be 90 years old, and still having a breath or two; every second we breath, and he’s done it, good for him.
This is a little different from all of my other blogs, but this occasion is also different. It really made me appreciate my life, and everything in it; surgeries to trophies, fitness to sickness, it’s all worth it. This article is because this man, at this time, has no family here, that’s why I was with him. Every one, all of us, has friends, in our own time; so tell them how you feel about them, pour out your heart to them, so there’s no “I should have told them…”. I don’t think that we all want to have someone sitting in our room, because we haven’t got anyone in our lives, in our last breaths. We all have a lot to say, to a lot of people, so say it; who feels better, the say person, or the hear person? It doesn’t matter, it’s just this wonderful thing called life. Enjoy it, relish it, and really say “Thank You”, for all those breaths you’ve taken.
Thanks “Otto”, for this wonderful Life’s Chat; I learned a lot from you, and your journey.