Thursday, November 03, 2011


My father passed away a year and a half ago. My grandmother passed away a couple of weeks ago. Now, my mother is apparently in her last days. She has been on dialysis for years, has low blood levels, can no longer walk, and is now confined to a bed (under a restraint order) lest she should try to get out and collapse. She has a mass of fluid on her lungs that might be cancer, but the doctors fear that she would not survive the invasive cancer testing procedure.

She yells out frequently, and there is a suspicion that the drugs are contributing to this behaviour. She asks to be let out of there and howls in pain. So, the doctors are reducing her drugs: no more anti-depressants, no more meds for high cholesterol. But, she is on Oxycontin and antibiotics and a medicated inhaler.

The doctors believe she is dying and now there is a DNR order. It's odd, because she came to my grandmother's (her mother's) funeral recently, though it was nearly impossible to get her in and out of the vehicle. Her legs are useless and she screamed with pain, complaining that she was being abandoned, even as three of us were trying to stuff her into a mini van.

I know that she is lonely in that nursing home. When my dad passed, she didn't really react, but he was someone she knew for years--most of her life, in fact--and I think that had an effect. And now, her mother is gone and, although she has always claimed to have hated her mother, she must miss her. After all, she lived with her for years and years until she was admitted to a nursing home, years before her mother met the same fate. It seems like her mother was her only friend.

She mumbles nonsense in between asking to be set free from the nursing home. Perhaps she has given up? On the other hand, she may hang on for years. You never really know, I guess, but at present, it seems grim.

1 comment:

mister.anchovy said...

Very sorry to hear this sad news