I wish I had blogged two Wednesdays ago and/or two Thursdays ago. I wish I could have been able to go back and read what I observed those two days. Sadly, I didn't do that, but those were definitely interesting days. Because now things have changed! Tuesday night after your friends left I started giving you morphine to keep you from being so restless. You pretty much just slept Tuesday night. Then Wednesday you never really woke up, much. I got you to open your eyes a little bit when I went to change you, but you weren't in too much pain because I had been giving you the morphine to help with the pain. You weren't really responding to any of us, myself, your brother or your sister. The time I saw you open your eyes was when the massage therapist came in, she touched your face and you opened your eyes a little, but when she asked if it was OK for her to give you a massage you nodded your head yes. I left her in there to give you the massage. When she came out she told me that after she was done she asked you if you knew everything was going to be OK, and she said you again nodded your head yes. That was very touching to me, and made me emotional, but I was very glad she told me. You never responded after that. Because you were sleeping so much, I couldn't feed you or give you anything to drink. I just kept swabbing your mouth. I would go in the room and talk to you, hold your hand, sing to you, and pray with you. I think I hoped you would wake up, but you never did, and Wednesday night I didn't sleep well because I didn't want you to die in the middle of the night and we wouldn't know until morning. I got up a few times that night to check on you, but you were OK, still breathing and sleeping. I got up in the morning and was so glad to see your chest still rising and falling, even though you weren't waking up so I could talk to you and interact with you. I brought Bella out as normal, then came back in to change you. There still wasn't much of a reaction from you when I changed you, because of the morphine you didn't seem to have as much pain when I changed you. Sometime that morning the phone rang, when I looked at the caller ID I was so shocked!! It was my cousin, your niece, Andrea! We haven't heard from her in years. She has had some struggles and hasn't kept up with us because of some of them. So I just couldn't believe that she was calling! She had no idea that you weren't doing well because as I said she hadn't kept up with us for a while. When I told her you weren't great, she asked if I would just put the phone up to your ear. I did, and when she started talking to you, your eyes fluttered a bit, and I knew you understood this was a special phone call. Your sister and I just kept an eye on you throughout the day. The hospice nurse came over and checked your vitals. Your temperature was 97 which wasn't bad. Your oxygen level was 98% which was good, your pulse had been up, I had been checking it because the nurse said it should be about 18-20 normally, and the other day yours was 24. She said if it got over 28 then that would be a problem. That morning when she checked your breathing she said it was at 36. So that wasn't good, but there wasn't much we could do about that. Other than that I was encouraged that your vitals were OK. Then she checked your blood pressure, it was 90/50. I asked her if that was bad. She said it wasn't good. Then she took auntie and me out into the hallway so you wouldn't hear her, and told us that with your blood pressure that low, it was a sign of your body shutting down. She said it could be hours or it could be days, just can't tell. That of course made me so sad, but I just wanted to spend time with you, hoping that maybe you would start to show some improvement. The aide came to wash you a little, then the homemaker/companion came and sat with you. Auntie and I kept going back and forth into your room to spend some time with you. I would go in and sing to you, talk to you, and pray with you. Then a friend of mine told me to read Bible verses to you. So, I started doing that as well. The Lord allowed me to find Psalm 138, what a wonderful chapter. I would go back into the kitchen to watch TV or do some things on my phone and your sister would go sit with you. Since again you were only sleeping, all we could do was swab your mouth. I would go back in to spend more time with you, singing, praying, talking, and then take care of Bella, and hang out in the kitchen. You were breathing heavier, it was hard to watch, but I knew you weren't in pain, and that made me happy. That night auntie asked me what I wanted to do about sleeping, but I didn't get what she meant. She asked if I would want to do shifts to stay up with her round the clock. I never thought of that so I was glad she did. I told her I would stay up because I am a night owl anyway, plus I was staying up to watch the Olympics until at least 12 each night. So, she was glad to be able to go get some rest. I watched the Olympics, swabbed your mouth, prayed, sang, talked, and read to you.
About 1 a.m. your pastor texted me to see if it was OK for him to come over. I told him it was fine because I was up. He wasn't able to sleep because he found out his niece had just been life flighted to a hospital in NC because she had an accident falling off of a horse. We talked for a while, while I sat by you, holding your hand and checking on you. You seemed to be breathing even heavier, but I just kept talking to your pastor. He left about 1:30 or so. I went to charge my phone up by the outlet by the TV. The one thing I was concerned with was your breathing. I wasn't sure if you were breathing heavier or if it was my imagination. I asked the Lord how I was supposed to know when it was serious enough for me to call my aunt into the room, just in case you were getting worse. I mean, how does a person know?? Well, after asking the Lord about that, I turned to your bed, and looked at you and when I did........your eyes were open! They hadn't been open in a couple of days! And they stayed open. You were looking off to the side, so I went to get auntie to tell her that. She was awake from when your pastor came in, she hadn't been able to get back to sleep. So, she came in the room with me, and we stood over you, talking to you, singing to you, rubbing your arms, praying with you... You still had your eyes open and were breathing so heavy. I kissed your forehead and told you how much I loved you! I told you as I have done several times that you are my favorite gal....my best friend! You just kept breathing heavily, and then I did something that I never expected, never wanted to do...something I said I would never do....didn't think I could do.... I got down so that I could look right into your eyes and you could look into mine, and I told you what an amazing mom you were. I told you how much I loved you. I told you that you have done so much for so many people and were such a blessing to so many. You have worked so hard! Then I told you that Bella was on the floor right by the foot of the bed and she was OK, that your sister was standing next to you, and she was OK, then I told you that you were looking right into my eyes, and could see my face, and you could see that I was OK. I told you that we were all going to be OK, and that it was time for you to take your rest. I never thought I would be able to do that, but I had a strong feeling that you were holding on because you were worried about me. Even though your mind had been ravaged from this awful disease, there was some realization still there. I needed to tell you it was OK. People mentioned that to me all week, and though I said OK to them, inside I thought, sorry, that's just not going to happen! Maybe they could do it, but I couldn't. Well, here I was telling you what I thought you needed to hear. I was right, not too long after I told you that, your breathing started to slow down and soften, and slow down and soften, and slow down and soften....until you were taking just little breaths. You took one more, then one more, and then you were quiet, I thought you were gone, but then there was one more. Again I thought that was it, but there was even one more. Both auntie and I told you, it was OK. And you didn't breathe again....you were finally home. It was a terribly sad, beautiful, precious moment. All I could do was kiss you, and tell you how much I loved you! I couldn't believe this was it, no more time with you, no more moments, no more being able to take care of you! My life had now changed. It was difficult to think about it, but I was glad that you were no longer suffering! It's such a hard thing, because as glad as I was that you weren't suffering, I still wished I could have you back, just a little longer! We called your brother, and I texted your pastor and they both came over. I held your hand and sat by you for as long as possible before I finally called the hospice nurse to come pronounce you, and then pastor called Carmon Funeral Home to come and take you.
So, Friday, August 10, 2012, at about 2:08 in the morning I lost you...my favorite gal...my best friend. And now my life has changed...it's hard to know what to do because taking care of you was so much of my life that now it's hard not to have those moments and times. You are so missed, but I know you're happy to be home with Jesus, and with Pappy! I know you missed Pappy so much. I'm so happy for you, but so sad for me! I will miss you everyday! But I will remember your strength and try to stay strong, and make you proud! I love you so much! I miss you so much more! Thanks for being the best mom and example in my life! I love you!!!