Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Letting go.

Yesterday, I got a call from my mom.  This isn't an out-of-the-ordinary thing.  The call was while I was at work.  Again, Mom can call about the goofiest things and I need to occasionally (and gently) remind her that I must work and she can catch me on whatever it is later.  Though I couldn't catch the call, I did call her right back.

It was about Grandpa.

Grandpa has been in the hospital with pneumonia and complications as a result since January.  Early January to be exact.  I was called in, in January, because that was predicted to be his last time with us.  We had a great visit, he ate his meal, he asked about Hubs and K- and all seemed to be fairly well. 

That was not Grandpa's time.

The day after my visit in January, my aunt had okay'd Grandpa to have a trach put in.  This was to help him get over the pneumonia and to hopefully have him get past the fact that his lungs kept filling up with fluid. 

Fast forward to now.

The call yesterday was Mom stating that they were going to take Grandpa off life support and that he wanted to see everyone he could before that happened.  I gave Billy a call, we made arrangements for me to pick him up, I worked for an hour longer and left.  (I had to get a display finished.) 

We were able to visit with Grandpa for about an hour and a half.  We had to hazmat-up before we went in.  We were both wearing sexy blue plastic gowns and latex gloves.  I told Grandpa that we wore our best just for him. 

He smiled.

We went on for the next hour and a half struggling to read Grandpa's lips as he told us how he wanted to go, how he was miserable, but laughed (as much as he actually could) about goofy things from childhood, we trouble shooted Billy's issues with getting a proper "stomp" on a ceiling and about how Grandpa worked with my boss on a large wall piece. 

Side note:  Grandpa is a retired plasterer who taught all of us kids the fine art of drywall and drywall finishing.  All of us can hang drywall, patch a hole and now, properly stomp a ceiling. 

We prayed with Grandpa and I prayed God's will for his life.  There's one thing that trumps that, though.

Legal papers.

Grandpa is fully cognitively intact.  His body has failed him.  He is remaining with us only by mechanical means.  At this point, they have drawn fluid off Grandpa's lungs on a regular basis.  That fluid has turned to a pudding-like consistency.  They can no longer remove that.  He has a trach and a breathing machine.  He has fluids going in, including some type of feeding tube in his stomach.  He has means to deal with the output, too. 

Grandpa no longer wants to exist in this condition.

My aunt is the executor of Grandpa's will and the one in charge of all of his papers regarding medical status.  His papers currently state that he is to be kept alive with any means possible. 

That's so unfair.

Grandpa's life is purely quantity.  No quality is left.  To want him to remain in this condition and against his will is completely selfish.  I understand that on one hand, he is fully aware, not skipping a beat in conversation and not confused in any way.  He has, however, not had anything by mouth at all since the time I was there for his last meal in January.  He just kept mouthing, "They won't even let me have water."  I told him that I don't know how his tongue isn't stuck to the roof of his mouth at this point.

So, I go to you o' friends of the internet.  Please continue to pray God's will for Grandpa's life.  He's ready to move on.  Let's pray that those in charge of that decision allow him to do so.


Rach said...

My prayers for you all.


ChupieandJ'smama said...

Praying for Grandpa. And for God's will to be done. Hugs to you during this difficult time.