Yesterday was very difficult. Because Dr. Smith (the incompetent doctor) didn't respond to five telephone calls over a five hour period, we had to delay hospice for an extra day. Talk about a selfish "a**hole." Then the hospice representative was three hours late; it was a true emergency and she was very apologetic.
She was also very competent and empathetic. When she called to get directions, she could hear mother moaning in the background. Upon her arrival, she immediately ordered morphine for the pain, and within three hours had a nurse at my mother's side to administer it.
Still, it was a terribly long and painful day. On my way to Casa del Mar I picked up a song book at the guitar shop of folk songs from my youth that my mother loves. To calm my mother down, I played the autoharp for three hours or so. I had read that even when a person is totally out of it, they can still hear. I was sure that my mother heard the love in my voice, and it was very healing for me to sing as well.
In between I cradled my mother's head in my arms, and kissed her. She didn't respond, but it seemed to calm her down. However, sometimes she opened her eyes and when I looked into them, she seemed so frightened to me...or maybe it was the pain.
I sure hope this decision for hospice is the right one. I can't imagine mama would want to continue to live this way, but I also don't believe that we should make "God-like" decisions.
I know what I want for myself, and my husband and I have decided to make our decisions now and write them all down. But my mother (and my father) didn't want to discuss death and dying so it's all so very difficult.