Monday, November 30, 2009

Ups and Downs

Well I am starting to realize that things may be happening more quickly with Dad than I first thought. I hope we will be able to enjoy Christmas together.

I received a call from him around 10 til 1 saying he wasn't feeling well and asking if I would come over. I was planning on going over anyway and collected my things and the new 8x10 photo of Dad and Mum and went on my way. I am very thankful that I am only two minutes away from his home. Dad was confused and not feeling well when I arrived. I sat with him and tried to assess the situation. I called my brother to no avail. I was on my own. Dad seemed winded but not like he was when we called 911 a few weeks ago. I knew that the hospice nurse was due by 2pm. Dad took his breathing treatment...the first of the day I seemed he may have missed the first two but I am not completely sure. Anyway it quickly became clear that we were going to have to use some of the meds in the comfort box that has been in the fridge since we started this hospice journey. I was very nervous, afraid even to break out these meds. I tried my brother again and when I couldn't reach him I called hospice. After fifteen or so minutes I was able to speak with the nurse manager (?) and she talked me through the first dose of morphine. I was shaking and ended up spilling a little on my fingers. I guess in the back of my mind I was holding on to an irrational fear that if I gave him the morphine he would die. After giving him the meds he seemed a little bit better and I sat with him and once again read from the True Compass. Thank goodness for that book. It seems to have a calming, almost meditative effect on both Dad and me. At about 2pm D our nurse arrived. She asked some questions and praised me for knowing what to do. She watched as I administered the second 5mg of liquid morphine. She said I was perfect. By that time my brother and sil came upstairs to find out what was going on. We ended up giving dad some ativan on top of the morphine and by 2:45 he was much better. Oxygen was ordered and D assured us that she would have the nurse on call, L give us a ring tomorrow to see how Dad is doing. D said we should probably start thinking about a plan for when we need more coverage to keep Dad safe. So let the planning begin.

I ended up staying with Dad for quite a while. We read more of the Kennedy book and he seemed much better. The oxygen was delivered and we were instructed on how to operate the machine and keep everyone safe when the machine was operating. After that lesson my brother and sil left and I was about to go too when Dad made a comment about there being a mass exodus. So I sat for a bit longer. I asked him if he wanted me to read a little more of our book and he said "No, just sit there so I can look at you." And that is what I did.

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