Friday, November 18, 2011

At Death's Door

Warning and I'm sorry but you may not want to read the following because it is in no way light reading.

The thing that we have been dreading for months is happening.  QueenMaker's mom is in the hospital with end stage COPD.  I cannot convey the feeling adequately, but I'll try.  This sucks.

It took us by surprise, especially her.  We didn't realize that the final drop would be so great.  We expected it to be more gradual.  But one day she is coping well, the next day she hits the wall.  I decided to stay for many overnight stays. Reality hit me hard.  I thought I could take care of her and her needs but realized that it would take every last ounce of strength I had emotionally and physically to take care of her.

The other shock - the pain.  She thought that she would be just gasping for air in the end and they would quietly manage her symptoms and she would quietly slip away.  She did not expect the pain, the agony she would feel.  I sat with her, comforted her, talked her down from the panic attacks, cradled her like a child, calling her my baby girl.

The fall she experienced the other day sent her to the hospital. The pain became tenfold and she was denied her meds until they checked for broken bones. Finally the medication she so desperately wanted and begged for finally came giving her the relief.  This was so hard on her and hard to watch.

I cannot thank the hospice nurses enough.  They came to her home, helping to guide her, support her, and treated her with such kindness and love.  The hospital hospice nurses here are beautiful to me. They treat my mother in law as though she was an angel and that they are the blessed ones to have her among them.  Bless them indeed.

So here we sit waiting.  Hoping her eyes will open so we can say good-bye.  Waiting for the inevitable.   Waiting for her pain to end.  

And it sucks.
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