Thursday, May 25, 2006

Great Grandma Update #2

Today I got another e-mail from Grandma Bills regarding Great Grandma Harmon. I wanted to post part of it. Someday when Kathryn is older I want her to know what happened with her Great Great Grandma. Even though this update makes me very sad, I'm glad that I've been kept informed of what's going on and that I'm so close at a moments notice. "Mom is VERY yellow. Her legs are swelling. Her abdomen is swollen. She is often very incoherent. Sometimes she surprises me and is quite lucid and coherent. She wakes me up a lot at night....last night she got to the bathroom with her walker before I could get up and she stood at the sink wetting and wringing out a washcloth. When I asked her what she was doing, she said she was washing. 15 minutes later she was still "washing" --it is like obsessive/compulsive behavior. She is losing muscle tone and stability. Her skin doesn't fit any more in many places. She wants to know where she is. She says "those people here don't know anything." She usually recognizes me and is often very critical, but when she is, I know its not my Mother talking--its the illness. Hospice says the toxins are building up in her brain." "Mom hardly eats anything now. Her bowels are hardly functioning. She goes for days with only a few bites of food and some water and maybe a little milk. Then, she will sit up and eat a meal! I always offer her food and even try to feed her as her hands are often unsteady in getting the food to her mouth. But she eats so little! Says everything tastes awful. If something is good one time, the next time she gags on it. I was so happy that she liked root beer floats--even asked for a second one. They lost their appeal, so we tried cream soda (she says our water is AWFUL). That was okay for a day or she is back to a little water. Tonight she asked for a drink of milk. She drank about 1/2 cup!!!" "When we know there is no way Mom can get better, it is hard to "wait" while she lingers and withers away. We are praying she will go softly and soon and that her suffering will be minimal. I would say that she is not us just those of us watching her who do." We are all praying that she will go soon. My greatest fear for her is that it will be painful. On the lighter side of things Great Grandma would have been 80 in August and we were going to put her picture in the paper with a Birthday announcement. She was firmly set against that and didn't want everyone to see her picture. We joked with her at our last visit that her picture would now be in the paper whether she wanted it or not and, there is nothing she can do about. She chuckled and thought this was a funny thought.


Trish said...

ginormous hugs, hon. Wish I could do more to help you through a tough time.

ablondeblogger said...

((((Jen)))))) I'm so sorry. Your poor, poor great grandma. I will continue praying for her, and for you.