Sunday, September 18, 2011


Today seemed to be another status quo day. Mom is clearly weak-if she wants to sit on the side of the bed, as she usually does for meals, she needs to have pillows propped behind her to support her back and keep her upright. When she gets up to walk to the bathroom, we need to help her stand and keep her stabilized-I've taken to standing directly behind her when she washes her hands at the sink. She likes this, saying she's being supported by the Pea. And it is fine, it's just so many degrees behind where she was at my last visit.

It continues to be a struggle to breathe. Her oxygen machine is set to the highest amount it can give, 5L, at least a few times throughout the day. We all constantly remind her to take deep breathes through her nose (as that's where the oxygen tube is) to relieve shortness of breath and hopefully keep her as comfortable as possible. Though her lung capacity is the same or diminishing, she hasn't had the disorientation or confusion that I saw during my first night with her. Last night when she woke up coughing at 4am, she was 100% alert and requested her inhaler immediately, which I gave her and her breathing got easier.

Before turning in for the night last night, she requested oxycodon, the first time I've seen her take a full dose. I asked her where her pain was, concerned that it was in her chest again, and she just said "all over." I think there's a lot of general achiness and discomfort due to being in bed all the time now-her tailbone and lower back are often very sore. She asked me to help her stretch this morning, which I did, but she quickly realized it was uncomfortable and requested an ankle and calf massage instead. We did both, but the limitations of her muscles was a surprise to her.

Her appetite is low and she's tired a lot. She had a busy morning with visitors, but fell asleep for a champion nap from 3-6pm, which was great. She dozed on and off before that, but this was real sleep, which she needed.

I'm very excited to have Gary arriving tomorrow evening, everything is so much more manageable for me when he's around.

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