Friday, December 30, 2011

Deteriorating . . .

Dad's condition is deteriorating.

It's amazing how quickly it can happen.  He had surgery on the 23rd.  I was with him after surgery, when he woke up and spent some time with him on the 24th, last Saturday, too.  All the kids saw him.  He was awake and alert.  Talkative.  Joking.  He wasn't hurting.  He looked great.  G.R.E.A.T.   When we were getting ready to leave, he said to Big, "Bye-bye, Sweetie . . . " as he waved from the bed.  Then to Middle, "Bye-bye, Sweetie . . . " as he waved again from the bed.  MOTH stepped in and joked with him, "don't you call me Sweetie."  And they shook hands and dad said, "Bye-bye, Sweetie . . . " to MOTH.  Everyone laughed and we left on a real high note.

And on Monday, something happened.

And whatever that something was continued on Tuesday.

And Wednesday.

And Thursday.

Today, he can hardly lift his head and is struggling to keep his eyes open.  It was an overwhelming victory today that he opened his eyes and said my name.  I fed him lunch.  No more than a 1/4 cup of chicken broth and a couple of cubes of orange jello.  He choked a few times.  He struggled to drink through a straw.  And was so weak.  His face is drawn, cheeks sunken, eyes sagging.  He is in and out, back and forth between parallel worlds.  When he's out, he's gone . . . far, far away.  He can't be roused.  When he's here, he's barely here . . . holding on by a thread that is sputtered with coughing, heaving breathing and is punctuated with high blood pressure and intermittent pain.  

I did nursing care today, because that's my niche.  It's where I feel comfortable.  So, I fed him.  And I washed his hands.  I took his old band aids off.  I combed his hair.  It parts on the left.  It always has, but the pillow had it smunched up and going crazy ape right.  I fixed that.  I shaved his face for him.  He hasn't had a scruffy face, lip or neck in the 38 years I've known him or the 30 years I've taken notice.  So I shaved his face, and washed it.  And then I sat.  We sat.  We sat for a long time today.


Disney Redhead said...

I'm so sorry to hear he's not doing well. I'll be thinking of you. I don't know if you're religious or not, but I'll say a prayer for him and your family anyway.

AZ Girl said...

My heart is heavy for you. I will send positive thoughts and warm wishes to you and the family. Know that I am just a phone call away if you need anything.

Heather said...

I'm so sorry, Elle. We'll be keeping you and your family in our thoughts.

Winter said...

I'm sorry. It isn't easy to see our parents as less than superhuman...ever. It doesn't matter how old they are or what we "know" about their health. They are and always will be our first glimpse into things that seem amazing. They are our rock, our constant. It's just hard. I'm sorry you're going through this. I'll be praying for God's comfort and strength for you.

Homestead said...

Praying to the Maries for you.