It was Saturday the 10th of May and we had loaded the bouncy castle into the car to take to the MIL's for a party for the newly weds son's first birthday. The boys had started on the back garden, clearing the grass, dirt and slabs, a lorry had just arrived to take away the rubbish and off load some 'type one' a technical term for stones which are used underneath the paving blocks. We used this day to practise the daughters hair, ready for her communion the following week, I was just adding the finishing touches when the phone rang, it was my mum;
'I'm just about to go to the hospital, your gran is being taken in' she said 'I'm going to meet the ambulance there, I thought I should let you know' this time her voice breaking into tears.
'What's happened' I asked
'She was being taken for her lunch and she just slouched, her tongue and her lips went blue and the home have phoned an ambulance as it took them a while to rouse her' she explained
This is it I thought, the phone call I have been dreading, I don't think I can cope with this today, dealing with a funeral and a communion. 'I'll meet you there' I said. By this time I was in tears which makes the children worry, my son went to get his Daddy and my daughter wiped my tears. Typically our car was parked behind the lorry, which had its stabilising legs out and was blocking the whole road. But the hubby being my knight in shining armour advised the driver he would ne' ae shift his lorry as the wives granny wisnae well. I hurried out of the house trying to hide my scarlet, teary face while thanking the boys without making eye contact. On one hand if my Granny was to slip away I wouldn't want her to be resuscitated, at the age of 86 with the severe dementia she has, I don't think it's fair, but on the other hand, this is my Granny and I wasn't ready to part with her. The whole journey to the hospital I gave myself a good talking to, she was 86, she'd had a good life, she has no quality of life at the moment. But it didn't stop the tears flowing. The only one passing comment I could make to the hubby being;
'I don't even have a tissue, you would think being a mother I would carry a pack of tissues' sniffing back the snot.
The hubby dropped me at the door and said he would come back up after dropping the kids at his mothers, I couldn't even say goodbye. I managed to tell the girl at the reception desk that my gran had been brought in by ambulance and gave her name. The girl then politely said
'She already has a relative in with her and we only allow one relative' in the kind of tone that one wants to smash her face in.
My immediate thoughts were, only one relative, is that good or bad, is it because she is so ill that they only allow one, but I was able enough to confirm that would be my mum and could someone tell her that I'm here.
A few minutes later a female nurse came to the door and ushered me in and with a sympathetic arm around me she lead me through, she'd obviously died, I could tell by her reaction and the fact they are letting me in, with this I took a sharp breath in and let out a big sob. The nurse at this point said 'She's ok, she's right in here' pushed the door open and there sat my mother with the same red, teary face. 'It's ok, she's ok' said my mum and at that my Granny, in a big loud voice, said 'I'm ok' I was so relieved.
I then had to explain to my mum and the nurses that I thought due to the sympathetic action of the nurse that she had passed away. It turns out the nurse was in fact my Gran's new carer from the home, I had just seen the uniform and assumed it was a nurse. The hospital staff were fantastic and keep apologise for keeping us waiting, they gave us tea and sandwiches and were very understanding of the dementia. We have come across many people who have never dealt with dementia and start to raise their voice when my Gran fails to respond with the answer to their question. One thing she is not and that is deaf! Granny under went all sorts of tests that day, several ECG's, blood tests, a chest X-ray, a sample taken from an artery in the wrist which was extremely painful for her and for us, practically having to pin her down to have it done by a young nervous doctor. She arrived in casualty at approx 1.15pm and finally at 7pm she was admitted to a ward. The ward was particularly quiet that evening and the staff nurse spent a good bit of time with us, allowing us to explain all her dementia issues, meaning we could go home and relax knowing that she would not be left unattended with the bed rails down.
During her time in casualty the nurse came in to tell me that my husband was outside. Standing waiting with a packet of tissues, ready to take the emotional outburst. I was emotional but by then it was a relieved gibbering. He would have stayed but due to the one person restriction I sent him to reassure the kids.
Granny was released the next day with confirmation that she had a Urinary Tract Infection and a course of Antibiotics.
As usual things always come in threes and on Monday there was a follow up appointment at the hospital as the X-rays had shown something the doctors wanted to discuss. We knew it had to be something of concern. My mum attended the appointment and basically to cut a long story short my Gran has a small mass on her lung which they can only assume to be cancer. Given her age there will be no operation or treatment and nature will take it's course they will of course keep her comfortable. The last X-ray she had was approx 2 years ago and there will be another X-ray shortly to determine growth. At the moment it seems to be causing her no pain.
As I am trained in Reiki I have been sending distant Reiki since Monday, in cases cancer has been known to go completely with continual Reiki treatment, although with me the jury is still out on that one. I do not wish to rid my Gran of cancer to prolong her life, but merely to make sure she doesn't suffer.