Your son wakes up from a coma that you didn’t expect but hope.
You sit by his side in a hospital where he might not live.
You sit by his side and watch him go through another round of medications and therapies.
You pray for miracles, that he will wake up one more time.
You wait, you wait and you wait.
You have more doctors appointments, more therapy sessions.
And eventually, you have to let go.
So you sit in the car, and you cry.
You cry for your son, and for yourself.
You cry for your life, and for the life of your husband who is in the backseat, trying to comfort you.
I’m crying right now as I type this.
I wrote this on April 14, 2015.
I reread it, and I cried again.
I cried for the future of my son, and for the future of my daughter who is a few years younger.
I cried for the future of my other son, and the future of my daughter who is one year younger.
I cried for the future of my husband who would not want to see this happen to his children.
Your son wakes up from a coma that no one expected you to recover from.
You are dead.
You are really dead.
I don’t think they told you in the hospital.
They would have called it a “resting” state, but that is what you are, really.
You just don’t sleep.
At first, you are able to think and feel, but there is a lot of pain, and you are in a body that is unresponsive.
You are in the “paralyzed” state.
As you are lying there, all you can do is see your wife and son and think about all the wonderful times you had together.
There is a point, you realize, where you can not die, because you have to be there for your family.
It is as simple as that.
You have to be able to help your son grow up.
You have to be there for your wife.
You have to stay.
For that, you can not die.
So, for weeks you lay there, sometimes talking, sometimes sleeping, but always thinking.
And, all of a sudden, it is May 27th, 1996.
I hear a knock knock on the door.
“Is someone here?”
I am not surprised.
The boy needs something to eat.
“I’m coming,” I say and I crawl across the room to the door.
“Is someone here?”
“Who is it, sweetie?”
“You’re not Mommy.”
“Who is it, honey?””
I open the door and I see a doctor in a white coat.
He looks at me and smiles.
“I am not his mommy,” I say.
“I’m his nurse.”” Can I help you?”””” ” “”
“Sorry, Mrs. Keller, but he was a little upset.
I guess he hasn’t seen a stranger in a long time.
But he has to eat, doesn’t he?””
“But I’m not his mommy.”
“There is no Mommy in the world that would let you leave him like this.
Come on, I’ll get you some hot chocolate and you can give him a hug.””
“I’m not his mommy. I’m his nurse.”
I don’t know what he is talking about.
“Okay,” I say.
“I’ll go get him some hot chocolate.”