Supporting my father-in-law during Hospice Care
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Supporting my father-in-law through Hospice Care

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Supporting my father-in-law during Hospice Care

So from my last posting it was about a week before my father-in-law would pass to the other side.  It was a very rich deep experience for both of us.  I was his main care taker throughout the night as he did not want to be alone even though mom was sleeping in a bed in the same room.

On Monday early morning about 2 am he was restless and wanted to find the door to the upstairs.  Having experience with this, I put dad in the wheel chair and brought him out to the main living area.  He had me open the front door and when we were met with a cold winter wind he said that is not the door.  He kept asking me where is the door to his 2nd floor apartment.  My response was he would find the door when he is ready.  Then he said the pope was on the balcony throwing away discount tickets to heaven.  You had to know dad he was always looking for a discount.  I asked him if he got a ticket and he said no.  I told him that he will get one when it is time.  He wanted to go to sleep and told me if he died to not wake him up.  I told him I would not.  He so wanted just to go to sleep and could not.  

My husband witnessed this event and I told him I needed help.  So I arranged for a nursing assistant to come in to do the midnight shift.

On Wednesday while my husband and mom were out doing errands dad experienced oxygen deprivation and anxiety.  While waiting for the hospice nurse to return my calls, dad had me cut the air hose so he could put it in his mouth.  I got another portable oxygen tank and had 2 hoses pumping air into him.  He told me and my 16 year old granddaughter who was with us in his room that when this air is gone he is going with these 2 guys with mules and both of them had backpacks and he did not.  My granddaughter quickly ran into another room and brought him her backpack and placed it at the foot of the bed and told him here is his backpack.  He calmed down.  I believe that the 2 guys he was seeing was his 2 sons that passed away several years ago from cancer.  My husbands brothers were there waiting for him. 

Wednesday night was the first shift that we had a nursing assistant with dad.  She was very experienced with hospice.  That night I did not get a good night sleep as I was always used to being up and down all night.  It was a peaceful night for dad.

During the day on Thursday dad was calm as he laid in his bed with his eyes closed.  Remember even though they appear to be sleeping they are not - they are listening to everything you are talking about. I always made sure we were in the room with dad so he was not left out of all that was going on in the house.  

Thursday evening came and when the nursing assistant came in she noticed that his skin color had changed.  I did not of course being with him so much.  For some reason I sat with her for the first 30 minutes of her watch just talking.  I left the room and it was not more than 5 minutes that the nursing assistant rang the wireless doorbell to let me know to come.  

He had passed!  Dad was waiting for me to leave the room.  

At my next posting, I will describe the emotional roller coaster that we all experienced when we woke up mom to let her know that dad had passed away.

Until the next time.



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