(NOTE: Photo at left from my parent’s wedding day (18 June 1948). Leaning over my father’s shoulder is his father, Reverdy Lewin Orrell Sr.)
Yesterday (Thursday) was a rather good day for my father. In the morning Nora arrived with a ‘egg crate mattress’ which we added between the mattress of the hospital bed and the sheets. My father said it was much better and softer on his back. We have noticed that brusing has started under one arm, which is the beginning of bed sores. We are trying to turn him every few hours and put him in a different position.
Also Nora came up with the idea of using a different foam wedge at the bottom of the bed. It is rather sturdy and will allow him to use what strength he has to try and straighten up a little and to keep from sliding down the bed.
We have also found that raising up the bottom part of the hospital bed, also helps out.
Getting him into the bathroom yesterday was a struggle. Even on Saturday, he was able to shuffle his feet to the bathroom. We used a desk chair, with wheels, to bring him back. He was able to help in transferring his weight, until yesterday.
He talked on the phone to his brother, Gloria (a close friend), Larry Stein (a longtime friend from the Masonic lodge, and Reds Goble (his best friend for close to 70 years).
His sister, Mary Jahnigan, came around for a few hours.
Also, my mother’s sister, Dorothy Kunsman, her daughters Pat, and Bonnie, and Pat’s daughter Michele came over for about an hour.
Dad sat in a chair for a few hours yesterday, where he received his i.v.
My son came over after work. He showed my father another unbelievable photo of his son, taken during another sonogram. This was actually better than the DVD, as you could clearly see the baby’s face. When I get access to a scanner, I’ll post.
When Reb left he told me to tell my father that the baby’s name would definately be Jackson Reverdy Orrell. You should have seen the look on his face when he heard that.
Later, he started to run a fever, but it didn’t last. He slept quietly last night, but every time he made a sound, I jumped up from the sofa.
The ‘new’ Hospice nurse arrived this morning and spent about an hour examining my father and talking to us. He was exactly what he had heard about Hospice and their staff; completely unlike what we experienced on Wednesday. Nora called Hospice yesterday and requested a different caregiver and gave the full reason why, when asked. I won’t go into that now.
This morning was father didn’t perk up as he has the last several mornings. He went right back to sleep after I gave him his 8 AM pills.
His voice is very weak when he speaks, but he is in no pain whatsoever. That’s all we can ask for.
He told Nora and my mother yesterday, that when he goes to sleep at night he sees what he thinks are people. He hears them talking, but can’t understand what they are saying. He has also said that heaven must not want him. Nora told him that all the ‘paperwork’ hasn’t been done yet and all the relatives and loved ones in heaven must be rounded up and be ready to greet him. He smiled at that.
I notice that when he does open his eyes and look about he looks at a photo of his parents, one of Reb, Sara, and my parents, and his favorite photo of my mother. He then looks for his masonic coin. Also he stares at a large photo on the wall of ‘Pitiful’, his dogs of many years.
The Hospice nurse said, that while he is very weak, and his pulse seems to be dropping, he isn’t quite ready yet. He still has lucid moments, most of the time. He says this could go on for several days.