A Holy Feat After 15 Minutes
“I have mentioned this question to you already. Have you figured it out yet? Intubation? Yes? He is going through extreme pain. Just let him go. Once the tube is inserted, most likely we won’t be able to take it off. Leave alone that now five minutes have already passed since his last breath. Even if we intubate him now and save his life back, he might suffer from serious brain damage. So, just let him go so he will not suffer any longer." The words of the doctor still lingered in my ears.
To be rational, I know that I should just take the doctor’s advice, but emotionally I cannot cut off my love for my husband. All these happened too quickly. Even though the shadow of the terminal stage of bile duct cancer has cast over us since seven months ago and therefore declared the impermanence of the human life. He has survived the potential deadly septicemia, which was triggered by abnormally low blood pressure. How can he now die from a suffocation caused by nose bleeding? I cannot accept the fact and I will not know how to face and tell my in-laws. As I fought for my views with the doctors, 15 minutes after my husband stopped breathing, I pushed the medical team to go for the intubation and then miraculously my husband’s heart was beating again and was next rushed from oncology ward to intensive care unit for further observation.
Yes, his heart has started beating, but how meaningful is it with the whites of his eyes turned up and wax-yellowish color on his face? This kind of struggle seems meaningless and is as his last way to be with those alive. “Just wait for the in-laws who live in the south. Just wait for the families and friends to come and say goodbye and see him for the last time," said the doctor nicely to me. He kept reminded me that the so-called miracle is a fact that does not exist. He advised me to turn off the life support machine after everyone has come to see him the last time. “Be considerate to your husband. Do not torture his body and soul anymore. Let him go. Let everything go freely. Send your blessings to him. This is the most important and best thing you can do for your husband." The doctor’s words may be right, but my wish to talk to my husband is so strong. I know that his passing will free him from the suffering and pains from the metastasis of the cancer to the bones. But, he is still so young. His parents who are still alive still have great expectations of him. How can I agree to pull out the tube? I cannot accept the fact that my husband is soon to leave us. I can only hang on firmly to my belief. My body was wailing on a verge of collapse, but I kept in my mind strongly the image of the most respected and holy Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. Master, whom I rely on, please empower my husband with your Buddha power. Let him come back awake to me. If he cannot be conscious and come back to me due to the karma as a result of the Law of the Cause and Effect, please take him and help him to gain rebirth in the Western Paradise of the Ultimate Bliss of Amitabha Buddha. Liberate him from the sufferings in the cycles of reincarnations. This is my most sincere begging and beseeching.
Ignoring all others’ advice, I went to the altar room and listened to the Dharma expounded by Pamu on my knees and in my merits transference, I sincerely prayed and begged H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. That night, I vaguely seemed to hear the questions from Pamu: Should he come back? Or not? She asked them a couple of times. All right, then he should. Pamu’s firm but gentle words appeared in the morning in my confused sleep state. Maybe that was just a dream at night due to my thoughts at day time. I did not pay much attention to it and went back to the altar room to listen respectfully to the Dharma again. I beseeched spiritual calmness and waited for the time when I am able to visit my husband in the ICU.
He has been in the coma for 48 hours. In addition to that, he has gone through 15 minutes of emergency rescue. Even if a miracle does happen, his consciousness will definitely not be clear. You must be ready for it. If unfortunately, the tube will be pulled out, you need to be physically fit to take care of the funeral. Eat something. Do not grieve too much. Your two daughters still need your care. They are still young. You must take good care of yourself. My friends’ concerns make sense. The main supporter of the household may be gone now, but I cannot be the same. My two understanding daughters have been supporting me and hugging me from the moment they learned that their Father has been intubated. They have been staying next to me without shedding any tears. They are really the most precious gifts sent to me by the Buddhas and Bodhisattvas. Looking at how strong they have been, I felt so ashamed at my weakness and wailing. I wiped off my tears and told myself not to cry anymore. I told my daughters not to worry anymore. They should feel free to express their pains from losing their family member.
“Dad, I’m here." as my older daughter called out to her father, my husband opened his eyes. He looked at her with a look that we are so familiar with. Is he conscious? I hesitated. My husband who has been in a coma for 48 hours miraculously opened his eyes, I was thrilled and asked, “Do… you remember us? Do you understand our words?" My husband closed and opened his eyes to express himself. My god! He remembers us. His consciousness is clear.
“He has been conscious since the morning. His mind is clear and he is able to raise his hand, shake or nod his head to express himself." After the nurse saw our excitement, she described to us the miraculous moment of his waking.
I thank all Buddhas and Bodhisattvas in the ten directions. I thank Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III. I also thank Awang Norbu Pamu. So, the dream state in the morning was true and not false. The merits accrued from listening to Buddha Dharma is true and not false and miraculous. I am grateful. I thank all my family and friends and their blessings. After going through 15 minutes of stopped breathing, my husband miraculously woke up and his consciousness was clear. Even though now he still has to go through therapies to practice breathing on his own, and he is still not free from all pains, I now am able to see my husband at a set time and cheer him up. My heart is full of gratitude.
To be able to experience such miraculous happiness, I firmly believe that it is a result of the empowerment from the Buddha power of Namo H.H. Dorje Chang Buddha III and merits from listening to the Dharma. So grateful!
Buddhist Disciple Ling with gratitude with my palms together