Saturday, October 25, 2008

Returning to bad news

Although not unexpected. But still. I'm sad.

I don't know how many of you reading this (who are not my RL friends from before) have bothered to read way back in the history of blog posts here, to where you may have come across posts about my grandmother. I mean, not that you should have done so :-) but then you'd know that she's had a stroke and is quite ill. Has been for months. She had one tiny stroke at home on May 15th, or was it the 16th, and was taken to hospital, where she recovered completely. But they kept her for observation, which I don't know how I feel about, whether it was a good thing or a bad thing. While she was in the hospital that weekend she had a second stroke, a much more severe one. She wouldn't have made it if she hadn't been in hospital. As it was she survived, but she was paralysed in her left side and generally quite reduced. It was touch and go for a while. But she made it, for better or worse, and after staying in the hospital till her condition was no longer critical, she was given a room at the local old folks' home. A place where she's always dreaded ending up. She's been there since what, early June. Her condition has been going up and down ... and she's been weirdly optimistic a lot of the time ... but she has been weak and helpless constantly. Exactly what she hoped would never happen to her. :-(

This past month she's been declining pretty steadily. A few days ago, while I was in Luxor, my mother texted me to say that she - my grandmother, that is - had gotten kidney failure on top of everything else. So ... only one way this was going. :-( On Friday, my parents were supposed to come pick me up at the airport. But only my father was there, because my mother had decided to go to Alvdal (her home 'town' where my grandmother still lives). It's about a 4-5 hour drive, depending on traffic. They'd called from the home to say that they didn't think it could be much longer. So she went, and my uncle, her younger brother, met her there. She's still there now. My uncle has been with her part of the time - most of the time, to be fair - and some other relatives have been there too. My second cousin, Elin, and my secret cousin, Mette, too. I talked to her this afternoon. We talked about whether I should go up there. I called my father a couple hours ago too, and talked about the same thing. I don't know what to do, I'm torn. I'll have to call my mother again tomorrow. They both said that I have to do what I feel is right. Which is soo helpful, isn't it. >:-( I'll talk to my mother about it tomorrow, and if she wants me there, I guess I'll go. If she thinks it'll mean anything to my grandmother to have me there. But she's sleeping almost constantly now, they're giving her morphine, the contact they've been making with her has been very random and extremely limited. So it doesn't sound like she'd even know I was there. And to be honest, I don't want to go. I don't want to see her like that. It's not the way I want to remember her. :-(

My grandmother's 91 years old and until this happened has lived on her own and been very active and independent. Young for her age. :-) That's always been my image of her. I don't want to see her practically comatose in bed like that. The times I've seen her in the home have been difficult enough, in a way. But those times I talked with her, she was obviously happy to see me, she was sort of herself, although she was weak. Now, if she's not even 'there', and she gets nothing out of seeing me, won't even know I'm there ... ?

The last time I saw her - so far, I guess I have to say, I haven't decided yet - was in mid-August. It was sad ... for both of us, I think. She's had this look she's given us, when we've said goodbye to her ... she sort of had it before she got sick too, for a couple of years or so, but it's become very obvious since her stroke. This very sad look in her eyes, on her face, which made it so obvious what she was thinking - that she might never see us again. She just broke my heart with that look. But it would be so much worse to see her and not even get that.

Well, I'll be thinking. I'll call my mother tomorrow morning. It's so sad. But at the same time it will be a relief too, when it does happen ... because her quality of life now is pretty much non-existent. And it has been for the past few months. There's no point to her living like that. She's just existing. And she's had quite a lot of pain, too - not anymore, but for months she had a lot of pain, a kind of phantom pain in her paralysed side. She said that whenever the nurses or whoever touched her, it hurt her so much that she just wanted to scream. But they've had to touch her, to lift her and help her with basically everything. So ... no getting around it. :-( But it's not been a good five months for her.

OK, this is starting to get confused now. I just had to vent a little. Thanks for metaphorically listening. :-) I'm sure an update will be coming very very soon ... :-(

Here she is at the cabin ... last summer, I think. This is how I want to remember her. :-)


Truand said...

Oh dear Leisha I'm sorry about your grandma's condition =( I don't know what to say to make you feel better :S

QueenTiye said...

Dear Leisha:

I lost both my stepmother and my dad this year. You have my sincerest sympathies (you don't know me, but I linked to your Norweigan tale from my blog).


The Cog said...

your grandmother...she is beautiful.

Leisha Camden said...

Thank you, all of you.

Rose said...

Huge hugs!!! Thinking of u and your sweet grandmother and your family!!

Leisha Camden said...

Thanks, Rose. Hugs back at ya. :-)