Friday, May 02, 2014


My mother is dying.

Someday we all will die - that is a fact. In my line of work I see people actively dying often enough, plus I deal with enough situations where efforts to resuscitate someone who is clinically dead is called for.  Sometimes we get them back. Most times we don't. And I suspect this will not be one of those times.

We've been watching her decline for some time. Between suffering from dementia and battling the hematologic disorders she was diagnosed with, plus other chronic conditions that have affected her, she has had a difficult time. All of her medications, with the exception of those being given for comfort, have been stopped.

Probably the hardest thing was watching her cognitive abilities slip away. She was talented with various arts and crafts, and she had a way with people. And she could tell good stories.

As I write this I am sitting next to her bed. She is sleeping fitfully; she has been medicated due to her being agitated and disoriented.  She has not been eating, either. One of the staff brought her lunch in, but I don't expect she will eat.  She stopped that last night, from what I have been told. I don't hold out a lot of hope for her eating anything now, either. But all of us - I and my family - will keep watch over here while she is still with us.

She has a living will and a do not resuscitate order in place. They were implemented when she still had some semblance of memory. We will respect them.

And we will wait.


Elizabeth @ The Garden Window said...

Walt, your dear mother, you and all your family are in my heartfelt prayers thoughts at this painful time.

TOTWTYTR said...

My mother was sharp as a tack almost to the end, even as her body failed her. That was also difficult to watch.

I think the bottom line is that it's hard to watch someone whom you love slip away. It's probably even worse because of what we do or did for a living. We know what's coming and we also know that we're powerless to stop it.

I hope the end comes peacefully and painlessly, it's all that we can hope for.