accurate transcriptions, brother, caregiving, elderly parents, family, father, health, health care facilities, home, hospital infections, hospitals, Kessler East Orange, Kessler West Orange, love, mother, physical therapy, post-surgical rehabilitation, responsibility, Rory Staunton, sepsis, siblings, sisters, surgical rehabilitation, The July Effect, twenty four hours
(The following is excerpted from my memoir-in-progress, Missing Dad. All conversations recounted here are accurate transcriptions, made at the time they occurred. All incidents described here are accurately reconstructed from contemporaneous notes and emails. No names were changed. There are no innocent people to protect.)
Nancy, Chris and Grant arrive at Dad’s at around noontime on Saturday. They settle into the upstairs bedroom where they usually stay.
Dad, Walter, Janet, Chris, Nancy, and Grant go to Kessler East to see Mom. They find her in the physical therapy room, asleep in her wheelchair. Her hair is dirty. They can barely rouse Mom, who is still wearing the clothes she was wearing when she was admitted. The therapy aide says, “Oh, she is just tired from the move”, and leaves.
Chris is standing over Mom, his hands on her shoulders, while they all wait for someone to get Mom back to her bed. He notices a bad odor coming from Mom.
“Nancy, I think Mom needs a bath.”
They mention this to the nurses. They try to get someone to shampoo Mom’s hair, in case the odor is coming from there. But it is late, and the shampoo person does not have the time.
An aide comes to move Mom back to her bed. Mom’s dinner arrives, they all stay to make sure she eats (she does, a bit). They all leave to go back to Dad’s.
They go to church, share some dinner, play a couple of games of Uno, watch a little television, and then to bed. Hopefully, tomorrow will be a better day. It will be Nancy’s birthday.
(Continued tomorrow, with the events of Sunday, July 17th 2005)
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