Previous Challenge Entry (Level 4 – Masters)
Topic: Hear (07/08/10)
TITLE: True Silence
By Angela M. Baker-Bridge
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“Oh God,” I whispered, “Why must he suffer so?”
I called for his medical team. After they administered additional medication, he was able to slip into an induced level of rest. By then however, I was fully awake. Pacing as I prayed, the lump in my throat thickened. The ticking clock, the beeping monitors, his labored breathing, the hallway’s clatter, nurses chattering, footsteps, all sounds I didn’t want to hear in the middle of the night.
Settling back into my chair, I reached for my laptop. As it powered up, I wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I wasn’t in the mood to read email. I had already searched the Internet repeatedly trying to understand the medical terms thrown my way. Then it occurred to me.
As a blank PowerPoint presentation opened, my fingertips hovered over the keyboard, eager to respond to my heart’s voice. The clickety-click of the keys momentarily drowned out the bombarding beepity-beep of his bodily bulletins.
Collaborating peaceful landscapes, scriptures of healing, and his favorite piano sacred songs, brought me tremendous satisfaction. Finally, there was something I could do to help ease his anxiety and pain. Setting my laptop on his bedside table, I pressed the slideshow key to unveil my creation. With his eyes still closed, a peace prevailed upon his face as his breathing slowed. We were winning the spiritual battle in the heavens. The machines pronounced death. The music proclaimed life. There was only one thing left to do before closing my eyes.
Gently placing his warm weathered hand in mine, I leaned in close to his ear as I barely whispered, “Daddy, should God take you home while I’m asleep, please know that I love you and always will.”
Tears rolled down my cheeks as I felt him gently squeeze my hand. An unexpected serenity flooded my heart as the final notes of dad’s favorite hymn filled his hospital room…It Is Well With My Soul.
Knowing my father could hear the songwriter’s words as well as my final farewell made it easier for me to release him into God’s hands.
Shortly thereafter, as the machines were disconnected and his labored breathing stopped, for the first time in my life I could hear the sound of true silence.
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