Saturday, February 14, 2009

Exhausted...

I visited my Grandpa this am. It has been a rough week. Heart attack. Tear in the femoral artery. Kidneys started to shut down at one point. Blood pooling in his abdomen. All I can say is he is one tough cookie. The doctors didn't think he'd make it, but he surprised them and came through it all.

All week I'd been hearing from various people that he was doing much better. So I guess I was expecting him to seem like his normal self. Which resulted in my being sort of caught off guard when I saw him this am. He hadn't really slept last night and I guess he hasn't slept very well the last few nights, and that takes its toll on a person. Very fast. My question is: why not give the poor man some sedatives? I am sure there is some medical reason for this.... The doctor hasn't been in to check on him for 3-4 days apparently. Which is odd to me considering the fact that he is in the critical care unit of the hospital...

Anyways, when I walked in, it was apparent that he was exhausted. I sat down and he started showing me his 'war wounds' from the week - much of his arms from his wrist to just above the elbow are black from all the blood that had been drawn. It looked painful, but he shrugged it off and said, "eh, I bruise easily." Did I mention he's a tough cookie?

Since he hadn't slept much, the nurses asked that we keep visits pretty short, so I only stayed for 45 min. My grandma & aunt Laurie from CA walked me to the elevators. My grandparents have been married for 60+ years so I can only imagine how hard this is on my Grandma. Especially since there's been no discussion of what happens next. Does he come home? Does he go to a nursing home? How long will he be in the hospital? My Grandma is handling all the uncertainty quite well, though. When I hugged my Grandpa good-bye, he said, "You know, I still have alot of projects left to do in this life." When we were walking to the elevator, my Grandma commented on how she didn't know how he'd ever get back to those projects considering his current condition.

I said good-bye to Grandma & Laurie at the elevators - I was doing so well and had gotten through the whole visit sans tears. Until the good-byes. I wanted to be strong & didn't want my Grandma to see how much this whole thing is upsetting me, but I couldn't keep the tears in. I couldn't get the words out very well, but in a squeaky voice I said, "You guys just mean so much to me." For the first time in my life, I saw my Grandma's eyes fill with tears and she said, "I know, Lisa." They gave me one last hug and I took the elevator down and hit the road again.

I watched both of my McDougall Grandparents pass away - it was a long, slow process. There were so many times my mom thought my Grandpa was passing away & then he'd pull through and make it another couple of months. So I know these things take time... He could bounce back and be good as new. Or this could be the beginning of the end. There is no way of knowing.

Last night, I couldn't sleep. I must have laid awake until at least 2 am. I laid there wondering if Grandpa was also lying awake in his hospital bed. All my usual tricks like breathing deeply or saying Our Father's and Hail Mary's weren't working. So this morning, I am just exhausted. I need to go to church in a bit. Then meet a classmate to work on a Derivatives assignment. And then write a paper. So there won't be any time for a nap today.

If I'm this tired, I can only imagine how exhausted Grandpa must feel...

5 comments:

Amber said...

I'm so sorry to hear that.

My grandma had a massive heart attack two years ago and it was SO hard seeing her in the hospital, she looked so fragile and she's always been such a tough old bird. I hate it when stuff like that happens because you try so hard not to cry and to be strong but it's SO hard.

I hope everything works out okay for your Grandpa. Try to get some sleep if you can, it'll do you a world of good!

Abby and Ryan said...

I got tears in my eyes reading your response of seeing Grandpa. One of the biggest things we need to be SO GRATEFUL for is that he still has his cognition! If he still has his will and his mind, we still have grandpa. Giving him sedatives, as easy as it would be, might be medication overload on him--for I'm sure he's taking in a lot and they could put him at risk for more heart problems.

Try getting some rest, Lisa. I know it's hard seeing someone we love so much in not the best condition. :( I love you and hope you feel better soon.

BandB said...

Your grandparents are in my prayers.
Take care of yourself, Lisa.

aimee said...

i will pray for your grandpa. i'm sorry that you and your family have to go through this right now.

Marlys said...

Well, like you said, he's a tough cookie! They were going to discharge him on Saturday evening but we refused to take him out of the hospital and they agreed to keep him until Monday. Dr. said they couldn't keep him any longer because of medicare rules etc, and they can't do anything for him until he completely heals from the arterial rupture, so they sent him packing on Monday morning. He's at Betty's for a few days and then will return home. I wouldn't be surprised to see his pickup down at the shop working on his engines! I do pray that happens! He slept well the last few nights so is feeling much better. Grandma looks very tired, though.