Friday, March 29, 2013

Our Hospice Journey/THe Journey Begins

We have started our hospice journey. After going with Richard to the doctor on Tuesday, she agreed with me that it is time to ask for hospice involvement. She made the call for me and on Wednesday we met with two of the hospice nurses here in our home. Our hospice is called Harden Hospice. Keith, a hospice nurse, came first and he sat with us and told us what hospice is about and what to expect . He started us on the reams of paperwork. Why does there always have to be so much paper work? Hospice is a benefit to us provided by Medicare, so it will not cost us anything. That was the best news ever. I am always obsessing about the cost of something.
Then came Janie, the nurse who did the history and physical. I know Janie from another jobI had. I saw her go through all the steps to become the RN she is now. She is very young. Only 22. But she is so kind and caring. I remember at the nursing home, where we both worked, how much she loved the residents. She visited with Richard about his illness and asked me what we needed equipment wise. I am so happy that we will have Janie helping us.
On Thursday, Janie returned to see how we were doing. Oxygen was delivered to the house. Richard doesn't need oxygen yet, but we are being proactive and it will be here if we need it. She is trying to get me a lift so that when he quits bearing weight (and he almost has) we can still transfer him from chair to chair or wherever we need to move him. On Monday they will deliver the remainder of supplies, ie: briefs, wipes, Emergency meds , and whatever else Janie can think of that will make our lives easier. (she estimated that Hospice can save the family almost $1000 in incontinent supplies in a 6 month period of time). I know that they are very expensive, as I have been buying them for a few months now.
We also were visited by the Hospice chaplain on Thursday afternoon. He is a retired minister from the Chicago area and moved to Hutchinson two years ago. He talked a bit about dying and then prayed with us. Richard very much enjoyed his visit.
I don't know how I feel at this point. It is starting to feel we are 'really' in the final stages. I want to document our journey.
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  1. My heart and prayers are with you Paula. Hospice workers are truly unsung Angels.

    1. Yes they are Kathe! Thanks for the prayers.

  2. Sigh..... my heart just hurts for you...

    1. Thank you April. We are doing okay right now!

  3. I walked the hospice road with my mother-in-law who lived in our house for about 3 months. They are WONDERFUL people. They are the kind of people we all should be. I would never have made it through the end with her if it wasn't for hospice. My thoughts are with you.

    (I am slowly catching up on your journey through your blog. I know that documenting my own struggles with my mom helped me a great deal. And my readers made me feel like I wasn't alone.)

    You are not alone.


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