This weekend was Father’s Day and my father’s birthday. My father passed away a few years ago, during my first year of blogging. I started to write a sentimental post about my father tonight, but then I stopped. I was writing it more for YOU than for me. I was faking my sentimentality. I don’t feel it. This is the first year I feel more angry over his death than anything else. It would be nice to talk to him during this transitional part of my life. Why have people alive if they are only going to die?
During my father’s last moments in the hospital — I stood by the bed with my mother, Sophia, my uncle, and the rabbi. The young doctor in his care at the time, overwhelmed with too many patients on a busy afternoon, took the respirator off of my father and we waited for my father’s last breath. Sophia came over and held his hand. But then something happened — the heart monitor kept on beating. And beating. For longer than it should have continued. We all stood there, during these painful moments, stuck in limbo. What was going on? Was he still alive? Or not?
“Does the patient wear a pacemaker?” asked the clueless doctor.
Nice. The medical staff had forgot to turn off my father’s pacemaker, so it kept on beating even after my father’s death, like the Timex watch with the metallic watchband that my father always wore on his right wrist, and which I still keep in the drawer in his memory. If it wasn’t such a gross error by the medical staff, my father’s last prank on the family would have been amusing.
Today, this memory makes me angry, not at the doctor, but at the whole concept of living and dying. Takes a licking, but keeps on ticking. That is a lie for anything other than Timex.