Sunday, December 14, 2014

Farewell, Elaine....

I found out a patient of mine passed away 3 days ago.
I had been seeing her for the last 5 years- and it's something I've really come to enjoy in my field- the longitudinal care we provide and so we really get to know some patients, and even get attached to some of them (This would be in contrast with the role of a hospitalist, or ER doc, who provides on-demand care).
Anyway, she has type 2 diabetes, but was a dear little old lady, with dementia. I also see her son and cousin as their endocrinologist. And at the visit with her cousin, he shared the sad news. She wasn't feeling well that day and wanted to rest. But she never woke up.
She was 89.
She finally got what she wanted. She lost her husband a long time ago. And despite the dementia, remembers him well. And everytime I see her, she would grumpily say that "old people have no business being alive for so long. Why wouldn't He just take me now?".
And I would tell her "Elaine, it's just not your time..."
She lived alone in a trailer home before her son made the difficult but necessary decision to put her in a nursing home 10 months ago; she was the lady Kris and I brought a birthday cake to last year.
I shall miss her, seeing her spunk, her dry sense of humor, and hearing her stories (stories she had told me a dozen times before but doesn't remember).
But at least she's finally at peace, and she'll celebrate Christmas with her husband, finally.
Farewell, my dear... I hope I took good care of you while you were here.


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