My dad's scalp, doing its best impression of a baseball.
He was in bad shape when we finally got to him, but we did have one huge consolation. You see, my dad is a famous physician in his specialty. I've always thought of him as sort of a rock star among doctors -- he would travel all over the world to work or teach at any medical organization that invited him. This included the very hospital he'd been taken to. And that's why we knew he would be well cared for. After all, you don't let the Mick Jagger of your field die on your watch.
The Mick Jagger comparison is 1,000 times better than calling my father
the Madonna of Physical Medicine.
Still, the doctors were baffled. Unlike a stroke, which is caused by a blood clot, bleeding in the brain usually occurs only after a blow to the head. Well, my dad's skull showed no signs of blunt trauma, so the cause of the hemorrhage was -- and still is -- a total mystery. And, due to its severity, we had to face the prospect that he might never wake up.
On our second night in Taiwan, our pessimism hit its peak. Suddenly, my sister and I were sure he wasn't going to pull out of his coma, and we started lamenting that we never got a chance to say goodbye. At this point, he'd been unconscious for five days, and all we wanted was to say a few last words to him.