These last few days have not been kind to him. This cruel disease had robbed him of all the things that he could do. All the advances he had made over the spring and summer taken away one by one. He still wanted to say goodbye to visitors, demanding to be carried to the door, even when he could barely manage a wave. But he was caught between what the tumour was doing to his body and what the medicines were doing him. There was nowhere left to go. He was a spectator on his own life, watching others do things for him that he used to do himself.
In the evening, he started to require increasing amounts of oxygen and his breathing not only decreasing in rate but also intensity. The wife got in bed with him to encourage him to breathe and massage his chest. She talked to him about needing to breathe in order to help auntie run a race. For a while it worked but after a few hours even this and more and more oxygen was not helping. So, we decided to turn to monitor and the pumps off and to stop urging him to breathe. I held his hand and the wife discussed things he liked. She went through two of his favourite recipes, the ingredients, preparation and cooling times. At the very end of the second recipe he was gone.
After a while, I dressed him in his favourite clothes and made him look presentable. Little panda with him, he looked for all the world as if he was asleep about to wake from a nap. In my sleep deprived state I kept having the illusion that could see his chest rise and fall a bit. But it isn't.
We are trying not to remember him as he was in the last few weeks but earlier. The ever-cheerful, inquisitive, sociable little boy who was full of cuddles. When the wife accused him of beastliness he always said "No. I'm a nice boy". He was right. He was a lovely, happy boy and he leaves a massive hole in our lives. We will miss you little boy.