Sunday, July 26, 2009

The longest week

This last week has been one of the longest weeks of my life. My grandma fell two Wednesday's ago at Bob Evans after eating dinner there with my grandfather. He fell while trying to help her up. When she fell, she broke her wrist, which was evident immediately. She went to the hospital and they admitted her that night and she had surgery Thursday morning on her wrist. The whole time she kept saying her hip hurt her more than her wrist. They did an x-ray Thursday and said nothing looked broken. She could come home Friday if she could walk on her hip. Friday she could not stand on it and they took an MRI. It was broken. They told her they would have surgery on it over the weekend and that she might have to go to a nursing home for awhile to complete some rehab. She refused. Her neice called my dad and said that grandma was being uncooperative. He had my mom pack a bag and he headed down there that night. The next morning when he took my grandpa to the hospital to see her they had already taken her back to surgery. She had a partial hip replacement. She came out of surgery with a fever and sometime that afternoon they think she had a heart attack. My cousin came from across the state and took my grandpa home that night and my dad spent the night at the hospital. Her heart stopped twice and they performed CPR on her the first time breaking some ribs. The second time they used medicine to get it to start. At 6 am he called my mom and said that he didn't think my grandma was going to make it through the day. At 7:50 my mom called to tell me that. At 10:30 she asked if I would go with her. By noon we were on the road.



When we got there around 4pm, she had just started responding to touch and would nod to answer questions. She had not been able to do that earlier in the day. At this point we were informed that her kidneys were not functioning and grandma refused dialysis. She was on a respirator and had a breathing tube down her throat. My dad's sister spent the night at the hospital with her that night. Monday she seemed a lot more responsive and nodding and trying to talk to us through the breathing tube. We found out her liver enzymes were up and she continued to refuse dialysis. Honestly, she seemed to be doing better and they tried a feeding tube and medicine to get her kidney's working. No one spent the night because it kinda seemed like she was doing better and the respirator wasn't doing all of her breathing for her.



Tuesday we walked in and the nurses met with my grandpa, dad and aunt in my grandma's room. They said they had already discussed this with grandma but wanted them to hear it too. Since my grandma was refusing dialysis there really wasn't anything they could do for her. They were going to remove her from all machines and make her comfortable. They took her off the respirator around 11:30. Around noon, grandma was well aware of us in her room and we all went in and talked to her. I told her I loved her and kissed her shoulder. She was crying. That was the last time I talked to her. I went in and out of her room all afternoon. Sometimes it was harder than others to watch her. She struggled a lot in pain the early hours of the afternoon and then they upped the pain medication and she rested peacefully. At around 7:30 I went into her room and sat with her, my dad, my oldest cousin, my dad's sister and her husband. Around 9:30 my brother and husband arrived. Her breathing almost immediately started slowing way down. Around 10:30 we knew it would not be long. At 10:54 p.m. on July 21st I watched my dear sweet 83 year old grandma take her last breath.



There is a lot of regret, guilt, sadness and anger that I haven't yet processed. But I do know that I will miss her more than I ever expected possible.

4 comments:

Lisa from Lisa's Yarns said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. I lost my grandfather in February & his death happened so fast. It left me reeling and I still can't quite believe he is gone.

I will keep you & your family in my prayers. How is your grandpa doing?

Luanne said...

Emily - I am so very very sorry for your loss. Your words touched me very much. My thoughts are with you....

Amber (Girl with the red hair) said...

I'm so sorry for your loss. Those kinds of things are never easy. It sounds like your grandmother lived a long, full life, though...

My thoughts are with you and your family!

Anais said...

I read this post right before getting on the plane in July and didn't have time to post a comment, but I wanted to let you know that I was so sorry for your loss. I actually cried reading it because my grand-mother passed away in April in almost exactly the same circumstances. I hope you are doing better *hugs*