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Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 – Advanced)
Topic: Era (02/03/11)

TITLE: The End Is Just The Beginning
By Lollie Hofer


It was strange hearing them talk about her as if she wasn’t there but Yvette was in the room and heard every word the doctors were saying. Even in her comatose state she was still aware of her surroundings.

“She’s certainly a fighter. Most people after this type of stroke, I’d give them maybe a 20% chance of recovery. Her fighting spirit increases the survival odds drastically,” her doctor said to an intern flipping through a medical chart.

Scratching his head, her doctor continued, “The strange thing is I don’t see any reason for her to fight so hard. She lives in a nursing home with no family or friends nearby that we’re aware of. Something is causing her to cling tenaciously to this life.”

Attempting to turn her head even slightly, Yvette tried to open her eyes to let the doctor know she didn’t plan on going anywhere anytime soon. The effort was too much for her weakened body. Instead, she lay motionless on the bed, a miniscule tear running down her face and onto her pillow.

Daddy, how can I make them understand? It’s for you that I fight death so hard. I’m sorry, Daddy. I would love to go home to be with Jesus and to see you and Momma and the rest of the family. But I can’t. Not now. It would be the end and I know the end would break your heart.

Pausing from turning pages, the intern looked up as deep frown marks appeared across his brow. “Doctor Rodgers, isn’t it unusual for a person this far advanced in age to request to be resuscitated? Don’t most request not to be revived?”

Looking over the intern’s shoulder at the chart the doctor shrugged, “That’s part of the mystery. We don’t understand why a 95 year old person would fight death so hard. I’ve known Mrs. Clark for years and she doesn’t seem the type who’s afraid of dying. She’s strong in her faith and all.”

Oh Daddy, I know you were disappointed when I was born. Your last child was a daughter just like the four older children. You were an only child, as was Mother. Your continued legacy rested in your last child, me. I know it hurt you deeply and that’s why you nicknamed me “Boy.” You knew when I and my siblings died, your legacy would die as well. Well Daddy, I’m hanging on for you. I’ve been fighting death for years now. If it is within my power to do so, I will not end your legacy today.

Turning to the intern on duty for the night the doctor instructed, “I’ll leave a message with the nurse to notify you if there’s any change in her condition. How much longer can this poor soul hang on? I hope she finds her peace before too long. She’s suffered enough.”

Daddy, I know the end is near. I want your legacy to last just a little while longer. The ending of this era seems so sad. I don’t know, maybe I’m looking at it all wrong. Daddy, is Jesus there with you? I sure do need to talk with Him right now. Maybe He can help me sort all this out.

Before turning off the lights for the night, the nurse stood watching Yvette’s face. She too was a woman of faith and was praying for the elderly woman to find peace. “You know, this isn’t the end for you. It’s just the beginning. It’s okay to let go. Jesus is waiting.”

Did you hear that Daddy? Did you hear what she said? Maybe I am looking at this wrong. Maybe Jesus sent her to me to help make sense of all of this. It’s not the end of your legacy, not really. Your legacy has been handed down from generation to generation and it is alive in me right now. It will live in me even after I die.

The nurse came running as a warning bell went off on Yvette’s machines.

Your legacy will be complete when we are together again. It’s the end of life as I know it but it’s the beginning of life as it will forever be.

After fighting to save her life for twenty minutes, the intern looked at the clock for time of death. Watching the flat line on the machine, the staff wished her only the best as Yvette entered into a new stage of her life…eternity with Jesus and her family.

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This article has been read 415 times
Member Comments
Member Date
Henry Clemmons02/10/11
Wow. You caught and held my attention with this. Very thought provoking and very unique, creative, and sad, but with a positive ending. I liked it. Hope it does well.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/12/11
This touched me in so many ways. As a parent it made me realize how important it is to be careful what I say to my kids. They so want to please us. Great message on many levels. Several people will read this and each could take a different important message from it. That's good writing.
Barbara Lynn Culler02/12/11
Wow, this brought goose bumps. Amazing how are parents treat us carries into old age. Well done.
Theresa Santy 02/14/11
Yes, goose bumps, and a very rapid heartbeat. Loved it.
Kate Oliver Webb 02/14/11
Wow - this is heavy stuff. But realism can be that way, and you made it real. Great writing.
Gregory Kane02/15/11
A great message. I guest preached recently on the importance of living well and dying well but I could tell that the congregation wasn't too thrilled with my message. They didn't want to hear about death; they only wanted positive affirmations about faith. Yet, as your story powerfully portrays, death need hold no fear to those who love Jesus. Let's show the world how very different the children of God are! Vert well done.
Melanie Kerr 02/15/11
I wonder if, in heaven, the father watched his daughter's struggle and wished he could live his life over and not call her "boy".
Lollie Hofer02/15/11
Now that we've thrown our hinting bricks I'm going to comment on my story (something I don't normally do). There are five girls in our family and the youngest is nicknamed "Boy" because my stepfather so desperately wanted a boy. Sara has been able to come to terms with the nickname because she knows her dad loved her very much. But it did get me to thinking about why he did that...it really is the end of his earthly legacy when his daughters die; thus, the premise for this story. The good news is he was saved shortly before he died and my sister is also a Christian so his legacy will live for eternity. :)
diana kay02/15/11
this was a gripping piece of writing and told so well. i have come in late enough with my comments to get your foot note. how hard for someone to feel they are a disappointment.i am glad she found peace. Often it is the surviving relatives that dont want to "let an elderly person go" it was interesting the way you turned this on its head.
Rachel Phelps02/15/11
What a heart-wrenching story. Excellent voice throughout - held my focus completely.
Noel Mitaxa 02/16/11
I love your portrayal of the scope of Yvette's thinking, and her struggle to connect with all those around her. And the close was so gentle.
Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom 02/17/11
Congratulations for placing 12th in level 3!