Yesterday plans were made to start paperwork to admit Mathew to palliative care. This was for pain management purposes only. I spoke to Extramral in the morning and met the new nurse, Tracy, by phone. When I mentioned Mathew’s headaches she asked if I had made an appointment to take him to the family doctor yet.
She is new to Extramural, having come from the hospital, so is still on a learning curve. I replied that Mathew hasn’t been out of the house in 2 months and he just was not going anywhere near the doctor’s office. About the same time I heard our previous nurse talking to her in the background. She then mentioned she would sent a note to the family doctor.
The family doctor’s office then called here, asking me if I was aware of what Extramural wanted to do (raise eyebrows here). I replied we did know and were part of the decision. So she hung up to give the doctor the note.
The doctor’s office called back around noon, asking for a list of everything Mathew is taking. The doctor wanted to check it over to see if any combination of drug could be causing his headaches. I told Dr. Poirier’s nurse that Mathew’s pain isn’t managed either; that is to say, he still feels pain when on maximum meds.
Not too long after that the new Extramural nurse, Tracy came in for the weekly visit and to flush Mathew’s port. We weren’t encouraged to hear she had only ever accessed one other main line. Eek. Mathew’s port is notoriously hard to find at times and has stymied the best IV team at times. Fortunately his previous nurse came along to instruct Tracy how to do the procedure.
It went smoothly ~ Mathew’s port sits right under the skin surface now and even I can feel the three dots on the port’s surface. The needle must be inserted in the middle of those dots to access the line that runs from the port to his artery. It was quick and painless.
While the port flushing went well, the visit did not. Mathew knew about the planned hospital admittance and was not happy about it. He was very stressed and acted rather unkindly towards the nurses, who do understand his fear. Mathew wants no part of the hospital as it holds such awful memories of treatment.
After the nurses left Mathew started to calm down. He decided to eat again, thinking the lack of food might contribute to his headaches. No they don’t, but I agreed with him and was delighted to see him eat two meals yesterday. John brought some KFC popcorn chicken home for Mathew and we all watched a little bit of the Wrestlemania pay-per-view that was taped on Sunday night. Mathew sat in his chair and ate,, lasting for 2 fights. We will watch more once he feels up to it again.
Extramural left a message on our phone which we didn’t see until later in the evening. Our family doctor called them back supporting the proposal to hospitalize Mathew for a few days.
John decided to stay home today and took the night shift from me so I could rest. Early this morning Extramural called with a brilliant idea. Rather than have Mathew go to the hospital, they will put in a referral for the palliative care doctor to make a house call here. We were thrilled by the prospect and Mathew gave me a huge smile when I told him. This could take up to a week to happen but we are fine with waiting a little. If that wonderful palliative doctor can, indeed, visit us again that would be great news.
The last couple of days were up and down; it is very hard when Mathew loses his mind however briefly and understandably. He is sleeping today, exhausted, and wondering why. I raised my eyebrows (again) and reminded him of his extremely stressful day yesterday. Today is recovery day.
It snowed a tiny bit last night. I long to see the first bits of spring; to feel a mild, sunny day on my face and to hear the early birds twitter and tweet through the trees. It feels like we have all been through a long haul this winter.
Next week Kristen is coming home for Easter! That always cheers us right up! I didn’t check to see if she is flying in to Fredericton or Moncton this time. She got one of the last seats on Wednesday night’s flight, whew!
I slept until 3 pm today. Yes, I was tired! Stressed by putting Mathew in the hospital, even if for good reasons.
All is well, for now. I am in better spirits than the last post. It is a roller coaster ride and anyone who thinks otherwise is kidding themselves.