On Thursday May 9th, we engaged with Hospice Care. The decision to do so was two-fold, 1) we needed the medical care to be in-home, 2) we needed a guide through what is Mom’s final chapter.
The family had several discussions and my Mom asked that we wait to do this as long as possible. But, the time came and my Mom was accepting and acknowledged that we need the guidance at home. Going to the doctor for every question was just too taxing on her.
Hospice has provided us with a lot of knowledge and comfort. They come in regularly to check Mom’s vitals and to answer our questions. They also offer us services like providing prescriptions, oxygen when needed, mouth swabs, and other items.
Thinking about why they are here, has been hard for me and others to accept because bringing in “end-of-life” care isn’t something I’ve wanted to face or even accept. I think it took awhile for Mom to accept it for that reason as well. She is such a fighter. She is the strongest women I have ever met.
But, accepting what is, and embracing where we are, and embracing Mom’s illness and the severity of it, has been a critical step in my life. Albeit the hardest experience.
Hospice is now a part of my Mom’s care “team” and working with them to gain a better understanding of what they can provide for Mom and how we can work together to provide comfort for our beautiful Mom is so important at this phase.
Because the only medication Mom can take at this point for pain is high levels of Morphine, the tricky balance this week has been trying to maintain my Mom’s level of mental clarity, without compromising her comfort. Her request last week, was just that. And so we are working hour by hour (24/7) to make sure that Mom can still enjoy the few hours she is awake during the day, visiting with family and friends, with as little pain as possible.
My Mom is now at my sister Angie’s house. She requested to come here week before last. My sister’s house is just beautiful. There is a creek that runs along the back, the yard is meticulously manicured with a beautiful flower garden (the peonies are getting ready to bloom) and plenty of trees that provide shade throughout the day. Mom is sleeping in a room that has full windows on two sides that face the backyard. My Dad put up a humming bird feeder so that she can watch the humming birds in the mornings and evenings. This home is peaceful, warm and comforting, and she is in bliss here. It is such a blessing to my Mom that Angie and Steve opened their home to she and all 5 billion of us in the family. 🙂 It’s just been paradise for Mom.
Angie’s loving care in this chapter has been amazing. And the comfort that each of my Mom’s children (and their spouses), grandchildren and friends bring to her, has been beautiful to witness. She has been taken care of by so many, and been surrounded in love every second.
And even in this hour, my Mom is filled with grace and a power that is astounding. How very lucky we are to have her as our Mom and our anchor.