Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Fact or fiction: The pleading eyes

Whenever I closed my eyes, I saw my sister’s. They invaded my dreams like termites, feeding on my peace and leaving sleep-deprived nights in their wake. It got so that I hated to close my eyes because I would see hers – those beautiful cocoa eyes begging me, pleading with me, to take her home.

 But I couldn’t take her home. Death was near and there was no beating Death.

So I sat in her hospital room and watched her die.

Fact or fiction? Read on to find out. 

This is true. I lost my older sister to lung cancer. When the nurses moved her from the intensive care unit to a room on the fourth floor, her eyes opened briefly. I will never forget what I saw in her eyes that day. She was afraid. Angry. Desperate. She wanted to go home. She didn’t want to leave her two young sons, who had lost their father (her husband) less than two months before. Her eyes were only opened seconds, but they spoke volumes.

I incorporated this scene into my novel, Ella’s Rain. 

Here’s an excerpt.

Maddie and Ella followed as they wheeled Grandma’s bed through the hospital corridors to the elevator and down to the fourth floor. Just as they turned Grandma’s bed to go into the room, she opened her eyes. Grandma’s beautiful ocean blue eyes said what she couldn’t. They begged for mercy and pleaded for help, help that Ella was unable to give. It lasted only a few seconds, but to Ella it seemed like a lifetime. Grandma closed her eyes and it was the last time Ella saw them open.

Ella tried to forget Grandma’s eyes, but they came back in the stillness of the night when Ella wasn’t quite asleep but wasn’t quite awake. Ella would fingertip kiss Grandma’s urn and check to make sure the locket was under her pillow and close her eyes waiting for sleep to quiet her troubled soul. But the eyes came first. No matter how hard Ella tried to think happy thoughts, the eyes came first. And Ella couldn’t bear it if Maddie got sick and she saw those pleading eyes again.

Other fact or fiction posts: 


  1. Just lovely... So vulnerable and sincere.

  2. Agree... Christi's comment is spot on. I hope Piper gets to read your books soon!

  3. Thanks Christi and Cindi. Totally appreciate the comments. Hope you visit again soon!