His Voice

March 16, 2011
Cancer is like a bullet shot from a gun. The noise is unsettling and the fear is earthshaking. I had an uncle who died of this terrible disease. He was a sweet and sensitive man, imagine that. Never expressed the pain we all knew he was in. Just put on a smile so genuine and true. The last time I saw him, I was standing at the end of his hospital bed. He looked far too pale and much too weak. I found it hard to believe that this was the same man who once sang me to sleep. The room was dreary, so plain and boring. Not a lot of space for the sorrowful guests. Just a chair placed next to my uncle, who laid in his bed. Family members came in, asking once again, “How do you feel today?” Expecting nothing more than a nod or a sigh in his reply. They brought in bright, spring-like balloons and sweet smelling flowers, which added color to the room. Soon enough, they would have to go, always leaving with the words, “We will see you soon.” But sometimes silence speaks louder than words. Because everyone knew the truth, yet refused to say, these next few days would be all that he had. That's when my mother whispered to me, “Go on and say your final good-bye. He's too sick to talk, but can hear just fine.” So I walked along the side of the bed, feeling so small and too young to understand. Up on my tip toes, I leaned in to kiss his cheek, then whispered the words, “I love you Uncle Pat. Please, don't forget me.” He slowly turned his head, so we were face to face. Blinking just once, that was his silent response. I walked back to my mother, where she held me close. Just as we were about to leave, I heard his voice, so fragile but sweet. With a smile half-shown, he said, “I love you Marie.”





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valerie said...
Apr. 18, 2011 at 9:07 am
mother of a teen who wrote this-- she wrote this perfectly and soo true .  she has a heart of gold
 
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