We knew this was coming. It just seemed a long way off, or perhaps even impossible. You just don’t think about your parents becoming frail – especially your Daddy, I think.
Most of you know that Dad has been back in the hospital with bronchitis and congestive heart failure complications. Dr. S said he wants to make sure Daddy is stable – his breathing is still somewhat difficult, but he should go home tomorrow (Saturday). He was supposed to go home today, but he’s not ready. Daddy still has more “rattle” in his chest than Dr. S wants, so more sitting in the chair and walking today. Dr. S wants Dad to sit in the chair for 2 hours at a time, twice today and walk with the therapist.
We have been advised that it is time to call in Hospice care, because the congestive heart failure (CHF) issues are intensifying faster than they can be treated. Symptoms come, but never go away completely before the next round begins, so each time he is much worse. He is growing weaker because he has no appetite, he is rapidly losing weight, and he is showing signs of failure to thrive. There is no way to speculate how quickly the disease will progress. He may maintain this status for awhile before we see more decline.
One thing we have tried to make sure everyone knows is that this doesn’t necessarily mean “the end is here”. Dad has had appetite ups and downs since the first of the year, and this may well continue. His digression may well be slow – we just don’t know.
I think we all have a bit of a cloud hanging over our heads, though. As I said before, we knew in a general sort of way that this would come, but truly, there was always this thought in the back of our heads that our greater than life Daddy would escape it.
To complicate matters a bit, I am also sick. I’m guessing it’s just allergies gone bad, but I am feeling rotten. Jeanne is at the hospital with Daddy – she stayed last night and today, and may have to stay tonight. We thought Daddy was coming home today, but since he’s not, she may have to stay again. I don’t think I need to be too close to Daddy right now, although I’m not sure I have anything contagious. I’d just hate to make things worse.
I’m going back to bed now. I’d appreciate your prayers for my family, and for Daddy. I am specifically praying that Daddy will be comfortable, and will not experience fear. Please pray with us!
God bless your day!