On April 9, three days after the hospital ambulance brought Ate Linda to the Langley Hospice, her body weakens. She couldn’t swallow food. She couldn’t get up in bed. Her vision was blurry. And she murmured; trying to talk.
So upset and wondering why her daughter denied food, Mama, my mother-in-law, threw in expletives directed towards the hospice. The nurses gave no food, no drink instruction to my wife. As Ate Linda’s body functioning recedes, she could get choked. She could only get pain medication through the subcutaneous catheter.
On April 13, Albert, Ate Linda’s hubby, picked up a new brew of Immunotherapy treatment from Germany. He continued hoping for the last-ditch miracle. The one they got from Mexico six months ago didn’t live up to its promise. Albert, as his usual regimen with the Mexico stuff, injected the new brew.
On April 15, according to my sister Malou who works at the nursing home, there appeared hives under Ate Linda’s breast rib cage. Ate Linda soaked wet of perspiration, was restless, and gasping for breath. Her skin covered with blotches.
At the hospice reception room, Mur, as per our FB video conversation, Bebi, (That’s how she addressed her eldest sister) received more pain medication. The night of April 15, she couldn’t sleep. The nurses added two more subcutaneous catheter to pump in more pain reliever. At 2:00 a.m., she fell asleep. Mur, in her quivering voice, and forlorn face, said, Bebi, could go either tonight or tomorrow. Crestfallen, I couldn’t utter a word.
At 4:00 p.m. on April 16, Ate Linda passed away.
Three weeks before Ate Linda’s death; me, Albert, Mur, and Mama trooped with the hospital porter, wheeling Ate Linda at the Radiation Room. The Radiation doctor called Albert to his office.
When he came out, he had a brochure of the Hospice near the Langley Hospital. The brochure implied: Radiation might not work. Hospice is the end of the line. But Ate Linda and Albert, brave as they are, opted for it. They hoped the tumor shrinks before it reaches Ate Linda’s spinal column. They want to buy time for that Immunotherapy treatment from Mexico to kick in. Because the period of its six-month efficacy had been within reach.
Then the Big C, as we called it, won again.