Thursday, January 17, 2013

Deja Vu

Some experiences are not meant to be repeated. Today was one of them. 

My mom fell very early yesterday morning.  She didn't hurt her head, and her back -- which hurts -- isn't black and blue.  Her forearms are a little worse for the wear with a bruise at the wrist on the left and some torn skin on the right, but those are not the problem.  On the surface, this is not a life-threatening situation. 

But her back hurts.  Not the whole back, not even the spine. It hurts in the place that should be a multicolored bruise.  She says she thinks she broke a rib.  She says when she moves something sharp pokes on something else, generating a stabbing pain. 

Today I have been giving her enough pain medication (at the direction of her Hospice provider) that she has either been in pain but groggy or pain-free and asleep all day.  That means a tiny bit of morphine every hour.  Around the clock.   It has now been more than 5 hours since she was last awake enough to take a hydrocodone tablet and her allotment of morphine.  I cannot let her go too long without pain medication for fear that she will wake up in the same intense pain as she did this morning.  That was NOT good.   So dropped a tiny dose of morphine into her gently snoring mouth.   If I can get her to swallow another hydrocodone in the next 3 hours, I can sleep a little myself.  Hospice is working on a time-release morphine that works for 12 hours, but we didn't get the prescription authorized today. 

She has not eaten today.  She is barely drinking fluids.  She is having trouble swallowing, and her RN is suggesting a thickening agent.  She might try it, but I don't know if she will like it.  If she doesn't like it, it will go to waste.  I might try  some applesauce if I can get her to wake up long enough to swallow two bites.    Getting out of bed, even to get to the bedside commode, is a struggle today. 

All because she slid off the end of her bed and onto the floor.  In the dark.  Trying to do everything for herself. 

 Been here before.  Didn't like it then.  Don't like it much now.  Hospice is Heaven-sent.  Hospice and friends keep me sane. 

Don't forget to pray ...  Pray especially for those who care for the ill and the helpless -- like Jim, Deb and Terri along the Washington/Oregon border whose fight for Carl is much bigger than the one I face.  Pray for every Hospice worker who has ever lived.  Your affirm my faith in humankind. 

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