Two weeks ago I blogged about the Akad Nikah ceremony and how my brother cried asking us to take him there and how in the end he, as usual, got his way. Yesterday was the reception at the bride's home.
This time it was a completely different ball game altogether. I got there and he was not outside the the house as he usually was. I said to myself that I couldn't be expecting him to be outside all the time so I got into the house and sure enough he was on his wheelchair with his head drooping, mouth opened and sleeping slumped in his wheelchair. So I went straight inside not wanting to disturb him.
While waiting I went to the hall and he was awake but looked very distant. He just did not connect with me. Even when I spoke to him he seemed to not be there. His answers were inaudible. His stomach was definitely bigger and his feet swollen badly. I asked how he was but received no answer. I just sat there waiting.
The groom looked handsome in his traditonal costume. He was ready; everyone was ready. As he was about to leave the house the groom went to his father but again my brother was so detached from the whole thing that was going on. He just looked up but did not say a word. As his son kissed his hand he just looked, lost.
I had a tummy ache and excused myself early from the reception at the bride's place. My eldest nephew, the brother of the groom, offered to take me home. On the way, he let the cat out of the bag. "Uncle Ajit" (thats what they call me) dia dok syoor (high) tu. Dia kena makan ubat tidoq sekali sehari tapi dia dok kena 4 kali lani (instead of once as reccomended, he is taking his sleeping pills 4 times a day). Kalau tak bagi dia buat kacau (otherwise he makes a big fuss). Dia selalu high, dia dah addicted dah (he is always high, he is an addict now)
I kept silent thinking of what my nephew had told me. All I could say was, "bagi kat dia, biaq pi" (give them to him). Why do I say that? He doesn't have long to live, give him what he wants. I don't know if I had made the right decision. Then my nephew added that my brother fell off his wheelchair one day because he was too high to know what happened. The problem with him is despite taking the pills he still couldn't sleep. I kept quite again chosing not to say anything, leaving the decision to them.
I was also told that he was taken to the hospital to drain the excess fluid in his tummy (the last time about 2 months ago, they drained 4 pints of fluid) but the doctors refused to do it because his BP was too low.
Many things went through my head. If we stopped his sleeping pills he would go wild asking for them. Considering his current BP, anything could happen if he suddenly gets violent. If we continue, the doses would only get higher and he would be totally dependent on that stuff. Is giving him what he asked for the right thing to do? Is denying him his doses (done in good faith) the right thing to do? I continued sitting on the sofa by his side. When he was awake he would just stare blankly at nothing, then lapse into a slumber with his head drooping. He was such a sorry sight and I felt tears running down my cheeks again.
The reception in his house would be this coming Sunday and I don't know what it would be like. Would he still be sitting on his wheelchair, high? Would he for once agree to go to his room and rest there? Would he still be around?
I usually have an answer for almost everything but not this time. Like him, I am also staring at nothing, not able to find a solution. I may be cruel, but, if left to me, since he is dying already, I would let him have what he wants. Yes, I can make decisions since I am his brother, but I have to respect his wife's and children's wishes. They are not keen, that I know.
Manage to find the camera. I thought I have lost it. See How he is looking at nothing.
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