Not much change in Pop’s condition over the past few days. We aren’t quite sure what to think – time to track down some doctors and see what they say about his progress (or lack there of)…
We didn’t get to spend much time there today, but I’m not sure if he noticed. They had to put in a new gravage tube – because his “came loose”… translation – his restraints had enough slack to allow him to pull it out. He is supposed to be watched pretty closely, so I’m not sure how it happened. He has some sort of an infection, so we are asked to gown up before going in.
He seemed to be asleep, even when they were trying to put the NG tube back in place. Communication is still minimal. He still is unable to swallow an ice chip – so he is unable to eat on his own.
How much of it is a physical limitation? And how much of what we are seeing is him giving up?!? How would you feel to be 63 and lose any and all independence? How would you feelto be back in the hospital for the third time in three weeks, worse than ever before?
Before we got to the hospital today, I had a call from a rehabilitation facility. The guy told me that my dad was being discharged today… and that he needed a plan for what happens when Pops is done with his stay there. He had already called Sun Street and knew Dad had no where to live. He wanted to know what “our” plan was – even if it changes, he needs to know.
Now…. I get the need for a plan. We have asked social workers for help to come up with a plan. We know he needs care. We don’t yet know what level of care – BECAUSE HE IS NO WHERE NEAR BEING READY TO BE DISCHARGED!!!
This guy was kind of irritated with me, because I said that he was wrong. Dad could not possibly be leaving the hospital. And I would not (even for a fake discharge plan), say that he can live with me. It can’t happen. I have to think of my kids. Sorry. He said that he still needed to evaluate and meet Dad before he can accept him as a patient – I said you have to get his consent, because we do not have legal power to make his decisions…. and since he cannot communicate clearly, good luck with that. Although I hear he is pretty good about using colorful language when he is talking….
Turns out it was a misunderstanding. The hospital cleared it up, and now we know that we should only talk discharge with the hospital for now. And we aren’t there yet.
So not much change. But here is my plea to my friends and family. Especially if you have kids….
Have a plan. Share your thoughts, your wishes, your needs. Make sure it is known. Write it down. What if that plan isn’t possible? What then? If you can’t use your voice, have you prepared your kids or loved ones to speak for you? Don’t assume that you have years and years to come up with a plan. Do it now!!!
Seriously – DO IT NOW! Have the hard conversations. Your loved ones might not want to hear it, but they need to hear it. Then spend every waking moment making memories and sharing your love. ❤️