Sunday, May 23, 2010

A month later

So much has happened, I'm not sure I can even remember.

Ryan moved here, fell in love, broke up, got a job, may have a second job (everyone does here) and has charmed almost every female in the nursing home. And his cat died the day before he left California.

Mom got better, and then got worse. So much so that we spent a day walking up and down the halls, crying, and Ryan sent a text message to Brett telling him he better come quick if he wanted to see Gram. We agreed to move Mom into hospice and try to make her stop hurting. The doctor needs to write the order for hospice so we went to see him, and I told him I just wanted her to not hurt any more. He sat and thought and said he wanted to try one more thing. We went up to the emergency room where he shot her toe with lidocaine, and she stopped moaning, looked up at him and told him "You did good." He was able to mess with the toe and determine that there was no flesh under the scab, you could see bone that was deteriorating. He wrapped the toe in a lidocaine transdermal patch and that has made a big difference. Her foot doesn't hurt anymore (if the nurses put the patch on right). He says that amputation is the answer but doesn't know if anyone will do it as the infection is still there (although it is a different bug every time.)

In the meantime, Brett is on the way home and when he gets here, she isn't on death's door anymore. He was here for the best day of all, April 30, which was Marian's birthday, so Marvin took me and the boys to Pizza Hut for dinner. Mom was chatty, and happy and doing well. Then she started to hurt again. Once the pain in the toe was gone, her knee really hurt her. By now she wasn't talking to me or even eating if I was helping. She would only eat if Ryan fed her. (She really lost the use of her hands between the stroke and the arthritis.)

Then my nieces, Shel and Trish, came last week. A good time was had by all some of the time. Shel can make Mom giggle under any circumstance and she did. Trish is a hospice director and we had a lot of long talks about what that really means. Trish looked at her records, made some recommendations and assured me that hospice is a good thing. It was good to see the girls, and to have someone here who knows stuff.

We have gotten into the routine of pain pills and bio-freeze on the knees but she has stopped eating enough to survive, so I will request the doctor to move her into hospice again. He was out of town last week so I will have to talk to him this week.

Life is what happens to you while you are making plans


  1. I'm glad you were able to speak with someone like Trish so that you are not alone when facing these decisions. Although your mom may not have wanted you to help her eat, and although it seems like she may not appreciate what you do for her, she is lucky to have you there.

  2. So bittersweet. I'm thinking about you, lady.