Leaving for a deployment and worried about Dad

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ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/11/2007 12:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Hola-
 I am new to the site but have been reading many of your postings. I hope someone can help. My Dad is 69 Y/O post liver transplant of 11 years, has had TIPS done in the last month and had a mild heart attack about 8 weeks ago. He and my Mom moved down here to TX from NY because I am a soldier here and it is a blessing to have them so close. He has enjoyed being here and playing golf 5 days a week untill about 6 weeks ago. The difference is very hard to watch. He has not been the same since the TIPS in Aug. Just yesterday he was back in the ER. He was very hard to wake up, which is unusual and he became very defiant and would not take his meds. He was very confused and not himself. He went to bed and the next morning he was hard to get up again. He could hardly speak, it was slurred and he can barely walk by himself. Doing some research on the net I knew about his ammonia levels so it wasn't a suprise tha he has HE. The tremors and all the "fun" stuff that goes with it. He has been on the Lactalose faithfully yet he is still not doing well. They said his levels are a bit elevated but not too bad.(47). If that is the case then why the sudden change? I want to know more about Neomycin, Sodium benzoate, ornithine aspartate, Lactitol and Xifaxan. He is in Hospice care and I will see him this evening. No new news today so far!! I am heading to Iraq soon and would like to know about how long this will go on or if it could drag on for years. Thank you for any assistance you all can give.

Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 9/11/2007 6:28 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Armygirlintexas, First of all I want to thank you for serving our country. You have my fullest respect. Secondly I want to welcome you to healingwell. I am so sorry that your father isn't doing so well. It must be very hard on you and your family. The Xiafan ...my husband took to help keep his ammonia levels down along with the lactalose. Near the end they didn't work any longer for him. The other meds I don't know anything about as my husband never took them. How long has hospice been involved in his care? His symtoms are exactly what my husband went through near the end. Talk with his doctor and make him give you an educated guess as to how long your father may have. If it's not long you may want to try to postpone your deployment. Does your mom have anyone to help her when you're gone? If your dad is 69... how old is your mom? I was in my early 50's and I know that I couldn't do what I did for my husband in my 60's. Take care of yourself too. My thoughts and prayers will be with you and your family.....Pink Grandma

ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/12/2007 7:43 AM (GMT -7)   

Thank You-

 Hospice has been involved for 4 days. Like I said, this all just happened so fast. Mom is 47. Still young and as strong as can be expected. Mom will have my brother here while I am gone. He is 20 and a help at times but he has his life to live and work so we don't ask him to be there much. I went to see Dad last night and he was feeling much better. He got out of bed and ate dinner with us and you could see his motor skills had improved drastically.

 His GI doc doesn't want to really say how long he has. His cardiac doc spewed out that he probably has from a month to six months. I was upset that he would tell Dad because we can always see a difference with him when the news is not good. We try to filter it before we approach him with it but.... We are trying to keep his spirits up and things to look foward to. Thank you for someone to vent to that has a clue!!


ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/12/2007 8:57 AM (GMT -7)   

Pink Grandma-

 I forgot to ask if there is a way to make the Lactalose any easier to swallow. He is such a champ at taking it but he can't stand it! He says it is like a cheap pancake syrup. I have to laugh at him. He wants me to try it and I tell him he's crazy. We put it in a smoothie and he hated it, mixed it with fruit juice and still hated it. If there are any ideas please let me know. I say we just make him cheap pancakes and pour it on thick! tongue Thanks again


Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 9/12/2007 7:03 PM (GMT -7)   
Hello Armygirlintexas, Actually there's nothing that's going to make lactalose any easier to take. We tried everything too. My husband ended just taking a straight shot to get it over and done with. At first it made him so sick to his stomach the he would thow up every time. After about a year of it he was able to keep it down. That was funny about the pancakes. :-) . I'm glad to hear that your mom is so young and you have a brother there to help when needed. Because there are going to be times that your mom will need some help. Even if it is just for moral support. Being a caregiver is about the hardest job there is? Tell your mom about this site and if she ever needs to vent, or ask questions.....we are here.
And even if it was a shock to your dad to learn in the way that he did, at least he isn't in the dark and can try to live life to the fullest as possible for him.
So when do you leave for Iraq? Hope you have a safe and quick tour of duty. My thoughts and prayers are still with you and your family. Pink Grandma

ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/12/2007 8:15 PM (GMT -7)   

