I really can't remember much over the past several days. The bad weather has really kept us locked in the house and has kept away a lot of visitors.
Last Friday...a nurse came and checked my aunt out. Her main concern was the dry skin on her legs. She bathed them then wrapped them up. The nurse also found out why we hadn't received the supplies the past nurses had been promising....none of the things had actually been ordered. Peachy. So she put in an order for us and the stuff arrived pretty quickly.
One of the items is their Comfort Care Kit. It's a package of emergency drugs: for anxiety, nausea, pain, and more. We also got more Depends pants, large gloves, some pads and some breakfast drinks.
I don't remember what happened last Saturday. On Sunday my other cousin, R, came to spend the night. We'd already gotten some snow so K was unable to drive down, but R spends a lot of time driving back and forth across the mountains so he's used to it. Sadly, he was rather shocked by the state of his mom. Apparently K hadn't really told him as much as we were led to believe. He wanted to help, but honestly there wasn't much for him to do. It's not like he could help with the potty chores with his mom. Talk about awkward. He did run out the next morning and picked us up a few more supplies, but early in the afternoon he had to head back over the pass to work. However, his opinion was that his mom needs to go to a nursing home or some kind of facility where she could receive around the clock care. He knows K is working on this, but his opinion is that this needs to happen soon. At least he got to see his mom and see how she was for himself.
Monday....I think the main nurse, Jolene, came that day. The night before my aunt had asked me to take off the wrappings on her legs. They were bothering her. So Jolene got a good look at them and washed them once again and put some lotion on. By this time we were having some trouble getting my aunt to take her pills. We'd resorted to using Ensure for her to take them, but even that was proving difficult. Jolene discussed crushing the pills into some food, which is something other nurses have suggested. Then there was the issue of us still not getting any response from the doctor's office about the stool sample turned in over a week ago. Jolene said she'd call them so we could start treating the diarrhea. She'd also talk to the doctor in Seattle about getting something easier to take for the nausea. Later that afternoon Jolene called back and said the stool sample tested negative: no infection. Sheesh. It took them a week to find that out? And no phone call here??? WTH? Anyway, an order was being placed for a liquid medicine to treat the diarrhea.
Monday night of course, Audrey was here overnight. It was snowing and it kept snowing all night. She's a nice gal, but quite the chatterbox.
Tuesday...some snow around though during the day it melted a little. No way K could come down here on the bad roads because they got much more snow up in Seattle where they live. I believe by this time we'd resorted to using jello to give auntie the pills. She was having more and more trouble taking them. By the evening I had to give her the first dose of liquid morphine from the care package.
Wednesday...the big snow hit. Again, K couldn't come down. She also informed us Audrey wouldn't be there for overnight. So I spent another night napping in my chair. Gave auntie more of the morphine for pain. She doesn't want anything to do with the pills anymore.
Today...freezing rain and more snow. K had hoped to be down today, but since the weather didn't cooperate she's hoping tomorrow will be better. Talked with Joan, the social worker on the phone. She said she and K had discussed increasing the hours of help, which means adding someone else on to cover the nights Audrey isn't here. I gave the okay.
After K wanted me to put in an order for more morphine my aunt hasn't had any all day. In fact she's been very quiet. I've asked her several times if she's in any pain, but she either says no or she doesn't know. She also hasn't had to go in nearly 24 hours. Mom's thinking she's getting near the end. Maybe she is. It's like she's shutting down. I have no idea why her pain is seemingly gone, but it's troubling all the same. She barely talks and when she does it's in a barely there whisper. She just sits in her chair, not really sleeping mind you, just sitting there and occasionally drinking some water - half of which she spits out into a bucket. No pain complaints (or signs of it for the most part) and no potty requests. It's weird.
Everyone (the nurses, social worker, my cousin, neighbors) keep asking me how things are going. I'm not sure I can give a proper answer anymore. I keep saying okay or much the same, but they're not really, are they? It's like I've lost all perspective on the situation because I've been here all the time, watching her slowly change and degrade. Meanwhile, my mom is tired of all the phone calls and the people who keep coming here. She's also running on very little sleep. She says she's used to it, but she can't keep it up all the time. I can tell when she's running on empty and gets grouchy.
Sometimes I feel I'm in a perpetual state of tiredness. It just varies in degrees. Lately my back has been really painful from lifting my aunt up all the time or resettling her in her chair. It's taking it's toll. Woke up this morning in bed and could barely move. Not entirely a new thing for me...I had that trouble even in my own bed, but it seems worse now.
I dunno...today has been so weird and quiet. It's like my aunt is just waiting to die.