© 2010 Lynsey

340 – The touch

These are the hands of the women I love. Each of us have had our world turned upside down today. My mum was given 1-3 hours to live last night subsequent to a massive stroke. This morning Mum was still with us and Marica and I’ve made a tense three hour drive to the hospital to say hello. Good-bye. To find out what’s going on. Or, more accurately, not.

We asked to see a doctor at 1:00pm – we left at 6 – still waiting to see a doctor. The reason we couldn’t see one was it’s the weekend. Apparently at the Whanganui Hospital weekends start on Thursday night. Mum’s on the Liverpool Care Programme (LCP) which seems to be more like a lingering death than any valid way of easing the passing of a person. I don’t understand the advantages of dragging the departure point out – when I raise the alternative I’m told this is murder. I was raised with hunting all around – the object of this is to make the time between life and death the minimum time possible. I don’t understand how quick is murder but slow is mercy.

Mum rallied this afternoon and asked a nurse, “I’d like a cup of tea and soft scrambled eggs; and if you don’t know how to make them my son here does.” Which is true, I do. Agony agony agony. Mum kept asking over and over and over for a cup of tea – like it was the most precious thing in the world. The LCP is about dehydrating the victim to death. It makes some sort of sense when a person is actively dying, Mum was asking for a cup of tea and food. Usually when you’re unwell food is not uppermost on your mind. We managed to get some thickened water into Mum and she improved a little more.

Strangely, I met up with a couple of former students in the hospital. I feel a bit better knowing people I know are nearby.

I don’t know what to do. Not I don’t know what to do for best. I don’t know what to do. We’re numb. We need sleep.

39. Every day trust that there is a bigger picture. You are a part of it even if you may not know what it is.
47. Every day you are responsible.
50. Every day has an ending.