Saturday, February 11, 2012
I got there and was absolutely shocked to see my Paw Paw almost unconscious. He was OK yesterday....how did this happen?? I knew right away that I was not leaving his side. Maw Maw, my mom, Corey, Mona, Debra, Hallie and me were there with Paw Paw the entire night. I held his hand and asked him to take care of Avery Kate for me when he got to Heaven. he squeezed my hand, and I knew that meant that he would. The Hospice nurse came in at around maybe 2:30 AM. She began to tell us about the death process and things we needed to look for. Then she told us how the coroner would come...... I had to leave. I went and sat in Paw Paw's chair in the living room. I just cried and cried. I had just been through this; I had just talked to a coroner, made funeral arrangements, and buried my child. I have to do this again - with Paw Paw? Noooooo!! My mom came and comforted me and I pulled myself together to go back to Paw Paw's room. Maw Maw told me how the night before she heard Paw Paw talking in his sleep. He kept saying, "Hey Boo Boo!" which is what he always said to kids when he saw them. She said she asked him who he was talking to when he woke up, and all he said was, "It wasn't a grown up." I knew he had seen a piece of Heaven and Avery Kate was helping to call him home.
At 5:25 AM we all stood around his bed, holding his hands. He sat up, opened his eyes just a little bit and looked at Hallie and me. We were standing by his feet and were in his view. I just said, "It's OK Paw Paw, we're all here." He took his last breath, and was gone. I thought I would just crumble at a moment like that, but I didn't. I felt stronger. I took Hallie into the kitchen and got her some yogurt. I called Brandon to tell him the news. He was already awake. He said he had been awake for a few minutes just talking to Avery Kate. It was like she was telling him her Paw Paw was there with her. When the man from the funeral home arrived I took it upon myself to take care of writing the obituary. I don't know how I was that strong to be able to do that, but I just felt like I needed to do it and help my family out as much as possible. The hardest part of it all was to put the words, "Preceded in death by great granddaughter Avery Kate Soileau." That is just not the way life is supposed to work. I found the perfect picture of Paw Paw and sent it to the funeral home. He had the happiest smile and looked so healthy! I miss seeing him like that.
Paw Paw's funeral was that Tuesday. Maw Maw asked me to say a few words, I remember seeing a quote on facebook, "Grief. It's the price we pay for love." I just reminded me of Paw Paw. Grief is such a small price to pay for the love of such a wonderful man. I shared this quote with everyone along with a few short memories of Paw Paw. I ended with words of truth, "This is not goodbye, but until we meet again. I love you Paw Paw."