Doris did not want to have a prolonged last illness, nor did she want her family to have to watch a painful decline. She told me many times that some day she was going to go to sleep and just never wake up.
This is the story of the strong will and determination of my mom. A woman with a great sense of humor and one of the best story tellers I have ever met. Being with her was always compelling and entertaining.
It was New Years Day and she and I devoured a ton of sushi, a huge assortment of her favorite pickles, manju for dessert and mugs and mugs of green tea. We sat and ate and talked and laughed and ate some more until we finished every bit of food to be seen.
I left feeling really good about my mom, she was sleepy with good food and content with our happy News Years Day celebration.
The next morning I received a call from her caregivers that Doris would not wake up and that there was no reason for it.
I could not wake her up, none of her friends or caregivers could either. She told me that morning, without even opening her eyes, “Itai” and gently pushed me away. That was the last word she said to anyone.
Itai can mean pain but as she said this she gave me a small frown that was more of annoyance and I felt like I was intruding on her journey.
Doris slipped away from us peacefully in her sleep, just as she always said she would.