By: Muhamad Zulhelmi Bin Akmen
A GOODBYE TO YOU…It was already 6.00 o’clock in the evening. I was waiting for my parents and the other relatives. They had left the house since last night. I and the other siblings stayed at home with our aunts; Mak Usu and Mak Teh. We were waiting for the latest news. The time slowly passed. The sun began to move towards the west and the day becoming darker but we did not get any news from them.
The night was full of silence while we were waiting patiently. Suddenly, the ringing of the phone made my sleepy eyes to wake up. Mak Teh rushed towards the phone and immediately picked it up. My mind kept on guessing that the phone would tell the news we waited for. Seeing my aunt face made me confident about my guess. It was not about hoping for the bad things but that was what we worried of. Mak Teh started to inform us the news. “The condition has become worst,” she said slowly and sadly. Wiping her tears, she continued, “Prepare your things; we will go there tomorrow morning.”
The two hour journey seems very fast as everyone was hoping to arrive immediately to the destination. On our way, no laughs and funny stories were heard. It was not like our usual trips which were full of joy. Everyone tend to silence their selves. After two hours, we arrived there. A large building which was special to cure the patient; the hospital, was standing still in front of us. We then rushed to the ward where the other relatives including my parents were waiting for us.
“How’s dad?” Mak Usu started to ask. I saw my parents and the other relatives standing around the bed that had a person laying in it. Although I was quite far from the bed, I can see clearly the person’s face. Yes, that was my beloved grandfather with a bad condition. His eyes were closed but I can see his breathing. I did not know what cause him to lay there until I heard my mother said to Mak Usu. “Dad had a stroke. The artery in his brain suddenly bursts and becomes blocked. Another medical check-up will be done this evening.” As the first child in the family, my mother calmed Mak Usu who started crying. I was really touched to see Mak Usu’s crying. How can she face all these obstacles while she was still in her SPM examination? Next Monday would be her Additional Mathematics paper. I hoped she would manage to face it although it was only five days left.
That evening was the toughest time for our family. We should make the decision about grandfather’s life. “He need to be operate to put the ventilator support ,” said the doctor; showing that the condition had become worst. It was a tough choice to do as the operation had a high risk based on grandfather’s condition. The stomach need to face drilling process to put the tube of the ventilator support. After a very tough discussion, at last everybody agreed to allow the operation and my mother signed the permission letter.
The night began to appear and the doctor would make the last check-up before the operation. Grandfather needed to be brought to the x-ray room for further medical examination. As the nurse prepared to pull the bed to the x-ray room, grandfather’s condition suddenly become critical. He had a breathing problem. The doctor rushed to him with the help of the lady in the white uniform. “The heart has stoped moving. Prepare defibrillator apparatus,” asked the doctor.
Mission failed. Grandfather left us at 10.15 p.m. The time with full of tears and sadness began to visit our family. That was the saddest day in my life. I really miss my grandfather. He was a kind hearted person although he was not too friendly. When I see a green piece of paper; the last RM5 given by him, the memory with someone who I called ‘atuk’ will always come to my mind. The memory will not be forgotten.
12.47 a.m, 2 Oct 2009
*The story is based on my experience on missing someone I love. My grandfather passed away because of stroke on 21 November 2005 at 10.15 p.m in Hospital Sultan Ahmad Shah, Temerloh, Pahang. Atuk..we love you a lot… Al- fatihah for my late grandfather….