“I don’t know how to do this…”

You know what my father said to me before he died? And I mean right before he died, it might have been the last thing he said. He goes “I don’t know how to do this” and I said “it’s okay, dad, nobody knows how to do it” and a short time later he was just quiet and I saw that he wasn’t breathing. I closed his eyes with two fingers of my right hand and took the oxygen tube out of his nostrils.

I understand now that I said the right thing, what he needed to hear in that moment. “Nobody knows how” was a reassuring touch, but the words he needed to hear were “it’s okay, dad” they released him to go in peace. As he did a moment later, as gently as you can imagine.

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