Mary has been hanging in there. She’s had some good days and some not so good days – but we continue to work to help manage her pain and symptoms. It feels like every week we say “we think we got her pain and symptoms under control” and then she crashes and has a few difficult days. But numerous things changed today, with the guidance of our hospice nurse, and we’re hoping that this will finally give Mary some reprieve.
Mary’s pain management has been hit or miss. Some days her usual regiment keeps things under control, but then there have been days where nothing seems to aid in her pain. She has been taking morphine every few hours, but there are times that doesn’t really seem to help – especially when her pain is already bad. So our nurse suggested we transition Mary to a pain pump, so she’s regularly getting a “boost” of pain meds and she has easy access to push a button for more – if she has any lingering pain.
Mary has been having more and more difficulty getting around, but we’ve still been able to help her get out to the porch. She’s still able to walk a few steps, but we usually help her get into the wheelchair and wheel her our and carry her down the few steps to the screened in porch. It’s a team effort, but usually one of the kids and Bill is around to help get her out to the porch. Mary loves watching the birds, people walking their dogs, and neighbors out doing yard work.
Since it’s gotten more difficult for Mary to move around, the nurse also recommended that we transition Mary to using a catheter. That way she doesn’t have to worry about having to use her energy to try to get to the bathroom or stress about not “making it in time.” The nurse also recommended that Mary be mainly bedridden from now on. Mary can still make it out to the porch, but we will need to wheel her out there and carry her out – just to keep her from falling or suffering from another injury.
So after today’s visit with the nurse, Mary will be on a pain pump 24/7 that will hopefully help us (finally!) manage her pain – fully. And she will be mainly bedridden and will be using a catheter instead of having to get up to go to the bathroom.