Thursday 27 April 2017

This Man's Life: Blessings of morphine and thought bubbles saying: 'I don't belong here'

'Everything appeared changed in her, in life, once she had gone into that bed in St James's Hospital. I went in there last week for a walk around on my lunch break from the Sunday Independent, and the memories, good and bad flooded back' Stock photo: Tyler Olson
'Everything appeared changed in her, in life, once she had gone into that bed in St James's Hospital. I went in there last week for a walk around on my lunch break from the Sunday Independent, and the memories, good and bad flooded back' Stock photo: Tyler Olson
Barry Egan

Barry Egan

It was her. And yet not her. She looked so tiny under that blue hospital blanket. I wondered what went on in my mother's heavily sedated mind? What was she thinking, really thinking, slumped in that bed... with tubes sprouting out of her... with a plastic bag sticking out of the side of her... with 10 feet of her intestines cut out of her by the doctors... with liquid food being pumped in through her nose?

My mother's thought bubble must have read: "I don't belong here." (I imagined my poor mother screaming those words until she was out of breath.)

Or: "How much more dignity do you want me to lose?"

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