Pink Grandma-

 Thanks so much. It has been a very hard day. Today he was back to being very confused and angry. Mom called a little whila ago and was so upset. She didn't call because she didn't want to bother me at work,makes me a little mad! She says that she had to call in a hospice nurse today because he didn't want to take meds. She said she woke up at 5 this morning and the shower was running and the floor flooded, she asked Dad if he had an accident and needed to shower he said no. She asked if he was planning on showering and he said no he didn't run the shower. So neeedless to say he is confused again today. He was very upset and kept asking if he is doing what he is supposed to be doing then why is this all happening. No answer of course. The Hospice told Mom what to expect and what it means whn they say "imminent". She took it very hard. I would assume that means we shoud be looking at the end being near. Not sure though. I am so angry at the family back in NY they act as if he has a cold and they have all the time in the world to get here to see him. We all know that is not the case. Mom has to go back to work on Sun. as you knoe finances are hard in times like this. I have to call Mom back tonight and check on her. We also have an appt with the funeral home in the mornin, not at all looking foward to it. Thanks for the support. Deployment is in about 6 weeks.thanks again


Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 9/12/2007 9:02 PM (GMT -7)   
Armygirlintexas I am so sorry your dad is doing so poorly. Have your mom go to her doctor and to put her off work due to stress. The only worst stress than what she is going through now is probably the death of a child. I did it when I finally brought hospice in. He lasted 3 weeks. I got State disability from the state of California. For the 3 weeks before and 4 weeks after my husband died. Also California has the family leave medical act (FMLA) that employees can file for when they or a close family member is chronically or terminally sick. If Texas has it her work should have the forms that her doctor will need to fill out. It will protect her job. Check into it. Good luck. My prayers are with all of you. sad Pink Grandma

ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/13/2007 2:13 PM (GMT -7)   

Pink Grandma-

Unfortunetly TX does not have state disability. Her job has short term disability but it is only for the employee. We are kind of at a loss as to what to do next. The agencies I have talked to all say they can't help financially. If he has income it seems that they don't feel the need to help. Any suggestion?


Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 9/13/2007 7:14 PM (GMT -7)   
Google FMLA Armygirlintexas. It is a Federal program not a state one.. At least that will save her job if see is out too much. I think I remember hearing something about getting paid through FMLA for only 6 weeks though. I didn't try it because I just went through our state disability. Check it out and see if I am correct. How's your father today? Thoughts and prayers.......Pink Grandma

hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 9/13/2007 9:12 PM (GMT -7)   
Since Bush's speech tonight, stating troops would start to be withdrawn gradually from Iraq, perhaps there is chance that you will not be sent to Iraq after all.

Connie

ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/14/2007 7:34 AM (GMT -7)   

Connie-

 I also heard his speech and can only hope and pray that it will happen. This will be my 4th time being deployed away from my family. I have been in the Army for 12 years and I just hope that I can catch a break this time, Mom will need me pretty bad soon.


ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/14/2007 7:39 AM (GMT -7)   

Pink Grandma-

 I will check that out in a little bit. Dad had an ok day yesterday. It was the night before that was a bit much on Mom. She is hanging in there. We had to go make "plans" yesterday. That was tough. This is a first for me. Haven't talked to Mom or Dad yet this morning but I will be over there tonight for a bit.


hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 9/14/2007 2:39 PM (GMT -7)   

Armygirl, I hope you will be spared another tour of duty right now.  Isn't there some sort of family medical leave you can take?  If sent overseas, I think your mind would be on your dad and how he is doing, rather than the task at hand.  That could actually be dangerous.

Keep checking in!

Connie


ArmygirlinTx
New Member


Date Joined Sep 2007
Total Posts : 8
   Posted 9/28/2007 8:18 PM (GMT -7)   

Thank you all for all the support-

Dad passed away on the 21st. I am ok with it but am very upset that they didn't tell me the truth about the last bit of time he had. I am so sad that it wasn't easy like they said. He had seizures and it was hard to see. I am sad and Mom is not doing well. She has seen her Doc and a grief counselor and I think she will be ok. I will post a note from time to time. I wish the best to everyone dealing with this horrible disease. My prayers go out to all of you-

Rosa


hep93
Elite Member


Date Joined Jul 2005
Total Posts : 12014
   Posted 9/28/2007 9:43 PM (GMT -7)   
Rosa, I'm so sorry you lost your dad, and that his death was not a peaceful one. You and your mom need to support each other in this time of grief. It was all so sudden that it is hard for you to comprehend. I think the reason nothing was said about the amount of time he had left is because they really can't predict it. At least he did not go through months--or even years--of suffering.

Please do come back here when you can, as you can be of help to others.

Hugs,
Connie

Pink Grandma
Veteran Member


Date Joined Nov 2006
Total Posts : 2445
   Posted 9/28/2007 10:42 PM (GMT -7)   
Oh Rosa I am so sorry to learn of youir father's passing. Please accept my sincerest sympathy for you and your family. Rosa, Hospice has grief meetings also. You go once a week and they last about 6 weeks. Anyone in your family can attend. Your mom will need all the support she that she can get as well as you and your brother also. It's been 5 months for me and I am still doing the 2 steps forward and one step back thing. Didn't realize that it would be a whole different than when I lost my parents or brother. Please take care of your self. My thoughts and prayers are with all of you. Pink Grandma
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