It was really hard to say goodbye to my grandfather last week.
He was in the hospital and then a rehab center the whole time I was there because he fell a couple of days before that, but I think I spent as much quality time (or more) than I would have if he was home and I stayed by him.
We spent over an hour every afternoon at the hospital and then rehab center, and I tried to take pictures and videos of things he said. I missed a lot on video, but that's because I was more focused on listening and being there than turning on the camera.
When I had to leave him, maybe for the very last time, I gave him a hug and then I said "I love you" as I left the room. His hearing is impaired and he did not hear me. My aunt urged me to go back in and say it again. I went in right as he asked me to move the wheelchair closer to his bed, and then as I stood up I said louder "I love you!" and he said "I love you, too!"
It was as if he is now both my grandmother and him, in my need to spend quality time and to say goodbye, in the feeling of closeness. I feel that most years he was the silent one when my grandmother cried as I left, but now I felt all my goodbyeness was aimed at him, he contained both him and my dear grandmother, and I had a hard time saying goodbye.