TuesdayJuly 2, 2011
All my folks were special. They were all so unique and they had so much to offer. I loved hearing about what their day to day lives were like 50 years ago when they were my age. My biggest and most worthy education came from my older male black patients. They would tell me what it was like to be in a war as a black soldier. Let me tell you, they sure didn’t teach us that in school. That still gives me shivers thinking about it.
I really loved my old folks. They were wonderful.
I had one guy, H. He was cool, 92 years old and not a thing wrong with him. No HPT, nothing. Just old. One day (I believe it was on a Friday) he called for me. He NEVER called for anyone. He just wanted to be left alone. When I heard H wanted to talk to me I knew it was important and I went to see him right away. He wanted to tell me he would become ill the following Tuesday, go to the hospital and die that day.
Nobody ever did that before, that was a first for me (at the time). I told him that wasn’t so! He was fine and he’d be with us forever and to stop talking like that. He insisted I listen to him. Just to avoid getting him upset I sat and listened and agreed to follow his wishes.
I really didn’t think much more of it. Well, not until Tuesday. That morning his roomate came to get me telling me H had fallen. Suddenly it hit me what H had told me and I went running for his room. Sure enough, H was on the floor and he was dead. He never even tried to break his fall. He likely had a stroke and died before he ever hit the ground. He was on the money with the date of his death but the only difference is that he didn’t go to the hospital first. I learned never to question those statements again. If an older person says they are going to die, they likely are.
How do they know that? Does someone tell them? How do they know? Weird.