1. Grandaughter 1

    Grandaughter 1 Registered User

    Jan 17, 2006
    Hello all,

    Apologies for not posting recently but just haven't been able to face it (does that sound rude?)

    My Grandad is now a permanent care home resident after breaking his hip there whilst on respite. When he was in hospital with a broken hip we got the call at midnight to ask if they could put "Do not resusciate" on his notes as they didn't expect him to survive. He then got a chest infection too. The family all paid a vigil and said their goodbyes, we got grilled by the nursing staff that it was ok for "DNR" to be on his notes etc. However, Grandad got over the infections etc and was discharged!

    Now many many weeks later we are back to the same again. Home called to say Grandad has got a chest infection and he is refusing to take his anti-biotics. Dr was called out and we had the option of him going to hospital or staying at the home and be given Morphine to ease the pain.

    We decided to leave him at the home rather than move him again so we have been told to expect the worst (again)

    Half of me can't help thinking that he will pull through again and the other half is thinking "is this it"??

    Have any TP members had to do several "goodbyes" as this is pretty hard to deal with.
  2. Tina

    Tina Registered User

    May 19, 2006
    Dear Grandaughter 1

    so sorry you're going through these times, and your grandad too. We had hte same story with my grandad twice. He was never diagnosed with AD or VD, but he was in a home (a great one!) and confused some of the time, lucid many other times. He did manage to confound docs and all of us twice after chest infections and rallied. He never fully recovered but he did hang on for another 18 months after the last serious illness before he died peacefully and quickly from pneumonia earlier this year.

    With my aunt it was a similar story last year. Massive brain haemorrhage after multi-infarct VD, in hospital. Coma first, only on drip for fluids, not expected to last long. At some point taken off drip. Family came to say goodbyes. Then, three days after, strong reactions to tests docs carried out, put back on drip. She never recovered, she never spoke again, she was paralysed down the right side, doubly incontinent and asleep most of the time, but by god, she fought. She had a feeding tube inserted at some point, she reacted to voices around her, she returned the pressure if you held her hand or stroked her...

    I can't really offer any advice, only sympathise...it's a roller coaster, you always worry and are on tenter hooks, never knowing what to expect. Torn between wanting relief for your loved one and terrified of losing them and not wanting to let go...

    Thinking of you and your grandad and your family at what must be a difficult time for all of you.

  3. blue sea

    blue sea Registered User

    Aug 24, 2005
    It is hard and you do get to the point whre you almost start to believe they aren't going to die at all as they struggle through each crisis! I only had to cope with that sort of situation for a month but I remember how dreadful it was. Part of you wants the person to be released from their suffering by death, part of you can't bear the though of the finality of the parting. You can only do your best to get through each day. Decisions like whether to take your children are very hard but you can only do what you feel is the best. There are no right and wrongs, but be confident that a decision made out of love will always be the best you can do.
    Thinking of you.
    Blue sea
  4. Cate

    Cate Registered User

    Jul 2, 2006
    Newport, Gwent
    Hi Granddaughter

    A doctor said to me once when mum was initially diagnosed with AD, that this is the long goodbye, how right he was, little by little mentally mum is slipping away from me.

    Just over two weeks ago I had a call from the NH to tell me mum had been transferred by ambulance to A & E. Mum had a massive heart attack, had fluid on the lungs, and an internal bleed.

    On my arrival the doctor asked me about DNR and advised me to contact anyone who I thought would want to say goodbye, she didn’t think mum would survive more than a couple of hours. She fought bless her, not only the effects of the fluid and heart attack, but the staff too, every step of the way, and I know I shouldn’t say this, but I couldn’t help thinking while she is giving them hell, she’s still with us and fighting.

    I am thrilled to say this time she won. She is back in the NH where she is so wonderfully looked after, (sadly the Ward were useless, but that’s another story).

    Of course we all feel we are living with a time bomb with the internal bleed, which they could not treat, but for now we have mum back, still giving us all hell, and I now love every minute of it.

    Take everyday as it comes.

    Thinking of you.

  5. Lila13

    Lila13 Registered User

    Feb 24, 2006
    My mother and I used to recite "Look thy last on all things lovely every hour", and she used to sing "Everytime we say goodbye I die a little".

    I wonder which is worse, too many goodbyes or none at all?

    We want, almost expect, things to be predictable, that would make us feel safe, but the fact is that lots of people die without warning and lots of people die alone (illness or accident), and whatever we do to try to prevent this, there will always be those unknowns.
  6. Grandaughter 1

    Grandaughter 1 Registered User

    Jan 17, 2006
    That is so true. My Grandad hasn't been my Grandad for well over a year. He hasn't been himself for at least 4 years.

    The plus side is that as a family we can prepare but on the negative this is so torturous (sp) just wondering and waiting.

    Louise x

    PS Grandads condition is much the same today apart from the fact the Morphine has taken the pain away.
  7. DeborahBlythe

    DeborahBlythe Registered User

    Dec 1, 2006
    Cate, so glad your mum is defying all the predictions. Mine is too. Every time I leave her I make sure I give her the biggest hug in case it's the last one I'm able to do. (We were told last March(2006) that she only had a few months, if not weeks, to live. Much they knew!) I read posts on TP which urge that 'letting your loved one go' is a fine and selfless thing to do, but I for one feel very confused about this. If I stay away from my mum and let nature take its course, then I'd feel derelict. And anyway, when I DO stay away for a day or two, I'm amazed to return to find my mum sitting up and looking not too bad for 92. I conclude that there is something going on that actually doesn't depend entirely on me, and that's my mum's own fighting spirit. And if she is game for a fight, then so am I! ( And actually, even if she isn't game, I'm going to do my damnedest to make sure she is as comfortable as possible.)

    What I am trying to say is that my mother doesn't seem ready to go, and painful though these weeks and months may be, she still takes some pleasures in her days. The day will surely come when her powers desert her, I know that, but until they do, I try to enjoy what time is left and make it as pleasant as possible for her. As you rightly say, take each day as it comes, and thank your God, (or your lucky stars) for every blessing you find in it.

    Much love

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