This update is a little long so please bear with me. Today was a down and up day. It started off very difficult as I arrived this morning to give Mom her breakfast. I was met there by the attending physician who was just getting ready to see Mom. He started off by telling me that we need to be prepared for end of life. He said that he considers Mom to be in critical condition and that she most likely was not going to make it. I was shocked to say the least. I told him that from everything that I saw mom was getting better. That she had started eating and talking more. He looked at me and patronizingly said, well you know at her age when someone gets sick like that they don’t usually make it. I told him that prior to her getting sick she was active, talking, walking and even went swimming a couple of weeks ago. He looked at me as if I was in denial and said, “are you sure.” I told him yes, I’m sure she may be 96 but she is very active. He then said, “well, we will give it 2 or 3 more days and if I don’t see her getting better we will just do what we can to make her comfortable.” I could not believe what I was hearing so I asked him and he repeated that they will make her comfortable for the time she has left. He then went to go examine her and was shocked to find her sitting up in a chair. He said, “oh, she is sitting up.” Then one of the nurses said, “well she is very unstable on her feet. She cannot stand without help and was not even even stable sitting up. I really felt that they had just written her off as not worth investing time or resources in. He didn’t want to hear anything I had to say. Part of the problem is that she is so hard of hearing that she doesn’t want to talk because she cannot hear them when they respond to her. I told the doctor that she is talking and that she just can’t hear, to which the nurse replied, “she has her hearing aids in.” I told them that her hearing loss is so profound that she can only hear 10-12% of what is being said even with the hearing aids. It just seemed like they didn’t want to listen to me as they had already decided that she is old and dying. I was so upset!
After they left, she proceeded to eat half a cup of soup and some fruit. The most she has eaten yet. She was alert and talking to me. After that physical therapy came in and they were so nice and responsive. They even made signs for her so they could tell her what they were doing. They got her up and she used a walker to walk five steps forward and five steps back. They were very encouraging and said she is doing so much better than last Friday when they saw her. They said they should be able to get her up and walking to the restroom in the next few days. She was pretty worn out after that so they put her back in bed. I talked with mom’s nurse and told her what the doctor said. She said she has no idea why he would say that because she is definitely getting better and now is not the time to quit. She said she would tell the doctor that. Praise the Lord for a ray of hope.
She ate okay at lunch and even then Sharon brought her sushi which she ate quite a bit of. All that to say she is getting better. Later in the day when Courtney and Elizabeth came to give mom dinner they found that the entire unit had been locked down and that no visitors will be allowed in the unit for the next two weeks. Now I was still at mom’s beside with no idea that all this was going on. Apparently three people in a neighboring ward had come down with Covid today so they were locking down the whole unit! When the nurse came in I asked her about the lock down and she told me that they had gone through the entire pandemic without an outbreak in their hospital only to have one now. She said that despite that she had gotten permission to allow one family member to come in at each meal to feed her. She told them that mom will not eat for anyone else and that we are bringing in the food that she is used to and will eat.
Now for the big prayer request. We are trying to get mom released to home health care (they call it community care) so that we can take care of her here at Sharon’s. Between the four of us we are more than able to care for her especially since Courtney and Elizabeth are both ICU nurses. The nurse said there is a meeting tomorrow morning at 9:00 am and that she would advocate for her to go home at that meeting. Pray that she will get a referral. If we don’t and try to bring her home all of the cost will be on us. Mom does not do well if we are not around and when they weren’t allowing us in she was giving up. I know she will do much better at home. Pray for favor at this meeting and they will give us all the resources we need to care for her there.
Thank you to everyone who has been praying. This was such a hard emotional day but I know that prayer got us through and even brought our nurse Emma to help mom!
Gary I. Kusunoki
Chief Executive Officer
Anchored International Relief
28241 Crown Valley Parkway Ste. F491
Laguna Niguel, CA 92677
[Heb 6:19 NKJV] 19 This [hope] we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and steadfast, and which enters the [Presence] behind the veil,