Just as I started to write this, my dad called. Very confused, just woke up, and wondering if ‘mom’ was working and did she get anything to eat. He was using the nurse’s phone to call me. He realized that he slept a good part of the day, but now at nearly 10pm he’s awake. I anticipate another call during the night. That’s how things go sometimes.
I wasn’t made aware until today, that my dad’s pain meds were changed about 3 weeks ago. They took him off Norco and put him on Oxycodone. Norco just wasn’t doing it. As well, because he’s been very agitated and confused of late, they increase the dosage and frequency of Xanax. Instead of 0.25mg every 12 hours, PRN, they upped it to .50mg every 4 hours, if needed. I was told that when someone is actively dying, their dosage is increased to the next level.
As confused as he was today about so many things, he very much understood when I told him that a relative had passed away. As soon as I said Leo – he said “Hogan?” Then he mentioned that he used to work with Leo. He was trying to read the mass card I saved for him but would hold it up with his eyes closed. He said he was sorry he wasn’t there for both Leo and Irene. He talked of what a nice man Leo was, and how he knew he went to church daily and more.
So, moments after being sure there were French fries all over the floor, and that a girl was standing at the foot of his bed, he had this clarity and memory about our relative who died on my dad’s birthday, and was buried yesterday.
My dad hasn’t had clothes on in days it seems. That upsets me a great deal. But on a day like today, where he’s had serious trouble with constipation and other issues, I can see why, as he probably won’t be getting out of bed. When he needs to use the bathroom – he insists on using the damn bathroom. That means a lift is brought into the room, he’s hoisted up and rolled over to the bathroom. Presses the call light when ready to be hoisted up and rolled back to bed. One of his CNAs (Sean) who is a great caregiver to my dad, mentioned that he was afraid my dad my get a hernia from these issues and he’s keeping a close eye on him.
I also may have mentioned the serious weight gain. Well, they’re trying to work on that to cut out one of the feedings they give him, from 5 down to 4 per day. I don’t know how fast that could work, but his stomach is extremely distended.
Even in his confusion, he’d hear a voice out in the hallway – recognizing another favorite CNA named Michelle. There’s been some issues with getting him the proper wheelchair. Not just to get around easier, but to accommodate both feet without dropping of one; to have wheels on the side so he can get himself around on his own – when he’s ready again.
OxycodoneThere are a couple of other guys there who keep checking in on him. Other CNAs have acknowledged that he seems to be failing and faster. They have all been so supportive.
I took down some of his St. Pat’s day decorations today but left up his birthday card/sign. I taped it to his door so anyone who wanted to wish him a happy birthday, could do so right there. I am sharing that picture here. Wonder if you might notice something very cute.