Yesterday when I went to visit my dad, he had to demonstrate that his nose was bleeding. It wasn't free bleeding, like when you get smashed in the nose and require a small mountain of cold washcloths and some judicious pinching to staunch the blood flow. Instead, he blew into a paper napkin a moist clot containing about 1/4 tsp of blood.
He complained of pain in his shoulders, more intense than it was earlier in the week. He has been taking Tylenol to ease the pain.
He seemed apprehensive.
His charge nurse called just after 8 a.m. He was awake most of the night, coughed a lot, and coughed up more blood. His 0xygen level was running about 90%; he was placed first on a nebulizer, then on oxygen. By breakfast, his oxygen level was up to 97%.
When Ian saw him early this afternoon, he seemed disconnected from reality. Ian didn't think he was recognized. He age only about two bites of lunch, and then only with assistance.
By 2:30 p.m. when I arrived, he was dozing, but woke when I put my hand on this shoulder, opened his eyes, and called me by name. He dozed again, but when a little old lady from down the hall "came visiting", he thought she was my mother and greeted her warmly.
"Why, Mrs. Lind, I don't see nearly enough of you these days. Won't you sit down? Bonnie, help your mother with a chair."
I did not correct him, and he was disappointed when a nurse came to take the lady back to her own room.
He will continue to receive oxygen when staff can persuade him to keep a canula in place. Better chance with that than a full mask.
He is receiving liquid morphine on demand, plus one or two drops on his tongue at bedtime.
Today the nurse practitioner, who will consult with the doctor tomorrow, suggested that he be placed in Hospice care. They may or may not do the necessary diagnostic procedures to determine exactly what is going on in his chest.
At worst possible case, he has recurrent pneumonia. Untreated recurrent pneumonia can lead to patient death in about 4 weeks.
I think my father is afraid of death.
Give thanks for the long, full life my father has lived. Pray for a pain-free body and a peaceful heart. Pray that he feels only love around him.