Part 2 : The Final Week
Mummy has been unwell since mid June. At first, she was observed at MAEPS, Serdang for she was stable but soon she began experiencing headache, nausea and shortness of breath. She was then transferred to Hospital Sungai Buloh and treated accordingly. She seemed to respond to her treatment but the complications were permanent. Her lungs were functioning at less than 30%. In a way, she will require oxygen support at home. so, the hunt for an oxygen concentrator begun.
I got in touch with this guy called Eugene who was selling the Philips-respirator thing. I liked that he took the time to understand the requirements of my mother and advised accordingly. For comparison, I got in touch with another distributor of a different brand. Didn’t like that guy that all, gunalah sentimen ‘sayang mak’ ke apa.. Me no likey. So, I chose Eugene.
Got my mom a wheelchair and a walking stick with those stools too. So she could walk outside to the yard and talk to her potted plants. My brothers even moved her double bed from upstairs to the living room. Right in front of the TV cause she wanted to watch Netflix. We were ready to receive her at home and provide her with round-the-clock care. Like a queen.
However, Allah had different plans.
I received a phonecall from the physician saying that she deteriorated, almost immediately. She was no longer on nasal prong. She needed one of those high flow masks. Her case was referred to the anaes team but somehow I knew, her prognosis was guarded. True enough, she was not an ideal candidate for non invasive ventilation nor intubation. I would say the same if I was on the anaes team. Which leaves palliative care as the management plan. To make her comfortable until its time for her to go. Mummy was allowed visitors and the physician strongly insisted that I come see her before the weekend. Only, I was a bit stuck with the roster.
There were thoughts of,
“Possible ke.. Cukup orang ke?”
When I eventually asked nervously for an Emergency Leave (EL) from my boss, her response was a wholehearted yes, to go see my mother,
‘mak you ni tak akan jumpa jual kat mana2. Go and I hope she gets well soon. I am sure your good friends can cover. Saya doakan segala urusan dipermudahkan. Banyakkan berdoa’
I had wanted to leave the next morning but at 230am, I received a call from Hospital Sungai Buloh. I was put on a video call with my mom. She was drowsy and very lethargic. Medically her GCS is like E3V5M5. I couldn’t really hear her words. All I could pick up was Sayang and Maaf. After the call, I had to act fast. First, I called my sister to inform her of the current situation. Thankfully, she is a light sleeper. She and the brothers went to the ward in a jiff and accompanied my mom while I make my way there. It was a mess but doable.
For rentas negeri police clearance, I had to print a few things. The form, my IC and the letter from hospital. I made 2 copies and filled it in straight. Nasiblah rumah ada printer dengan pen. Haneem was already awake from the printer sound, so I told her to kejut Ee and started packing their clothes to bring to the grandmother. Chose an ironless outfit for myself, made some milk for Haneem and asked EE to call my mother in law for urgent drop-off.
I overheard EE speaking on the phone
” nenek. Kejap lagi ee ngan anim dtg rumah”
tu je ayat kau.meh.
After the drop off, tetiba mcm blur – balai polis kat mana. Nasiblah awal pagi, boleh gostan kalau salah jalan. Mula2 pergi balai kat batu berendam. Gate besar dia tutup plak dari jauh. Ni kena goncang ke apa gate besar dia ni. Nak jerit2 dari luar ke ‘tolong..tolong’. Ok, niat abandoned. Tetiba teringat ada balai polis kat ayer keroh. Alhamdulillah, terang balai tu. Takde gate. Scan mysejahtera, scan suhu, bagi borang. Polis tegas tapi berhikmah dan prihatin. Dalam kepala selalu repeat ‘police are doing their job to ensure that you are safe, that the country is safe – if ikut arahan, should be ok’
Takkanlah dia tiba2 nak gari kalau tudung tak matching baju kannn..
Selesai cop borang, tetiba panik.. Kat mana aku nak carik touch and go ni. Sejak tahun lepas tak pernah gi merentas, dah lupa dah pasal tol. Berenti kereta tepi jalan. Nak call husband, husband kat JB. Mak mertua rasanya tak pakai touch n go. Siapa kawan yg aku ada yang aku boleh kacau? Last2 decide tepon nik azizah, sbb dia ketua batch sekolah dan rasanya dia ada di melaka. Insyaallah diatak marah kalau sis call dia.. Sebab dia presiden batch yang sedia membantu. Boleh ke mcm tu alasan dia. . Tapi nik tidur mati plak.. Adeh.
