I signed a “do not resuscitate” document when Mama transferred from private to the public long-term care facility. It was one of several documents about the care of and when death occurs plans in a government-run operation. Many of the documents were the same as the private facility. Of course, the cost is one-third, less care workers, the intent is there, but… and the food is so bland or disgusting, words fail me. I know a cliche. Better a cliche than a rant. Really, your ears would burn.
Summer colds arrived last week. Mom is not well.
Mom has a chest cold, as do four or five more residents. She is wheezing. Her lungs sound full of fluid or infection or both. I was not happy with the nurse’s response to my question.
Me: “What are you giving Mom for the cough?” Nurse: “Just Tylenol to make her comfortable.”
Now, you know, my hackles rose a bit at that response, but, I contained myself.
Me: “She is wheezing and appears to be full of fluid, are you giving her anything for that?” Nurse: “I checked her last night, her chest was fine last night.”
Me: “Well, she is full of fluid and what is going to be done about it?” Nurse: ” I will check her as soon as I am finished here.”
Right and I am the Queen of England. I have thought about the lack of response and think the documents I signed hold the clue why no further medical care other than making her comfortable. I know I checked and signed the box not to resuscitate, but, that was if Mom had a heart attack or a stroke and to make her comfortable if that occurred. Now, a cold is different, right? Geri, cousin/sister, said, “Where is the line?”
WHERE is the line?
Does the line start at bladder infections are okay to treat and colds are not? I know I checked the box to keep her comfortable, but, a cold. There must be some mistake. I believe it is necessary to clarify a few points: where is the line before treatment is not administered and who decided where the line was.
Tomorrow morning I will be at the desk with my copies of the paperwork to discuss the “line” and the expected action. Apparently there is a lung infection going around, so…to battle I go.
Interesting isn’t it, I struggled with being the main caregiver, the warrior daughter with all the responsiblity of reversed roles, to finally accept others will not and cannot help, to let go of the anger, hurt, and frustration, to just accept this time in our lives, to be there, make it right, comfortable, and just love Mom. Perhaps, now is the beginning of the final end.
Recently, someone said the reason they are still here is because we still have a something to learn. Alright, one more life lesson. How much is this going to hurt?
Stay safe and loved.