2010 ends and we feel a little sad

Standing at the doorway of Joes room at the Nursing Home we peaked inside and could tell a few of the nurses were taking care of Joe.

Because he now uses what I call adult diapers he has to be changed every so often and we suspected we arrived at a “not so great time!” For Joseph anyway>

I could see through the crack in the door they were tossing his shoes into a corner. My mind was trying to understand why!? Why weren’t they putting Joe back into his wheelchair?

As the nurses came out the door I asked them if he was sick? One mumbled something I couldn’t make out and looked at the other one. She heard my question and quickly picked up where the other left off and said that Joe wanted to lay down because he was tired and his body hurt.

My whole body shook by her words. Joe NEVER would go to bed no matter how bad he was feeling.

Missy and I walked in and he smiled when he saw us. Every few seconds his face expressed his body “was” is quite a lot of pain. He never made a sound. Of course I rattled off my battery of questions and for the first time in months he didn’t seem agitated trying to answer.

He hadn’t eaten in 3 days and he is ready to go home and be with Jesus. “Now what” I asked the Lord inside of myself. As if I heard God himself I knew I needed to find a chair to sit in and prepare my friend to die.

For about 30 min we talked about his life here. His childhood… If there is a type of hell on earth I do believe Joe found it. Now he’s ready to die. He’s done, he’s tired he’s ready to go. We continued on for about 15 more minutes talking about heaven and death.

I could tell from my side of the bed that Missy was crying but because Joe was looking at me he never noticed. Once Missy left the room. Her tears said it all. “Sometimes we hate our job!!”

Before I left I told Joseph that I would be back and as clearly as any man that has had many strokes I read his lips more than his words… “TOMORROW?” I told him yes, tomorrow.

Missy cried as we walked to the car and we said the usual “I hate this job” list and why. Then we laugh and know we wouldn’t be happy doing anything else. Our conversation wasn’t long as we pulled into the hospital parking lot to go inside to see Sonny.

After I turned off the engine I glanced across the street and could see Mike and his nephew Eric waiting in front of a doctors office. Eric has HIV and just had surgery on his skin at the bottom of his back. He has a sore that won’t heal and the flesh is rotting away. Being paralized from the waist down Eric feels no pain.

Not being treated for HIV his sore won’t heal. It’s just a matter of time.

We walked into Sonnys room. The curtains were drawn and no lights were on. They have him sedated. He looked so old and worn. You can’t help but wonder who will die first. Not being family we have no idea what is wrong with Sonny. From what we have learned on the streets watching death and hearing symptoms it sounds like Sonnys liver is shot.

 Time. Sure we all have time. Today when I went back to visit Joe we talked again about death. I brought up the “Time” subject. Every man/woman is appointed a time to die. There is no escape. It is sure, it is a done deal. We will all die. Yet too often we live as though we will live forever. That thought get’s chipped away each and every time we have to go through a time such as this. I find myself anymore making every word count.

I asked Joe if he would like me to sing Amazing Grace. He said he did and I asked him to sing along with Missy and I. He got as far as “How sweet the sound” and his voice fadded. I then picked up his bible and read some things out of Psalms.

His eyes closed as he listened to God’s words being spoken out of my lips. I was hoping he was going to sleep but as soon as I finished he opened them up again.

Tomorrow we will go see our buddy and I will read his bible to him one more time. It’s down to maybe days with Joseph Blain Davidson . I mentioned to him today that when I first met him I didn’t really like him. We both laughed. I said, “However, the more I got to know you the more you taught me and you became my friend.” I thanked him.

So my 2010 is coming to a close on a sad note. We pray the Lord takes Joseph on by the first of the year. Time? Just what are you going to do with your time? This year???? I guess we could all start with kinder words and meaning what we say.

Happy New Year!


4 Responses to “2010 ends and we feel a little sad”

  1. I was going to leave a comment but there really just aren’t any words…..only tears…..I love Joe!

  2. So sorry to hear about Joe, maybe you can use his story to encourage others on the streets to make a change for themselves.

  3. OH how I wish it was that easy Sand. Many of the men visited him after his stroke. We have learned that fear and shame changes no man.Only God can and a Will to follow HIS lead.
    I just keep posting hoping to open eyes to a world unheard of and often misunderstood. Not because people don’t care, but because they never knew where to look.
    We keep trying however!!!! Thanks for the comment.

  4. Jaye, when you see Joe tomorrow, please tell him that I wish I had had the pleasure of meeting him. The first I heard of him, he was missing, then found behind a building after being there for a few days and then being in the hospital, never expecting to live long. He had another 16 months in a warm place with people like you and Missy to look out for him. I’m sure these last 16 months have meant a lot to him, knowing that at the very least, you and his other friends cared. A lot. And yes, being kinder with people is something we should all try to do. We never know when the last thing we say just MIGHT be the last thing we say to someone. Joe will die in peace because of your kindness and love. May God bless you all.

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