This is starting to feel like a death watch.
My mother is getting moved up to an intensive care unit. Her breathing is declining; co2 is building up in her blood. They’re putting her on a cpap machine, but odds are she won’t tolerate it well (anxiety).
The next step is a ventilator, and obviously, once she’s on a ventilator, the odds that she’ll never come off go up.
A week ago doctors were telling me there’s nothing medically wrong with her; I’m wondering how they looked at a woman close to respiratory failure and came up with that.
The truth is that none of this surprises me. I knew a month ago that the curtain was drawing closed for her. She knew it too, on some level, when she started to say she couldn’t go on. I only wish there was a way to avoid all this, and ease her off now. Because they’re not going to save her; they’re only going to prolong pain. If she leaves the hospital in a week, she’ll be back in it in a mont or two, and meantime, she’ll gasp every damned breath and fear every waking moment.
I’m ok. Calmer than I felt a week ago. Death, I can handle; it’s the problem I can’t solve that troubles me. Now, for the first time in a month, I feel like I’ve done what I can do and the problem, one way or another, is going to take care of itself. And then I can get on with the business of mourning.