I – E-mail 07/21/2015

E-mail sent to family & friends at 9:54pm:

First of all, let me tell you how much you all mean to mama.
Your visits, cards, flowers, gifts…your prayers!
Most of you she has known personally for a long time.
A few of you, she has only known by how you love me and our little family.
She has been overwhelmed by your love and concern and care.
And she is in a peaceful state of mind.

It was good day for mom and I.
We pretty much had the whole lazy Sunday to ourselves.
It was quiet.
We talked. A lot.
And laughed some, too.
We even napped.
And when momma would get emotional, I’d detour our conversation.
And when I would get emotional, momma would detour our conversation.
A lot alike, we are.
And boy, do we love each other!
There is nothing my mama wouldn’t do for me.
Hasn’t done for me.
And there is nothing I wouldn’t do for her.
Being here, in this place, in this moment…
There’s no where else I’d be.
Mom’s cognitive abilities were noticeably depressed.
She was having difficulty concentrating and comprehending.
So much so, that it became frustrating for her.
For example, she began expressing concern over not knowing what medicines she was taking.
She was forgetful.
She would giggle when being talked to often, not understanding what was being said.
She appeared to be zoned out a lot, even though her eyes were open.
All this time, I’ve told you all we’ve not had any “tearful moments” together…
Tears came on this day.
Mom felt very strongly she needed to apologize….to everyone.
To the nursing staff.
To the aides helping her.
To me.
Pain meds were given, and meds to help with mom’s anxiety.
Throughout the night, she moaned and grimaced.
Her pain was increasing.
Mom tasted a piece of chicken, but had to spit it out because it was too difficult to swallow.
She had a spoonful of potatoes and some collards.

Mom was in and out of awareness this morning.
Her slumber throughout the morning into the afternoon was broken frequently
by the involuntary twitching and movements of her body.
She was moaning, and “Ooo, ooo, ooo-ing” every time that happened.
She was in pain.
Dr. Shah talked to her about her pain and anxiety when he came into our room around lunchtime.
He was very concerned over her pain, which was evidenced in mom’s tense body, involuntary twitching, and grimacing.
He also talked to her about her anxiety.
Mom agreed with his suggestion of increasing her pain meds and adding a med to help relax her (for her anxiety).
This began around 3pm.
Within a half an hour, mom began to rest.
The good kind of rest.
Solid sleep, uninterrupted by painful body movements.
She slept good throughout the night.
Mom did not eat on this day and she drank very little.
Mom was not able to communicate with me this morning, by talking.
However, she did open her eyes, and respond to me as I was talking to her.
She was relaxed. Comfortable.
Dr. Shah discontinued the medicines mom had previously been taking by mouth,
like Zofram (for nausea) and medicines to help her bowels move,
as she was unable to swallow medicines by mouth.
Those type of meds aren’t needed anymore, really.
I know momma hears me, and she was able to respond to me most of the morning and early afternoon.
Like, I’d put lip balm on her lips and say,
“now momma, you know I can’t press your lips together, you’ve got to do that”.
And she would.
And my heart would do a cartwheel.
Or I’d mention her dancing toes (because she would wiggle them),
and she’d stop or start wiggling them when I asked.
That was about the extent of her ability to communicate, though.
Her eyes could hardly focus on anything.
But her hearing, and her sense of touch….very good.
I held momma’s hand throughout the day.
I’d rub her feet, stroke her hair.
Put my head on her bedrail, right in front of her face, and talk to her.
I’d tell her how much I love her, and how everything is okay.
Early in the day, momma would purse her mouth together, and I knew she wished she could say “I love you back”,
So I told her I know how much she loves me.
Then she’d relax her mouth.
I got it right!
Later in the afternoon, around 6:30pm, I noticed mom’s breathing becoming a little more rapid.
Again, I held her hand and talked to her.
She would respond to my asking questions with little moans, but I couldn’t understand if she was trying to say anything.
The nurse came in and talked to her.
They are so wonderful up here.
She gave momma something to help dry up some of the moisture in her throat, so her breathing would be easier.
Mom’s still resting, as I am typing.
Her body does seem more relaxed.
She is comfortable.

All this to say, “We are good”.
All of us.
My little family is all together in Room 15 tonight.
Red Bone Alley is what’s for dinner.
ShortStop is looking at me, hoping I’ll share some chicken planks with her.
Mom seems to rest most peacefully when we’re together, all of us, doing what we do.

Thank you so much for praying and loving on us through your gifts, cards, visits.
Asking tonight very specifically for your prayers –
Please pray for mom to remain comfortable and peaceful.
Pray for the boys, Kev and me…
Pray for understanding & calm.
Pray for strength.

We love you all.

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