Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Holding Pattern

I'm in a bit of a holding pattern again, at least for a day or so.  I have a lot to do and I'll be busy, but it looks like I'll be hitting the road again - I just don't know exactly when.

I'll be headed north, but this time not for my dad, though I may visit him.  My uncle, the husband of my beloved aunt, the both of whom I stay with when I go north, has reached the point where his days are few.  He was taken to the hospital Saturday night with breathing difficulty.  My aunt had been saying for days that he was having more trouble breathing and getting up and down, but they had been carrying on as usual after he rallied a bit from using oxygen for awhile.  It was a different story upon going to bed Saturday night, so she took him to the emergency room.  His lungs were filling with fluid and an x-ray revealed a dark area behind his lung(s) - but unsure if it is pneumonia or what.  Up in the air is when he'll be able to go home on hospice care and what exactly that will entail.  The hospital (or insurance) there has a maximum "in hospital hospice care", then they have the patient transported home on hospice and on "comfort care".  They have a meeting with the Dr. today, so they will be better informed as to what's what with him and his care and the expectations.

In the time since I was last in Oregon, my aunt & I chat daily, his memory issues (he has dementia far more advanced than my dad's) have worsened and his overall health declined.  He also has congestive heart failure and another issue that's been treated for a number of years.  He is 83 and has led a long, good life.  He's a good man.  He has a unique, hearty laugh and upbeat spirit, though in recent years that laugh has not been as robust as when he was young and healthy.  His example gave me a love for crossword puzzles.  He has always been loving and welcoming of my visits.  He and my aunt have had 52 years together.  He is 10 years older than she.  They have three great children, my cousins, and six sweet grandchildren.  Some of their kids & grands live right next door, others a mile away and the furthest no more than 20 miles away.  

My cousins have been great with helping their mom & dad, but they need to get back to work, so my aunt has expressed her desire in my coming up to help and appreciation for me to do so.  

Please, if you think of it, pray for my aunt and my cousins as my uncle heads into his final days, and for him.  Also for me as I'll be driving, probably within a couple days.  I'll know more later today, but I have much to do, so I'd best get to it!

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