Most of us have never experienced a real loss. May
be a lost watch or phone, and the occasional family
member. But most of us pull through and go on living.
Some of us, pretend we pulled through and pretend that
we moved on. Some of us think that we moved on, and
hold our heads up high, knowing a single event that
day can send us crashing back into the harsh reality
that we haven't moved on and accepted that death is a
part of life; and some of us, just continue on. Living
day, after day, after day in a monotonous, dull,
routine because that routine is all we know. So we
continue living a soul-less, joy-less, depressed,
cold, and dim existence hoping that it would soon end.
The months surrounding Henry's death were as
soul-less, joy-less, depressed, cold, and dim as they
come. Yet the memory of how he died and my efforts to
bring him back were forever seared in my mind. One
would never expect such a tragedy to occur in a
seemingly ordinary day:
The sounds of sirens resonated through the halls
of the emergency room; But I wasn't affected. 3 years
in this hell of a hospital and you learn to get used
to the piercing sound of sirens, patients and frazzled
doctors. I was calmly attending to Mrs. Mueller's I.V.
drip when paramedics crashed through the emergency
room crying, "WE'VE GOT A CODE BLUE!". I immediately
dropped the I.V. in my hand and dashed to the
stretcher. When I got there I stood in horror when the
image of my bleeding, unconcious boyfriend was finally
processed. "Jack!", Dr. Helen Bauman cried. Coming out
of my trance, I immeditely detached myself and started
conecting him to the ECG. "He's in shock!", the
paramedic said. "He needs a transfusion!", I cry to
the nurse. Suddenly, the dreaded, high-pitched tone
came from the monitor. "Oh no!", I thought, "this
can't be happening!" Tears stream from my eyes as I
administer CPR while waiting for the defibrillator
pads to charge. "One, two, three, four, five, six,
seven", I count. "Please! You can't do this to me!", I
plead, "God PLEASE!"
*BLEEP* The defibrillator pads are charged. I detach
myself from Henry, forcing myself to think that he's
just an ordinary patient, I enter my doctor's
"CLEAR!", I shout. *THUMP* No response. "CLEAR!", I
shout again. *THUMP* Still no response! I continue.
But to no avail. I switch to administering
After an eternity of CPR, I accepted the grotesque
and horrifying reality: Henry was dead. He died in my
prescence. No goodbyes. Nothing. The doctor in me was
saying, "There was nothing you could have done. His
pupils were dilated; even if his condition stabilized,
he would have been in a coma. No amount of CPR and
electric jolts could bring his heart beating again.
You tried your best. Right now, that's all that could
I remember just sitting outside the emergency
room. Weeping. Helen got me to go home and rest. I lay
down on the bed; Our bed, and slept. I hoped that I
would just wake up from this dream and Henry would be
there soothing me and holding me in his strong, warm
embrace. I woke up, and Henry wasn't there. He would
never be there again.
The next days were nothing but a blur. Funeral
arrangements were made and that was it. During the
wake, I just smiled at the guests saying, "Thank you
for coming. We appreciate you being here at this
troubling time". I had no idea who "we" was, my
parents disowned me in a flash when I told them I was
gay. I had no one to really turn to except Helen. But
she wasn't here yet. I sat down and looked at the
casket. Henry was there lying down in his exquisite
lack suit, looking as if he was just taking a
well-deserved nap. I couldn't bear it-the sight of him
dead, the smell of flowers in the air, the looks of
pity I was getting from the guests and most
especially, I can't stand reality. I left the room and
walked to the park. I don't know how long I was
sitting there, staring at the maple trees, reminiscing
about the time when Henry and I just met. Helen came,
shook me of my trance and whispred, "Jack, it's time".
The funeral was hell. A serene, rainy, depressing
Hell. I listened as the priest administered the last
rites and everyone started leaving. I remained.
Sitting in the rain, two roses in my hand; one red,
one white, I stood and walked to Henry's coffin.
Kneeling in front of the casket, I couldn't bear
leaving him. I wept. Not the bawling out kind, but the
one with the tears just falling down your face. The
kind of weeping that comes from the depths of your
heart due to your soul gnawing at your insides in
sorrow. The kind that just keeps on going until you
fall into a state of absolute sadness that there's
nothing to do but stop.
I lie down on the wet grass.
The rain falls on my face.
With the roses in my hands, I weep. A part of me died,
a portion of my heart was gone. But my soul was still
in me. Clawing at my insides, grinding it's teeth, and
wailing how could I have not saved him.
I thought the funeral was hell. I obviously didn't
know what my life was going to be like in the next