Alright, so as most of you know, I am in Birmingham, AL right now. And I need to vent! That’s not really what I had in mind for my blog when I started it…but you know what? It’s MY blog and I’ll vent if I want to!
Yesterday was probably one of the most stressful days of my life. I had a good visit with Mom in the morning, and then yesterday afternoon my brother, Dad and I met with a woman who I will call ‘A’, from UAB’s Palliative Care center. We also met with the Doctor, but that was after being put through the wringer with A for a little over an hour.
I am sure that ‘A’ is a nice woman, and that she had the best of intentions. But it felt like she spent all that time trying to convince us that Mom doesn’t want to live anymore and that we should not feel guilty about ‘giving up’ on her. She said a lot more than that – she talked for over an hour, in case I didn’t mention that already. But the summary was that modern medicine has been extending Mom’s life beyond what’s natural and we should go ahead and treat her like we’re living 100 years ago when people just got put into a bed and their families tried to make them comfortable until they passed. No really, she said exactly that. I am absolutely positive that Ms. ‘A’ is getting kickbacks from the Grim Reaper.
Apparently ‘A’ had a conversation with Mom a day or two ago, and Mom told her that she didn’t want any more medical treatment. So ‘A’ took us back to Mom’s room so we could hear her say it ourselves. However, ‘A’ is a professional at talking in circles, and Mom is extremely medicated right now as she still has a chest tube in her side and is in a lot of pain without the drugs. Mom’s only partially lucid. So ‘A’ tries to lead her around to saying she doesn’t want to fight anymore, but Mom is not lucid and is feeling much better now that she’s not in pain anymore and wasn’t getting it. So it came down to telling Mom that the Doctors feel like she is not going to get better and does she want to stay where she’s at, or go somewhere more comfortable? And that’s when Mom started crying and said, “So you’re telling me that no matter what I am going to die here??” Oh yeah. Hearts broke left and right. Also, I would like to kick ‘A’ into next week.
Then the Doctor came in, and was all fakey fakey…but he at least was a little more direct in talking to us and said that basically, the hospital has made no progress on Mom’s illness since she’s been there. They don’t know what’s wrong with her, they haven’t been able to heal her, and there is nothing further that they know how to do. He said he feels like they have been torturing Mom rather than treating her. He asked her if she felt the same way, and she said, “No. I do not feel like you have been torturing me.” But the Doctor still recommends that we move her to Palliative Care and out of ICU.
I feel like we spent the afternoon being convinced that we should stop fighting for Mom, and that Mom wants to stop fighting. I also feel like A and the Doctor made Mom feel like we all want to stop fighting for her, too. The bottom line though is that at the end of it, Mom did say she wants to be moved, she does not want to be put back on a ventilator if it comes down to that. So today she will be moved to the Palliative Care floor. And as long as that’s what she wants, I’m OK with that. Mom is being prayed for, and I know that God does not need the ICU or anything to make her well again if that’s His will.
As you can probably imagine, I am an emotional mess. I am so ANGRY. Seriously, I am fighting myself to keep from being a witch to everybody. I am mad with no target for my anger. So I want to yell at people walking on the street, doctors standing in the hospital hallways, my brother, everybody. I would also love to lay down and sleep for a day or two, but Lauren hardly lets me sleep for more than 4 hours at a stretch. Did I mention that she’s sick, too? Oh the fun!
Pray for me, that I keep it together and don’t give in to the anger. Of course, pray for my family. And please, if I seem snippy to you – well, I probably am. But I don’t mean it! Take me with several grains of salt for a while, eh?