I’m still in Mesa.
I made it to the funeral. It was a beautiful service and I managed to look quite presentable and I even smelled very nice and non-offensive.Â I had a great visit with all my family.Â I even got to see a blogging friend, Heather. She provided a much needed evening of relief from all the grief and sadness.Â I will post about our night when I am able to upload my photos.
I was supposed to be on my way home today, and indeed, I was packed, said goodbye to family, and my sister and I were just going to stop by to see my aunt, Regina in the ICU to say goodbye and be on our way.
I need to rewind slightly.Â For those that are confused: I have an aunt who is in ICU. Her name is Regina and she is the eldest sister of my mother.Â I have another aunt (Pauline, who is the middle sister to my mother) who just passed away from pancreatic cancer and her funeral was held on Monday morning.Â They both live here in Mesa, Arizona.
We thought my aunt Regina was actually doing very well. Despite having had a massive transfusion a few days ago, she was taken off her ventilator and was talking to everyone. She told them that she never wanted a tube stuck down her throat again.Â They were getting ready to discharge her to more of a hospice care setting as of Monday morning at the funeral.
When we went to the graveside we found out that the siblings of my aunt Regina had been called to the hospital. The minute the last “Amen” was said we took off to the hospital to see what was happening. It was all very dramatic, even for me.
Because the hospital couldn’t get a hold ofÂ anyoneÂ (Cell phones off during the service) they re-intebated my auntÂ despite this being against her and the family’s wishes.Â When everyone arrived, they called a meeting and decided to take herÂ off the ventilator.Â Then, at the last minute, another doctor came in and said that he strongly felt that this was just a hiccup in her progression and that if they gave it 72 hours to work, she could get a lot better. As they already lost their dad, Regina’s kids consulted with all the aunts and uncles and everyone felt good about keeping her on the respirator given the information that they had.
The aunts and uncles who came down from Utah (Including my parents) all said their goodbye’s and most went home yesterday.
Back to this morning.Â Â It seems that there was a lot of misrepresentation about her prognosis. That she is too sick to ever leave the hospital and that keeping her on the ventilator was prolonging pain and could be creating a much worse situation in the end.
It took most of the day and much of the night, but finally everyone got on the same page and they extebated her.Â So, now?Â We wait. They will make her comfortable and she will pass away.
I don’t want to talk about what the last 16 hours have been like.Â For one, you can’t really ever describe just how hard it hits you to see someone you love so sick and in that kind of state. It seems unreal and you just can’t know the extreme nature of it until you go in and see it.Â For another, it has all been too painful, spiritual, and emotionally exhausting to try and relay right now.Â
This day brought me back toÂ the worst day of my life and I hate revisiting it in such an extreme way.
I will say that however much hell I’ve re-lived by being in this kind of settingÂ has been worth it because I have been ABLE to go through it and still be able to give comfort to my grieving family.Â I wouldn’t have been able to set foot across the door a year ago. I would have run away from it. I just couldn’t have done it.
So.Â Here I sit.Â I don’t know when I will be home except that I know we have to get my sister home by Saturday for her daughter’s wedding reception.
I’ll try to keep in touch. Thanks for all the kind words. It helps more than I can say.
P.S. My cell phone reception sucks a duck out here. For everyone who has called, I just want you to know I see your missed calls and love you for them.Â I promise to try and get all of this out and delt with while I’m here so I am not a perpetual sad sack of crap for you all. :)