The Last Christmas
Published by: eXtasy Books
Author : Seelie Kay
Word Count :14222
Publication Date :2020-12-11
Series : #
Heat Level :
- Product Code: 978-1-4874-2999-7
David Wright is dying from cancer. He is not expected to see another Christmas. At least that’s what the medical professionals say. Fortunately, Santa begs to differ. After all, modern medicine is nothing more than a best guess. Santa believes anything is possible until you give up.
When Santa tells David’s wife, Joan, that heaven is full and she has to keep her husband alive, she is beside herself. She has no medical skills. How can she save anyone’s life? Set your skepticism aside as Santa embraces a family already mourning their father’s terminal diagnosis and teaches them that a Christmas miracle doesn’t always require heavenly intervention. Sometimes, all it takes is a family with enough love to create their own. As Santa says, a true miracle is when love combines with action to get the desired results. And only humans are capable of that.
Will Santa’s words fall on deaf ears? Or will Team Wright find a way to save their father’s life?
There wasn’t even a single snowflake in the air to brighten the morning. “Seems like snow should be a given during the holidays,” she murmured. “It’s Milwaukee, for God’s sake. It always snows. I need a promise of a new day, a rebirth. Something. Anything.”
There was no response to her musings. Instead, the silence was filled with the persistent beeps and blips of monitors and other machines.
She turned to the body that lay on the narrow hospital bed and sighed. “This will be our last Christmas together, darling,” she whispered. “I don’t know if I can bear it.”
The man she had loved for the past 30 years did not respond. Instead, he slept deeply, his semi-conscious body in peaceful repose, no longer a slave to the pain caused by the cancer that ate away at him. Morphine had become his best friend. It and other drugs were used to keep him in what the doctor called a medically induced coma. That seemed cruel when death was certain. Why not just let him go?
A nurse entered the room and checked his vitals. She turned to Joan and smiled. “I know it’s not much consolation, but his vitals are strong. He doesn’t seem to be in any pain.”
Joan nodded, a single tear escaping from her eye. “I love him, you know. I have since the moment he collided with me on a skating rink when we were sixteen.” Another tear fell and she swiped at it. “Every day with him was a blessing. He was the yin to my yang. The perfect balance. We have had one hell of a life together. Not all good, but blessed. We weathered the bad times and celebrated the good. We had three healthy, strong children.” Another tear fell. “I am so angry that his life is ending this way. That we are not dying together. It’s not fair. In fact, it’s downright cruel. What kind of God does this to people who love each other? No one should have to watch the love of their life die in pain.”
The nurse shook her head, her expression sad. “I don’t have an answer. All I can suggest is that you let the memories of that love sustain you, to help you through this difficult time.” She smiled. “Besides, all is not really lost. It’s almost Christmas, a time for miracles. If anything, hold on to that hope.” She gazed at Joan’s husband. “He may surprise you. God may surprise you. All you have to do is believe. Have a little faith.”
Joan stared at the woman. “You don’t really believe that, do you?”
The nurse chuckled. “I work in Intensive Care, the den of the last resort. People come here expecting to die. I can’t tell you how many have walked out of here, defying all odds. I have one ninety-three-year-old-gentleman who has been in here five times. Each time, it seems his heart is on the verge of giving out. And each time, he has left with a smile on his face. Last time, I asked what his secret is. Do you know what he told me? He said he had faith that God wouldn’t take him until he needed him. And he knew that he wasn’t needed yet.”
Joan swiped at another tear. “How nice to have that kind of faith. To be so at peace with your very existence.” She shook her head. “Not sure how that relates to this, but I need to be prepared for whatever happens. I have to be realistic. I have to be strong for my children and grandchildren.”
The nurse patted her arm. “Honey, the only person you have to be strong for is yourself. Everything else will fall into place.” She nodded toward the bed. “Let that man feel your strength. Let him feel your love. You need to be strong so he can be weak. You need to be strong so he can heal.” She smiled at Joan, then walked away.
Joan swiped at a tear. The nurse had good intentions, but her words were empty. The doctors had already told Joan that David was terminal. That this would be his last Christmas. The fact was, her husband was dying. She walked to her husband’s bed, quietly slipped around the wires and tethers, and lay beside him. She placed her head on his chest. God, how often had she lain with David like this, taking comfort in the strong beat of his heart? Now she snuggled into him and let her mind flow into an exhausted sleep.