I'm afraid I have to say goodbye to my love today.
No, Milt is not dead yet, but he may as well be
To everyone who knows him, and especially to me.
He is being fed through a tube and he can no longer speak
He is still on dialysis, and his heart is very weak. He has
suffered from pneumonia and has had several strokes.
When Milt went into ICU at the hospital in North Carolina,
he gave me a password (his grandson's name) so that I could
speak with his nurses and with him. When he went into ICU
for the second time, I was told that his daughter (who has
power of attorney) had changed the password. I asked the nurse,
and then the supervisor, if he was still alive and they wouldn't
answer me. I tried to call his daughter, but she wouldn't pick up
her phone. Then I called Milt's son, who told me that the only
person I could call to ask about Milt's condition when he was in
ICU was Milt's son-in-law Bill. All I could do was send Milt cards
Milt was then transferred to CCU (cardiac care). Today, Bill
told me not to call anymore because there's nothing new to say.
He said Milt is awake for only a few seconds and then falls
asleep again. Yet three nurses (Mary, Elizabeth and Emily),
told me that Milt took my photo from one of them and kissed it.
The nurses also hung my cards and photos on the wall near his bed.
When I told Bill that Milt had kissed my photo, he replied that Milt
"didn't know what he was doing" and that Milt's daughter planned to
send him to a nursing home in a few days. All I know is that he
went to North Carolina a couple of months ago although he didn't
want to go. However, his daughter told him he would "get better"
from the chelation treatments which were administered to him in
her office under her supervision. After two weeks of chelation
treatments his kidneys failed and dialysis treatments were
required in order to keep him alive.
When I visited Milt about a month after he went to North Carolina, he
told me that I was "saving his life." Guess I didn't do a very good job
-- however, how could I accomplish the impossible? All I can do now is
call the nurse and tell her to give him my love.
I can't say all that I want to say, and it's hard to keep these
feelings of resentment buried away -- yet, I must. I will cry, but
I will be strong. Thank God for my beautiful family and friends,
and thank you my precious family of poets for all your prayers.
January 5, 2011