Wednesday, January 18, 2012

A Long, Lonely Day

This one is difficult.   On January 8th, RD slept all day without waking.  This continued on into Monday, the 9th.  No food, no water.  I could not wake him.   Planning to call the doctor on Tuesday morning, I went to check on him and he was wide awake.  After cleaning and bathing, he was lively and energetic all day.  He ate like a horse and drank and drank and drank some more.  Late Tuesday evening he fell.  I called an ambulance because he was complaining of pain in his leg and hip.  Six hours later we found ourselves in a hospital room, not because anything was broken nor had he been injured but because his blood pressure was sky high.  It was to be a 48 observation admission.  At some point early Wednesday morning,  RD fell back into his deep sleep from which he could not be awakened. He stayed in a coma-like event until Thursday afternoon.  He was back into the deep sleep on Friday. There was no way to arouse him from this sleep.  A Home Health Care worker came to the house and panicked when seeing RD.  She called his doctor and described RD's condition, apparently, telling the doctor she didn't think RD would live through the weekend.  This triggered a major assessment of RD in the hospital.  His lab work looked great.  No problems with blood, UA, pulse, etc.  His blood pressure was remaining high so another observation.
RD was furious to find himself in the hospital again. He told me, "I was in a peaceful, happy coma and you made me wake up".  Friday evening, after the second admittance of the week, RD's primary care physician, called me into a tiny space to talk about RD's prognosis and condition.  He explained the signs of end-of-life and felt RD was meeting the criteria. He calmly told me it would be about 1 month.  I'm ashamed of my juvenile response - "You're kidding me!".
I've no doubt I'm in some state of denial.  I don't really believe the physician is right on this one.  What is shocking to them is more routine to me (long periods of sleep without waking). Agonizingly,  I have contacted Hospice and they have made their first visit. Time will reveal her plan soon enough.
Love to all who read this note.
Jo Ann

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