My father died fourteen years ago on March 31, after suffering a massive stroke, which I believe was a result of Alzheimer’s.
He was diagnosed with dementia when my husband and I decided to move him from his Wisconsin home of forty-five years into our California home.
He was later diagnosed with Alzheimer’s and managed to live for five mostly happy years until a cerebral infarction (fancy name for an ischemic stroke) caused him to lapse into a coma.
Fortunately, he was gone within thirty minutes.
Unfortunately, I wasn’t nearby.
Sometimes, our loved ones choose when to go.
My mother also chose to go alone, twenty-two years earlier, on April 1.
My father called to tell me he had just visited her and when he came home, the nurse called to say when she went into her room to check on her, she had gone. I thought he was kidding, with it being April Fool’s Day and all. My father admitted he wished he were kidding, but it was true.
Grief experts explain some of our loved ones go during those fleeting moments when we’re not there in order to relieve us from pain.
I accept this in my mind, but my heart yearns for that gentle letting go as loving family and friends surround a loved one.
Had my father lived, he would be celebrating his 105th birthday, this year.
At least, he made it surpassed his goal to live until the year 2000.
I produced this short four-and-a-half-minute video as a tribute to him.
As the hours passed, while I stretched my creative muscles with severely limited tools, I began to heal. The one highlight–former caregiver and pianist, Debbie Center’s flawless performance of the music.
My wish is that my heartfelt tribute to my father will inspire you as you care for or remember your loved one.
Martin Avadian lived with Alzheimer’s from age 86 until he passed at age ninety in early 2001.
If the video does not display above, please view A tribute video to Martin Avadian who lived with Alzheimer’s
Our loved ones are not gone, they go on living in our hearts.