Thursday, August 7, 2008

Here We Go Again

Dad is doing worse tonight. One reason is probably that he is still on morphine, which ought never to be used on the elderly unless they are in extremis. My pleas to get him off it are thus far to no avail. (He needs the morphine, I'm told, because he is in pain again. The pain, this time, is from constipation. The constipation is caused by the morphine! Am I in the Twilight Zone, or Through the Looking Glass?)

Meanwhile, Mom tripped over a cord in his room this evening. She's is in no danger, but is pretty badly bunged up. Wendy has taken her to one of those private emergency clinics, where they are right now, and is to call me when they get back.

Wendy is also flying out at the crack of dawn for her long-awaited reunion with her husband, after a six-year separation.

So that means I'll be heading up there in the morning, grateful for the opportunity to take care of Mom -- and Dad, insofar as I can.

12 comments:

Tony-Allen said...

What is it that exactly happened to your mother? Did she break some bones?

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Don't think so, not sure yet. Wendy hasn't called. She says Mom has a big blue egg on her head, another injury on her arm, a black eye...will know more after they get home from the doctor.

Elizabeth said...

Anastasia,
why on earth are they treating constipation with Morphine ?
That is a new one to me !

The ultimate cure for constipation is obviously to encourage the bowel to evacuate the offending blockage, not simply treat the pain and do nothing else !

Give laxatives, use an enemea, if is well enough to tolerate solid food, give high fibre food, but Morphine ?
The mind boggles........

The place doesn't inspire me with confidence.....

How is your Mom doing ?

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

From Wendy:

Dad is slipping back the other direction again. He has a lot of pain, and sleeps a lot from the pain killers they give him. Tonight Mom tripped over a cord in his room and fell. We just got back from the ER where they did a CAT scan for the horrible purple lump on her forehead (no problem), an xray on her badly swollen knee (no problem), xrays on her gashed hand (nothing broken, no foreign objects in the wound) and stitched her palm back together. She is sore, and will be more so when she wakes up, I'm sure, but otherwise unbroken.

Michelle Melania said...

When it rains it pours, it seems. Prayers for your father and mother! I am sorry that his healing process is becoming so frustrating- it must be so hard to watch these treatments without being allowed to interfere.

I hope your mother heals well.

anonymous god-blogger said...

Your family is really going through water and fire!

I'm glad your mom's infrastructure is not seriously damaged, and I hope for good healing and comfort for her injuries.

My prayers are with your dad and all of you...

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Thanks to everyone.

Michelle Melania, it's more like NON-treatment. That's what's killing me. And him.

DebD said...

prayers for you all at this very difficult time.

Prayers for Wendy and her husband during this reconciliation period.

Mairs said...

Anastasia, these posts about your dad's death have given me much fuel for thought. I have often wondered how to approach the question "Do you have a living will?" I just avoided it like the plague. Now I think I understand how to engage this culture even in death but I am curious how others would respond - particularly to the idea of "heroic measures"....

I hope opening this discussion doesn't wound you further at this time because please be assured that this has had a radical effect on my thinking reading your posts over the past couple of weeks. Your dad's dimentia and dying journey and your reflections on it have had a profound effect deep in my soul - it has not been vain at least for one sinner out there in Blogland.

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Mary Joy,

Thank you for letting me know all this has had this effect on you. That is extremely comforting to me! NO, such a discussion will not wound me at all! Far from it, any good that can come out of this situation will be cause for rejoicing.

Here in Virginia, a living will form is tricky. That is, there is a box you can check off it you do NOT want "heroic measures." But if you do that, anything and everything is likely to be interpreted as an heroic measure. If you DO want some measures taken to keep you alive, you have to write them in by hand.

I wrote in that I do NOT want to be the victim of "terminal dehydration," which in my experience is a very common way of hastening the deaths of the elderly: you just remove the IV and stop trying to get them to drink anything. I also wrote in that I do not want to die of starvation. Feed me, please, for as long as my body can take the food. AND, I wrote in, no need to hook me up to a heart-lung machine, but do keep that oxygen thingy up my nose so I don't suffocate to death if I don't have to.

Or you can assign your medical power of attorney to someone you trust. That is what my father did.

Mairs said...

Yes, that is exactly the conclusion to which I've come but wasn't sure how to outline the various parameters. Thanks!

I referred a friend to these posts whose sister is dying a long slow death from Lou Gehrig's Disease. I know she can glean a lot from this discussion as well.

By the way, take a look at my Momilies blog - I think you'll enjoy the latest posts for a change of pace!

Anastasia Theodoridis said...

Mary Joy,

Heh-heh -- chickens! Fresh eggs. Maybe more chicks in the Spring. Maybe even fresh meat??

I so enjoy BOTH of your blogs!