Que Sera?

I have written before about my mothers respiratory attacks. It is a terrible thing to witness some one you love struggling to breathe and be completely helpless to do anything other than dial 911. The feeling of complete impotence is overwhelming and unless you have experienced such a horrific event you can not begin to imagine the scene.

I understand that there is a machine available that is used in these instances that provide immediate relief. I am embarrassed to say that after three trips to the hospital in five months and seven weeks after her last discharge we still do not have one. We do however have an appointment to see a doctor about getting one. The appointment is still almost two weeks away.

It is five a.m.here and I am up waiting to see if we are going to the hospital again for the fourth trip in six months.The predictability of these attacks has become relatively certain. About every six weeks you can count on one.

Mom turns eighty five today and I pray that she doesn’t do it in the hospital. I am experiencing  a lot of frustration about this entire situation.

I am frustrated that we don’t have that machine. As children and caregivers we should do better.

I am frustrated that it takes two weeks to see the doctor for something that could be life saving but I guess he thinks if it takes six weeks to call it can’t be that important.

I am frustrated with my mother that she will not or can not take life just a little bit easier at eighty-five years old. Earlier this week she was in the bathroom cleaning the shower with chemicals in an enclosed area. Yesterday she was standing on a foot stool spraying the windows with window cleaner.  This being done by a woman with a history of respiratory distress. Both times I stopped her and finished the task.

Why couldn’t she ask me to do these things for her instead of me walking in after the fact. Why can’t she make a list of what needs to be done and when? Such a simple solution to avoid what could be a potentially deadly situation.

Granted that I have not been available in the past while Daddy was alive to help as much but he is gone now. Just yesterday I tried to tell her when I found her doing the windows that it was time for another attack and here we are waiting to see if we are going to the hospital.

Well she says she is fine now and that we are not going to the hospital today. When I tried to talk to her about the decisions she is making leading to her death her reply was ” que sera , que sera”,

That is a selfish response to some one who loves you and will undoubtedly be with you when the next attack occurs just like he has been with you for the last three attacks. It will be I who has to stand helplessly and stare into your eyes as you die gasping for breath unable to do anything other than pray.

It is I who will have the memory of your eyes pleading wordlessly for help that I will see every night keeping sleep at bay for the rest of my life.

Only I will carry these burdens for she will be gone and I’m pretty sure that no one else will be present. I really do not know what to do but wait for her to have another predictable attack and her cavalier attitude towards it and her refusal to not only take preventative measures against it but taking action to precipitate it not only frustrates but angers me.

Mom I love you and I wish I had written something sweet and touching for you on your birthday. Rest assured though that what is written is done so because I truly love you and want you to have the opportunity to experience many more. You now have the opportunity to live life unencumbered and to attend to no one else’s needs other than your own but I am afraid that irresponsible actions will take that opportunity away.

Please. For the sake of all those who love you. Live.

This entry was posted in end of life care giving. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Que Sera?

  1. I’m so sorry about your mom. I have asthma it’s triggered by all kinds of dumb things! I would be on ebay looking for that machine if I had to! I want to say it’s an at home nebulizer. Call another Dr or just tell the er dr. They have them there! They can prescribe them! Ask every nurse too! Good luck and I hope your mommy gets better.

  2. Thank you for your concern. We have the nebulizer. I think this is called a Bypap(?) machine. It forces air down her throat with a tremendous amount of pressure. I will call the dr. later to see if we can move the appointment up. One of the frustrating things about all this is one of my sisters IS a nurse of thirty-something years!

  3. I think that when someone gives up on living, it is never done selfishly, more, an act of mental self-preservation that unfortunately results in those who care about them feeling even more helpless than before, because they’re now the only ones fighting that fight.
    I hope your mom finds a reason to fight alongside you and that you can get that machine as soon as possible. It doesn’t sound like she’s ready to give up her independence entirely just yet.

    • You are right on point on all of your statements. How did what appears to be such a young lady as yourself garner so much wisdom?

      I knew when Dad was ready to let go. He was tired and had fought ” the good fight.” Mom is nowhere near that point.She is VERY active and the youngest 85 year old woman I have ever seen. She is doing better now since this post.

  4. sally1137 says:

    I hear ya. My mom finally gave up putting the step stool on top of the dining room table to change light bulbs just a few years ago. She HATES not being able to go shopping or drive or do the things she used to do.

    It’s as if her world is contracting to become filled only with the things she can do. She’s doing it with pretty good grace, although her social filter wore out about age 80. Now she says exactly what she wants, regardless of the consequences.

    Those B-Pap machines should be widely available, since they’re also used for sleep apnea, and a lot of people have them. If you don’t have one by now, it’s time to raise a little he-double hockey sticks with the doctor. Good luck!

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s