My Great Regret: I Didn’t Even Have a Chance to Say, “Goodbye”

faith

Yesterday at 7:15 AM, on a frigid and dreary morning, I woke up to the ringing of my cellphone.

Who the heck is calling me this early? On a Sunday?

The caller ID showed my aunt’s name.

Oh shoot! This can’t be good.

“Hello?”

“Hey Alex, this is your aunt.”

“How are you doing?”

*pause* “Did you know grandpa died?”

“What?”

“Yeah, he passed away 15 minutes ago.”

At this point, I did not know what to do or what to say. I mustered, “At least he was not on chemotherapy. So he did not die in pain.”

My Plan Was Dashed into a Million Pieces

Just 2 weeks ago, I found out that my grandfather had stage 4 pancreatic cancer (which is a really advanced stage). The doctors said he had 3 more months to live. When my father first found out about the cancer, he asked me if grandpa should get chemotherapy. With chemotherapy, he could live for up to a year. I said that it was not a good idea because chemotherapy has lots of side effects. It would just prolong the agony. So my grandfather was hook up to tubes that drip-fed painkillers instead.

During May, I will have two weeks off. So originally, I planned to fly out to Taiwan to be with him during his last moments. But with that phone call, my plan was dashed into a million pieces.

I didn’t even get a chance to say, “goodbye.”

I didn’t cry. I didn’t get angry. I prayed to God and asked Him to take care of my grandpa. Now, I can only hope that he is in a better place.

I blame medical school. Why does it have to take so much of my time? I don’t even want to be a doctor anymore. If I knew that he was going to die so suddenly, I would have gladly taken a leave of absence (possibly for good), and spent it with him.

My only consolation is that I made an effort to speak to him every week over Skype. I wanted him to know that I cared.

When Was the Last Time You Reached Out to Someone You Love?

So I ask you to put down your work and pick up the phone. Call someone you love and say, “Hi.” You may never get the opportunity again. Death comes like a thief in the night. You will never know with it will come for your loved ones … or even you.

Enjoyed the article? Then get e-mail updates. FREE!

Trackbacks

  1. […] I kid …After we knew everything there is to know about Ivan, my sister started talking about grandpa. She asked me, “Did dad ever tell you what grandpa said before he died?” I […]

Speak Your Mind

*