That stethoscope was one of my first “big” investments after finishing nursing school. It has listened to countless heartbeats, breaths, and bellies gurgling. It has been held on the chests of brand new babies, and the most experienced/eldest of our population. It has heard drum like heartbeats, strong and regular after being reperfused in surgery. It has listened through silence as families held their breaths and each other, waiting for confirmation that their loved one was gone.
I bought that stethoscope with pride, green shiny eyes bright with anticipation of a beautiful career and hope for healing as many people as I could, never imagining I’d ever have to use it on my own mother.
Listening, waiting through painfully long pauses for each shallow breath. Each irregular but strong heartbeat. Hoping only for peace and healing for us all, and no more suffering for her. Listening.. waiting..