Friday, September 7, 2007

This morning Jackie and I met with the Hospice Doctor, who told us that the St Joseph doctor made the right call in suggesting no additional dialysis and Hospice for Aunt Tod. He says she will probably pass away within the next four or five days.

Before he arrived in the room this morning, Aunt Tod was awake; her eyes were open and she was "getting" everything we said, although she can’t talk following the stroke she had Tuesday night. We were able to tell her the series of events that led us to where we are now, and she did not seem at all upset by the decisions that have been made. That’s a huge relief. Knowing what a fighter she is and has been, it was taking a leap of faith to believe she would understand that we are acting in what we believe are her best interests based on the doctor’s recommendations. Further dialysis would be futile and her heart is so weak that further "insults" to her body (and dialysis is an "insult" – although often necessary to keep people alive) might kill her outright or give her a heart attack. Our prayer is that she will pass peacefully, not via cardiac arrest.

At lunch time I drove to Maple Creek, where she was a resident for five months, and retrieved her favorite music CD (Cristy Lane’s Greatest Hits). The moment I turned it on for her at Hospice, her eyes came open and she lifted her head off the bed. She knows I was there and that I brought it. I promised her I’ll be back immediately after work.

I also brought her a soft, small, colorful blanket someone bought for her, and removed her purse and files from her room at Maple Creek, as well as the mail that has been accumulating in the mailbox at the facility, for safe keeping and handling. Tomorrow Jackie and I will go there briefly to take out some additional items and locate her will. I need to retrieve several fans I let her use and lots of music CDs as well that I don’t think she ever even tried out because she loves the Cristy Lane CD so much. (I sent it to her for Christmas two years ago and she told me she played it almost non-stop.)

The rest of her belongings will sit there until her passing and we find out what she wants done with everything…

She’s less "well" hour to hour. I notice a difference in her between ten and now. Not a major difference, but a difference. She’s less responsive to words. The music gave her a boost, though! It was quite startling to see how quickly she came from a light slumber to wide awake. I know she was tickled and that tickled me!

"One day at a time, sweet Jesus…" That was the first song that played. She loves it.
So do I.

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This would have been De’s and Carolyn’s 62nd wedding anniversary, had they both lived to see it.

Aunt Tod and John Fremault were married 63 years. That’s more than a lifetime from where I sit at age 56! WOW!

Some marriages are just meant to last "til death us do part." That was certainly the case with these two couples!

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