the saddest, most heartbreaking thing I have ever witnessed.
I am an RN and work in our smalltown hospital ER.
Last night we had a elderly woman come in, she was unresponsive and had been down for 30 minutes by the time the ambulance arrived at our hospital.
We worked her, but there was literally nothing we could do.
The entire time there was this elderly man; who appeared so lost, so broken, holding his hat and just standing there. The parmedic said he had held her hand the entire time and only let go to get off the ambulance. We wouldn't let him back in the room while we were working on her.
The doctor then went and told him there was was nothing he could do to bring her back. He let out the most gutwrenching sob I have ever heard. If a heart could break, the sound of his sobs would have shattered mine. The doctor helped him sit down and explained what happened but he was not listening..he just wanted to see his wife.
So we let him and for hours that man sat and held her hand. Finally, we had to tell him it was time to say goodbye. It just broke me. I sat out in the waiting room with him. He told me stories about his lovely lady and how they had such a wonderful day that day. I asked him if he wanted me to call anyone to come get him and he said no, there was no one. His children lived out of state and his siblings were gone. He'd just call a cab. I asked if he wanted me to call his minister, and he said no. He simply wanted to go home.
I felt like the biggest asshole because I had no choice but to let this poor man go home in a cab---- alone. In the end, you can tell it pained him to leave his wife behind..but we helped him in the cab and I gave him the biggest hug and told him that I am so incredibly sorry for his loss. I had to fight back tears. He didn't want to leave her there, he felt lost without her, and he was going home, opening the door to a house, without her in it. ;(
I keep thinking about this man and haven't really slept all that good today because everytime I try, I see his eyes and how completely broken he was. Remembering how he said he had no one and just how alone he was.
Would it be OK of me to maybe attend his wife's showing? For him? As an ER nurse, we don't get the joy of bonding with our patients, and even though we couldn't save his wife, I just feel like I developed a connection with this man even though I only talked to him for roughly 30 minutes but watched him nearly the entire time he was in our ER.