Dad’s concerns

When I got to Dad’s house this morning, he was having some problems. He said that he felt weaker than he has before and he was feeling dizzy. He said that if he’s going down this rapidly, he doesn’t think he has long to live.

He had a nurse’s aide come in before lunch to bathe him and wash his hair. I went to the living room while that was happening, but before the aide left, she told me privately that Dad had asked her how long she thought he was going to live, and she said, “Just as long as the good Lord wants you to!” She told me that they can’t say how long it will be until they see certain signs.

I was beginning to get my migraine back, so I started fixing myself something to eat a little early. While I was eating at the dining room table, Elaine went into the kitchen to fix their lunch, and when she went into the family room to get Dad for lunch, he wasn’t there. He had gotten up with his walker and toddled off to the bathroom. Not bad for a man who thinks he’s dying, but he could also fall and injure himself worse than he already is. Not good!

After lunch, Steve the Nurse came to visit. I told him what Dad had told me this morning, so he asked Dad and Elaine questions about how Dad is eating, whether he has been drinking, and how much time he sleeps during the day. Then he took Dad’s vitals which still seem to be in the normal range, and his conclusion was that Dad isn’t quite ready for the death bed. Yes, Dad is getting weaker, but that might also ebb and flow. Steve said that it might be good to have the wheelchair handy for days when Dad is feeling light-headed and weak, but the other signs to watch for will be loss of appetite, no thirst, and sleeping most of the day. Until then, it’s hard to predict how long he might last.

The other thing Dad really wants to do is get rid of his neck brace. Dad has threatened to take it off himself. Elaine has called the neurology office twice to see if they have the results of his CAT scan from the hospital, but they said they’ll call when they’re ready. Steve said that’s ridiculous. He said that if they haven’t called Elaine back by Monday or Tuesday, let him know and he’ll call them. He said sometimes they will answer a nurse more promptly than they will a regular person. There’s something about that that doesn’t seem right!

After the hospice people were gone, Elaine went to the store, and then because it was a beautiful day out, I suggested she take a walk. By the time she got back from that, all I wanted was to get back to Mom’s house and put my migraine to bed. Mom gave me one of her prescription migraine pills which she said usually works quickly for her. She was surprised at how long it took before I was able to leave my dark room, but even then, I could tell the headache was still there in the background. We had dinner and played a game of Scrabble (which she won), and then we called it a night.

I called Mark before starting to write this. He had a pretty good day even though it rained all day in Tucson. Someone had dumped 3 bags of DVDs in the dumpster behind the church and he said some of them were still in their wrappers. He went through them and picked out the ones he wanted and has been watching them. Also, he went to a class tonight for people who want to be armed security. He has been getting all the training he can since hearing about the church shooting in Texas a while back. He has been voluntarily providing security for our church, especially considering that a number of years ago, our church was torched and that’s why they have RV spaces behind the church. Having people living behind the church, especially at night, is beneficial to the church as well as to us.

Speaking of Mark, he said that the medication I’ve been waiting for the longest finally arrived there and he sent it overnight air to here. Carelon may redeem itself yet if they send the prescription I’m running low on soon!

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