A Skippers Tale XXXII

Run Aground.

When we last spoke, Dad was doing his dangdest to be stubborn and not eat.  The good news is, that didn’t last long.  Once the Nurses were made aware of Dad’s shenanigans they made sure that someone sat with him while he ate his meals.  This however was not before they discovered the plastic bag that he had been hiding various food bits in… open food bits… several days old open food bits…. oh yes… and his mobile phone!  I’m not sure that Samsung covers for moldy yogurt damage <<roll eyes>>

Honestly the reason I haven’t posted anything lately is the simple fact that there wasn’t that much to tell until recently.

We are still waiting to see if we can get a placement for Dad in a facility, but it’s like pulling teeth.  One care place had the audacity to suggest that as we owned our home we could sell it to get Dad into a private placement…. um, we still live here… well you can rent can’t you?  Oh FFS!

Other suggestions have been made including we could perhaps get a Mortgage on our place.  Now, while our home would probably provide suitable equity the problem would be neither Mum or I currently have a ‘wage’ to speak of, and I don’t care how nice and friendly the banks may seem… there ain’t no WAY they would come a half a million mortgage even if we were both working!

Setting aside the concerns I have for Dad, Mum has been foremost on my mind for the last week or two.  As some of you may know, we nearly lost Mum to Pulmonary Embolisms and Atrial fibrillation last August.  So, congestion on the lungs for Mum is dangerous… she’s already been admitted post issue once with pneumonia.  So when Mum developed a deep rattling cough I had to badger her into going and seeing her Doctor who put her on a course of antibiotics.  Mum and antibiotics have a very tempestuous relationship… neither one likes being in the others ‘presence’ for any period of time.  I swear her Guts break out the little white flags after the first couple of days and say enough is enough… Add to this about the time this flared up Mum had a blood work up done as part of her annual tests, to find that her Diabetes was higher than usual, so her specialist put her on soluble diabetes meds that came with a warning that it could do a number of the stomach… Suffice to say Mum was not a happy camper.

Her normal GP put her on the non soluble version of the tablet in a hope that it would stop the upset tum, but it did no good.  Now, during all this, I noticed a couple of things… 1) Mum was complaining of blurry vision, 2) her thirst was constant, 3) she would feel light headed.  I finally got her to do a prick test with her kit only to find that her sugar levels was up around 24!  Shite!  If she hit 8 or 9 in was commented on by her GP.  So Friday just gone I said enough was enough and made an appointment for Mum to see her GP… this was getting ridiculous… at the rate things were going Mum was going to end up in Hospital herself.  (Upside, I could have perhaps asked for them to have adjoining beds!).

So through this all, while caring for Mum, we were trying to get in to see Dad as much as we could.

So today when we went in, Mum got bailed up by one of the nurses to say that we weren’t coming in often enough!  All I can say is that I am very glad that it was Mum and not I that was lectured to, because I think I would have given the nurse a smack in the gob if she’d come at me with that.  Like we aren’t guilty enough about not being able to be there with Dad more often!

Like it doesn’t tear us to go in to see a man who has been so robust in his life only to find him so frail and diminished.  He now need someone to help feed him and two people to help him move and get his ablutions done and we were told today that they had to send him down for a chest x-ray because sometimes his swallowing reflex wasn’t working fully and that water was getting down into his lungs.

We don’t even know if he can remember our names… when we ask him if he knows who we are he says yes, but doesn’t say our names….

Talking to the doctor this afternoon, he is going to speak to the palliative team about Dad’s situation to see if the whole fiasco of getting a care placement is even going to be needed.

And to top this all off, I was advised yesterday by Dad’s case officer, that DVA isn’t going to accept our claim over this tumour as according to an independent oncologist “This type of tumour wasn’t associated to the patients service”  Despite the fact that the Navy accepts that Dad was routinely exposed to hazardous materials including the likes of Asbestos, Lead Paint, Diesel, Ionizing Radiation etc.  So now I have to wait until that arrives and start trying to dig up examples, cases and numbers of veterans who have been diagnosed with this type of tumour as we are already aware that anacdotally there is a higher prevalence of it in service men.

Anyway… I am waffling and I am tired… so I will wrap this up for this evening and thank you all for reading.

On the subject of visiting.  It is just not feasible for Mum and I to make a trip into see Dad for every day of the week and so we would like to encourage anyone who might have a bit of time and be around the Nedlands area to drop in and say hi to him… we can’t be sure that he will remember your visit the next day, but I think it would be stored somewhere in his deep memory and it would help us out no end.

much love

Yoli (and Barb)


3 thoughts on “A Skippers Tale XXXII

  1. Dear Fred, Barb and Yoli 🙂
    Our thoughts are with you during these extremely tough times. It’s been a few years since I last saw Fred & Barb at a SAAWA function due to living abroad. Thank you for the aptly named blog, I’ve been following since Cid sent his first update regarding Fred’s diagnosis. The Australian Palliative Care system needs a significant overhaul, what a ridiculous joke, sell the house out from under your feet.
    Thinking of you all, Mike and Kathryn Russell, Kuala Lumpur.

  2. Hello Barb and Yoli,
    I’m saddened to hear that Fred is not travelling to well. Fred and I joined JRTE Jan 1961 and. Fred was one of the first come and befriend me, we have remained in contact and good oppos ( Mates) ever since , now some 54 years ago a great and compassionate shipmate. My wife Faye and I will continue to pray for Fred yourself Barb and Yoli.I intend paying Fred a visit tomorrow.God bless you all Hec & Faye Hogan

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