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His Heart Just Exploded!!
Life after Death
Member Name: UKRushbrook
Life after Death
Advantages: Hope of life after death
Disadvantages: Sorrow, grieving, loss, and much more
I am writing this review in this manner because I do believe in life after death. As a true believer in the Lord Jesus Christ, I have hope that there is more to this world than what we see around us. I hope this also helps others with questions.
1995 seemed to be a good year for us as a family. I had a very good job. Bills were being paid with some left over. We lived together with a younger brother who was the life of the party. Yes, it appeared that life would continue on its merry way and we certainly had no thought about what the future would hold. Even if we had done so, we probably would not have believed it.
The first week of November 1995, my brother, John, got up early and left for work before I had a chance to see him. Later that morning about 9:30am, I picked up the phone to give him a quick call. I dialled his mobile number and as it rang the first time, I hung up because I remembered that one of the people in his office (not his manager) had commented to him that John shouldn't be taking personal calls. I was intending to meet up with him for lunch, so thought I would just wait a little bit and then show up and surprise him.
At about 9:45am, the phone rang and I saw that it was his workplace. Great, he noticed my call and decided to call me instead! "Hello, this is Mark. How are you John?"
The voice cleared its throat on the other end, "Hello Mark. Sorry, this is not John. It's Frank, John's supervisor. Hey listen, don't want you to worry, but the paramedics are here in the building and trying to help John. He seems to be having problems with his breathing. They are going to take him to A&E (Emergency), and I will meet you over there!"
At that point, I can assure you that there was NO CONCERN at all for John was healthy. He had been out of the military less than a year, did not drink or do drugs, and ate a fairly healthy diet. "Ok, thanks for the call Frank. See you in just a bit."
With a quick call to my pastor, our parents and the rest of brothers and sisters who were scattered around the world, I told them to keep John in their thoughts and prayers and that as soon as we could get back to the house that I would have John give everybody a call to let them know what happened.
A quick kiss to the wife and off I go in the car to the hospital which was about 15-20 minutes away. Arriving, I parked and walked towards the A&E section. There was only 1 ambulance in the bay and it still had its lights going with the back doors open to the world.
As I walked in, two nurses were speaking about a "John Doe", but the words never even triggered any bells as I announced, "Hello, I am Rev. Mark and I believe my brother has brought in with some health concerns. Can you direct me to where he is at so I can see how he is doing?"
One of the nurses stood and said, "Reverend, if you would like to just come sit over here in the waiting room, the doctor will be with you in just a moment." With that she took me over to a small room where I took a seat wondering what was taking so long.
After what seemed like an eternity, but was in reality only 4-5 minutes, I stood up and walked back out and repeated my request. The nurse replied that if I could just wait, the doctor would be as quick as possible. I nodded my thanks and walked back into the waiting room and closed the door. It was at that point that I began to realize there might be something wrong. The sign on the door had read "FAMILY PRIVATE CONSULTATION ROOM". Having been in a lot of hospitals and A&E's, I knew that there were not too many reasons why I should have a private consultation room.
Just a couple of minutes later, my mind began to whirl as two people walked into the room. One was obviously the doctor with a stethoscope around his neck, but the other one gave the game away. The crosses on the lapel indicated the second person was one of the hospital chaplains. They came into the room and sat one on either side of me before the doctor spoke.
"Reverend, I'm sorry, but we did everything we could. Your brother, John, is gone!"
My worst fears came to fruition as all the pieces of the puzzle fell into place. My mind began to whirl and I simply put my head in my hands and wept. John was probably my best friend. How could he be gone? He was going to have another birthday in just over a month. What happened to rob the life from this young man? It was coming up for Christmas time, how could this be?
The doctor informed me that it appeared that his heart had exploded. An autopsy later confirmed that there was a defect that had caused his heart to fail. It was the same problem that killed the 28 year old Russian ice skater, Sergei, the same month.
I asked to see him and they warned me that there were tubes sticking out of him and his colour would not be what it should be. Having been working in the funeral industry, I knew what to expect so they took me into the room where he lay on the table. I cannot begin to express what went through my mind. Part of me wanted to pound on his chest to hopefully trigger his heart to start again. Part of me was devastated because I could have talked with him one more time on the phone and I let what somebody else think stop me and know he would never hear me again in this life.
Praying to God for guidance and wisdom, I simply took my young brother's hand in mine and said, "Goodbye for now, John. I will see you in the morning!"
Having a personal and vibrant belief in a Creator God as well as a rock-solid belief in the resurrection of the body to eternal life, I was comforted by the fact that the Bible tells me that I would see him again in heaven.
Going back home, my pastor arrived just as I did and walked in to hear me break the news to my wife. The emotions that came forth from each family member as I called them with the tragic news cannot be repeated for it still hurts eleven years later. Plane tickets had to be obtained for everybody on short notice for he had no other family living close except for us.
Soon, they all arrived and so did the day of the funeral. I had the privilege of speaking at John's funeral. It was not easy as we faced friends and family and tried to speak of all that John meant to us, but most importantly what the Lord Jesus Christ meant to John.
During the coming months, we all learned more on how to cope with the death of a loved one, but there were some difficult lessons that had to be learned. I hope some of these may help others as well.
1. Many well-meaing people will say things in a vain attempt to comfort you without realizing they are often only making things more difficult. A person who has not experienced a close loss cannot possibly understand. Even if they have, it is not just like your loss and the circumstances are so different, that there can be no comparison between the two.
2. Many will say things like, "Oh, you will get over it soon." Or, "Take heart, life will get back to normal before long!" Life does NOT get back to normal (whatever that is)! We must realize that while death is part of what we must experience in life, when it intrudes, nothing is ever normal again. You must adjust to a new "normality" for lack of a better word.
3. Realize that while grieving is fine, and over time, while the pain and heartache will dull, it will never go away completely. It is another emotion just like love that must be assimilated into the human soul.
4. Seek guidance from somebody who is trained to deal in grief counseling if you are struggling to move forward. For some this is maybe a doctor, it may just be a close friend, or it may be a pastor/minister/rabbi/etc.
5. Realize that some will struggle to meet up with you again not because they don't want to see you, but because they are not sure what to say. Do they speak of your loss or ignore it? When they do come, you may also be in a quandry. Do I speak about my loved one? What if they don't want to hear about it? So realize that it is good to speak about your loss and is very helpful.
6. Realize that all the "Why?" questions will never be fully answered. However, through your experiences you can grow through it and even find yourself in a club that nobody ever wants to be part of - The Loss of a Loved One Club!"
In conclusion, through these trying and terrible experiences it is possible to use this to help bring comfort to others. I have read some of the other reviews on this subject and it is good to know that there are others who have been able to open up their hearts and reveal a human side that shows compassion, empathy, and care for something outside of themselves.
******** Thanks for reading this long review! Feel free to leave any comments.
******** Dedicated to the memory of my loving brother, John, who passed from this life at the young age of 22!!
Summary: To grief is part of human life.