By Richard Bleil
Where am I. So much noise. What’s…why…why can’t I see?
Ugh, that incessant beeping; what is that?
We have to stop this bleeding; sponge.
Doctor, her blood pressure is dro…
…alleviated the pressure as best would could on her brain, but…
Ugh, there’s that beeping, And what’s the constant air sound?
…the prognosis is not promising.
We’ll keep an eye on her, but she may never recover.
Who…who’s crying? He sounds familiar.
Thank you, doctor. I’ll, um…
Just take some time. You don’t need to do anything for now. The respirator is keeping her alive. Just take time to adjust, and we’ll know more in time.
Ugh, this pain in my arm. It feels like a needle…my elbow is so…stiff. Come on…open your eyes…open…OPEN…
How long will mommy be like this?
I don’t know, Cassandra. We’ll visit every day, though, until she’s better.
Cassandra. Cassandra! My daughter!!! Sweety, hug me! I…I can’t move my…Cassandra…
I hate that guy.
Steve, I know. That’s natural. But the police will take care of him.
But I want to…
I know, Steve. We need to trust the system.
Damn that beeping. Stevie, Cassandra, I’m here! I’m HERE! If I can just move my lips…I…if I can just make a noise…just some…any…
It wasn’t perfect
But, I got the third highest score of the boys in the class.
Hug me, Stevie. Stevie, if mommy could talk, she’d tell you she needs a hug!
His voice is so low, I can barely hear…damn this beeping…
Daddy took Cassie to the cafeteria.
It’s okay, baby, mommy’s here…
While…while they’re gone…
Stevie, what could it be?
I…I didn’t mean it…
I didn’t mean those things, I…I just didn’t want to do my homework…
It’s my fault, mommy, if I hadn’t…you wouldn’t…I wish you could say something!
It’s not your fault sweetheart…none of this is your fault…if only I could…
I’m so sorry, I didn’t mean those things I said…
I know, baby. It’s okay, mommy loves you…
I love you, mommy. I…I really…I do
How’s mommy, Steve?
Steve? Are you okay?
Yeah, daddy, I’m f…
The doctor. What is he sorry for. Damned that beeping.
But we believe she is just too far gone.
It’s time to consider stopping the machines.
No, I’m here…I’m not gone! I’m here! I’m RIGHT HERE! TALK!! JUST TALK!!!!!
You’re…you’re talking about…
He’s crying…don’t let them do it…
We believe it’s time to let her die.
…don’t let them…
I just need a little more time…
Yes, yes, I need time…just give me time…
I understand. Tell you what, I’ll schedule an appointment with one of our therapists so you have somebody to talk with. Would you like to speak with a chapl…
Okay, Cassie, the nice nurse took Steve to get some fruit.
Cassie? Open your eyes, damnit. OPEN THEM!
It’s okay, mommy can hear you. You can talk to her.
Daddy’s right, sweetheart. Damned beeping. Mommy’s here, Cassie. I can hear you even if you can’t hear me.
Do you want me to leave so you can be alone with mommy? No? Okay, I’m here. Take your time sweetheart.
God, I want to hear your voice. Please say something.
Cassie, Steve will be back soon. What do you want to say.
Please, please say it.
Mommy, come home
I’m sorry, sir, but it’s probably best to talk without the children here.
Talk about what?
It’s okay, come on kids. I’ll get you some ice cream.
Who is she? Is she the nurse?
Okay, what is going on?
I’m really sorry, sir, but there was a procedural problem.
Procedural? Is something wrong with me?
What are you talking about?
The department wants to extend its most sincere apologies.. We won’t be able to press charges. He’s been released.
But my wife! What…
We’re very sorry, sir.
But why do we have to say goodbye?
Goodbye? Please don’t say goodbye!
I told you, Steve, mom has to…go away.
Please don’t go, mommy.
Oh, Cassie! I’m…wake up…WAKE UP DAMNIT!!!!
It was difficult, but we made a decision.
Thomas, don’t do this. I’m here! I’M HERE!
We’ve decided that the best thing for her is to let it end.
Thomas, no, I just need a little more time!
Cold against my chest,
Do you want to be here when…
Yes, please. Can I have just a moment?
Please don’t do this.
Sure. Ring the nurse alarm when you’re ready.
Warmth against my lips. Please, please just stay…
I’m so sorry. I…I want you to know how blessed I am to have had you in my life at all. I really, I don’t know what I’ll do…I’m so sorry. God, I can’t even talk. You’ve done so much for me. You’ve made me a better version of myself.
Warmth again. I think, I think he’s hugging me…
I’m so sorry. I’ll miss you every moment of the rest of my life.
Oh, god, I can hear his crying. Is, is that the nurse alarm I hear?
Are you ready?
I love her too much to let her keep struggling. I need to be strong and be here for her when…
I understand. I appreciate your courage.
The beeping, it…it stopped