Felicitas Livaudais, MD

Accompanying artwork: Reid Psaltis

Perm J 2018;22:15-254 [Full Citation]

E-pub: 10/01/2018

This is a story and illustration from the upcoming book 100 Little Stories of Big Moments published by The Permanente Press.

Most of the stories and poems were written by clinicians in 15 minutes in writing workshops about meaningful moments in their work and life of practicing medicine. Professional artists were asked to create a visual representation of the story.

As an intern at Charity Hospital, I was responsible for night call duties. There was a woman on our service with cancer. She was not expected to live long, so she and her daughter decided to have Do Not Resuscitate orders. One night the patient went into agonal breaths. They called me, the intern, so I sat with her daughter as she listened to her mother’s raspy breaths until they became less, more quiet, then nothing.

They held hands the whole time. Even when I pronounced the mother dead and finished my work, her daughter was still there by her bedside. It was dark and silent. The bond between the two would stay even though one body had expired. I expressed my condolence and the daughter gave me a half smile. When I die, I hope someone who loves me will sit next to me and hold my hand too.


How to Cite this Article

Livaudais F. DNR. Perm J 2018;22:15-254. DOI: https://doi.org/10.7812/TPP/15-254

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