He lived most of his life on his own terms. I know he didn't foresee the tragedies he would have to face, bankruptcy, the death of both of his wives and of his only son. I'm sure he was devastated by those losses, yet he never complained. He just stood tall and moved forward.
Two years ago he moved back home to the city he was born in but left almost 70 years ago. There no longer was anyone there that was family and when we near the end of life, having the life we're used to without the people that love us in it, isn't much of a life at all. He didn't say much about how he was liking the change, like everything he had to deal with he just made the best of things and kept moving forward.
Then his body began to betray him. First a stroke and a hospital stay, then a rehab facility. Then another hospital stay for a bleeding ulcer only this time he refused to go to rehab. This time he went home. To the home he lived in from Thanksgiving weekend of 2014 until sometime last night when he went to sleep to wake up no more.
I knew Tuesday that he'd given up. I knew it was a matter of time but still was shocked to my core when I called there this morning to tell him I was still contagious and would see him Monday and his sister-in-law answered the phone. She and my other Uncle had gone to pick him up to go grocery shopping. His body was there, he wasn't. Odd how things occur, isn't it?
He didn't like being sick, he didn't like being dependent on anyone. It took away his confidence in himself. It also took his will to live with it. He was no longer able to live life on his terms and that made life something he no longer wanted. It doesn't matter whether or not another stroke took him or whether or not his heart gave out. He'd made the most of his 93 years. It was time to say goodbye.