Maka sis pasang mode reckless.. Buat dulu pikir kemudian
Sis redah tol dgn touch n Go yg kat IC walaupun tkde duit kt dalam tu. Duit cash yang sis ada hanyalah daripada baki duit raya yang husband bagi hari tu. Cukuplah nk top up kat highway. Kalau palang tu tak naik, nak buat muka seposen kat polis roadblock tepi tol tu, pinnjam touch and go dia. Ibarat patient gi appointment klinik, tetiba dia period dan mintak pad dari doktor. Tak akan ada doktor tak bagi pinjam pad, kalau dia takde, dia akan mintak dari nurse. So logiknya kalau polis tu tkde, mungkin dia akan call kawan dia kat balai memana, bagi kad touch n go.
Kalau tkde jugak, aku kejut je memana abang yg tido dlm lori tepi jalan tu.. Mintak pinjam touch and go. Dia punya reckless dah tahap camtuh.
Alhamdulilah, palang naik. Tq for the genius who decided to incorproate touch n go dlm mykad. Tq also for the genious who decided to build hospital sungai buloh dekat dgn tol. Senang nak carik dalam gelap.
What happened afterwards was what I would describe as urusan dipermudahkan. Mummy must have done a lot of good things in her lifetime.
We managed to talk to her (whisper in her ear). We like to think that she can hear but she cannot respon. Recited yassin multiple times, selawat and all. We took turns as respect to the guard and hospital policy. Yelah.. Orang lain pun ada family members dying. Dalam wad pun ada pesakit lain jugak. We keep our voices and cries to the lowest decibel. Just enough for mum to hear. When I first arrived, her oxygen saturation was about 62-63&. She was tachycardic at 150 ish. I removed the BP cuff and just kept the oximeter on. Within the next 2 hours, her sats dropeed to less than 50%, she became bradycardic. Nearing her time, she changed her own position from bain on her side to supine. Her peripheries were getting cold. She was starting to gasp. We removed her mask and my brothers repeatedly recited the syahadha in her ears. And just like that, she let out her final breath and is gone. Her pupils were dilated. She had no pulse. We took a minute to just sit there before I called the staff to come over and confirm her death for medicolegal purposes.
Time of death 733am and classified as kematian biasa.
The staff proceeded to process her Last Office. We kemas her things and waited at Jabatan Forensik. There were just us. No one else. We were told that we could engage with recognized 3rd parties (they gave us a name list of ustaz and ustazah) to help mandi and solat jenazah patient. THANKFULLY, my quick thinking siblings brought cash with them. nak harap kakak dia ni memang taklah… . We had enough to pay for everything.
RM650 for mandi and solat jenazah (khidmat imam)
RM250 for urusan lot pengebumian – we called up the person in charge of tanah perkuburan usj 22. We stayed at USJ during our early years in semenanjung.
RM 23 for van jenazah from hospital to USJ 22.
It was a very calming and insightful process. Ustazah Hasnah guided us on how to mandikan our mom, she told us to take a photo of mom glowing as a memory, to make a voicecall with her other loved ones who couldn’t be there. Who are jauh in sarawak. Actually, there was a time that we were caught off guard. Ustazah asked what was our grandmothers name. I think we went blank. We never met our grandmother, we only know her name was Siti. So we said Siti . apa ni yasmin… May Allah forgive us. Once she dikapankan, we performed solat jenazah. The 4 of us siblings with the ustaz. Me and my sister boleh plak bawak telekung tkde kain. Nasiblah mummy ada stokin. Maka pakai ajaleh telekung dgn stokin. It was a very simple, straight forward process. After the prayers, van jenazah dah sedia. Danial sat in with the jenazah. My sister and I trailed behind Matin’s car to the graveyard. The police at SJR were quick to let us through when Matin showed and informed them of mummy’s death cert.
Once we reach Tapak Perkuburan USJ22, it was near 12 noon. A space was already dug for her. sekarang mana de org cangkul2, guna mesin je. Cantik je segiempat tepat dia. Her body was lowered into the ground with my brothers at the receiving end. within minutes my husband managed to arrive after crossing so many states. Ada ‘tal-kin’ from the ustaz on site, with a bit of nasihat. since it is PKP, only 10 family members are allowed at one time to pay respect to the dead. We were less than 10, so no worries. We stayed for a while, baca yassin, siram2 air. Admiring the little tree they picked to mark mummy’s grave. I couldn’t help wondering what is happening to mom at the time.
has the angels come to visit her? Will she be able to answer their questions? How could we help ease her journey in alam kubur as her children?
All urusan yang penting was completed before Zuhur. After that, it is more of paperwork and stuff. Again, another learning process for another day. We came home with black panda eyes and a severe body ache. I had a headache. Relieved with mcdonalds. Saw a few whatsapp and phonecalls from unknown numbers. ni mesti orang2 yang tah pape dpt nombor doktor vaksin nehhhhh.. or abang J&T.
Urusan kematian sangat penat but alhamdulillah, I feel it was Ok for us. I am ever so grateful to have my brothers and my sister. InsyaAllah we will make mom proud to have children like us.