Monday, June 1, 2009

Closure, of a sort

So. We got to the hospital Saturday evening. At that point, Grandma had some reflexive responses, but not much. One, which was disturbing, is called posturing - it's sort of like the body is trying to curl into a fetal position. It's something the body does to try and protect the brain when the brain is being damaged. Aunt Laura said she kept doing it again and again. All four ventricles filled with blood, they had a shunt in but couldn't drain it all. Neither could they stop the bleed. Sunday, she wasn't tolerating the feeding tube well, and they had to increase IV fluids. By today, she was no longer showing any reflexes. We had a meeting with Grandpa and the doctors - the doctors said she is going to continue going downhill. She will probably have a heart attack in the near future. It was decided to "not perform heroic measures" which I think I understand to be a DNR - she is dying, and we're letting her go.
We know God always answers prayer - He just doesn't always say yes. Sometimes He says "Wait" - and sometimes He says no. We had been very, very concerned about my grandfather's mental state, as he didn't seem to be understanding the situation. My grandpa is a wonderfully soft-hearted man who never had a baby animal on his farm that was too sick and too far gone to be swaddled and nursed by hand. Every time we visited, I think, there was something wrapped in blankets in the barn or on the back porch getting milk, vitamins, medicine. And they didn't always make it - some things are just too sick to live, born too early, too small, or both, and all the milk and vitamins in the world can't change it. But Grandpa always tried. He was talking about taking Grandma home on the ventilator and caring for her himself - no way, not possible, he has a farm and she needs to be in ICU. She needs 24/7 care. And so we had been concerned about how hard it would hit him when he finally did realize that this time, there is nothing he can do. To our great relief, it seemed at the meeting that he has accepted it - she is not coming home. She is going home. We're all going to miss her very, very much.
Thank you so much for your prayers. Really, thank you, thank you, thank you. I got on my cousin's laptop at the hospital yesterday and saw in my e-mail comments from people I don't even know, and it was very comforting. Thank you.


MrBrownThumb said...


I just wanted to say that your family will be in my prayers tonight.

Mimi said...

Oh dear, my hugs and love are with you during this difficult time. May God hold you in the palm of his hand.

Pres. Kathy said...

You are in our prayers.