Chapter 15, My Brother, A Dying Man

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This passage is from Chapter 15, My Brother, A Dying Man.

“During that winter and spring of 1996, my brother’s care and our visits took on a pattern that became part of the routine of our daily lives. It wasn’t that we weren’t concerned by what was happening to him or did not care anymore. When you live with something, anything long enough you start to become used to the hardships and become immune to its devastation. The pain becomes dull and you just accept it as part of the life you are living.”

We make the decision to accept Hospice for my brother.

“Hospice is not a place, it’s a state of mind. It’s the acceptance that the fight is over and there is nothing more to do, except to find peace and comfort for your loved one’s last days on earth. At the end of April, we felt that my brother was no longer showing any signs of a real life and was essentially confined to bed in a semi-comatose condition. The doctors and staff who had been treating my brother arranged for a meeting with us for the specific purpose of giving us their advice about Hospice.

After a few days of reflection and thought, we all agreed that it was time to let my brother go and put him in the hands of the staff from Hospice. They would come to his home with the sole purpose of trying to keep him comfortable and without pain. All other medical treatment and medications would be discontinued, except those necessary to accomplish those two humane purposes.”

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