Sunday, February 25, 2007

Last Grandpa Update For A While: He's a tough old bird. I had a good talk with his doctor this morning. He's doing much better than anyone anticipated he would be doing. Yesterday he was talking off and on (albeit confused...did a lot of talking about tools and jobs, etc. and no, I don't think there were any of his dead foremen in the room). He drank almost two Boost drinks during the day as well as quite a bit of water. I had them bring him in some soup/jello/icecream for dinner and he ate quite a few little bites of each and enjoyed them. This morning he had a little cream-of-wheat and some yogurt and orange juice. For lunch he had a bit of soup and more jello/icecream...not all that much, but some. The doctor and nurses don't think he should be on "comfort measures" any more so we're starting back up his antibiotics & other medications. They're doing physical therapy twice a day. This AM he balanced sitting by himself for a few minutes.....all without any pain medication. This whole thing is kind of a mental dilemma. I know he doesn't want to stick around...he's said so. I know the next couple of months will be misery for him physically and emotionally as he has to go through rehabilitation. I could have left him on morphine, no food/water and let him pass away which would have been hard, but not exceptionally cruel. However, I felt that would have been me letting him starve to death which I didn't feel right about. If he's going to die, I want it to be his body that does it on it's own. I wanted to give him at least an even chance of surviving...and it looks like his body is taking that chance. Maybe I'm just prolonging his life to live a few more miserable months/years then die a more painful death from cancer. These are tough decisions to make. Anyway, enough of the daily updates. He's getting better by the day. The doctor says his confusion is what he calls post operative dementia which is very common in someone his age and since each person is different, he doesn't know how long it will last. Some moments he's his normal self, others he's off in Neverland talking nonsense or being unintelligible. Any advice on where to go from here is appreciated. He can only stay in the hospital for max 20 days, if that long and he's already been there a week. It terrifies me that he may be put in a care center where he doesn't get good care.


Christa said...

I don't envy you the decisions that you have to make, but I personally feel like you've made the right one this time. We hope he has a speedy recovery!

Cambrie said...

I agree. Never let him starve to death. When he is ready to go, he will go. Just don't take drastic measures to keep him alive. You are doing the right thing. Tough decisions though.
I don't think that you have any other options besides a rehab (care center). Especially while he has dementia. Hopefully he will do some improving (mentally) and that might open a few more options like paying a caregiver or something.