Father left this world

   / Father left this world #21  

Gator6x4

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Past Sunday morning wife and I taking one car to the mechanic. Wife is also planning a two week trip to Charleston SC with her mom that day.

Go downstairs around 0745 to check on dad. He's up going to bathroom, tell him we're leaving, be back in a couple of hours (wife and I going out for breakfast as well). He asks me to make him a cup of tea and asks me to put in the bedroom. Do that, head out with my wife around 0800.

Come back with my wife around 10AM, wife getting ready to leave, I go downstairs to check on dad.

He's on the living room laying on the carpet. He he informs me he fell (he was using the walker). Try to help him up, not working. Asks me to drag him to the couch to get up, that's not working. Ok, ambulance comes and takes him to the emergency room.

Met him at the ER around 1130.

Needless to say, he's in pain, they take him for x-rays. Turns out it's a broken pelvis (apparently the back portion which a RN explains would cause the least issues). Due to his age (90) operating is out of the question. Going to look at rehab.

Spend most of the day Sunday with him, come back Monday.

Monday morning, they look at his swallowing due to his weight (he only weighs 80lbs, but he's always been a small guy as his service weight for 20 plus years was around 120lbs). Turns out he has a issue swallowing and the majority of his food doesn't get to his stomach (interesting watching the video's they took with barium they took to watch the process). Not happy with the VA over this, long story, but moot at this point.

Had to leave for a couple of hours to do a job-site visit. Come back for another couple hours, then have to take care of the dogs as the one boy is working that day. Come back to the hospital, ask my son to take off an hour early to come in to see "Gramps".

The 3 times I was there Monday, my dad didn't seem to be doing well. Then he started seeing things in the room from time to time (using a room in the Emergency room as they couldn't find a room for him upstairs yet).

Leave the hospital around 2300 to get my paco pad from the house as I decide to sleep there on the floor (room really not designed for "guest stays" as it was in the emergency room). Doctor calls me on shift as I'm driving home. I explain that I'll be back, and asked him if my line of thinking was off that my dad doesn't look so well, and given his age, weight and he his overall disposition since being there, if coming in to spend the night was wrong. He told me my line of thinking was right. I also asked if my line of thinking of hospice instead of rehab was in line, again, he said I was seeing things the way he was seeing them.

Get back to the hospital around 2400, they now have dad on a full face mask for oxygen (when I left, they were giving him oxygen as it seemed like his oxygen level was low).

Doctor who called me comes in when I'm in the room. They ended up giving him morphine at 0100, and at 0130 we took off the oxygen mask (he was trying to rip it off before but I stopped him a couple of times because I was the only one in the room). Hold his hand for 2 hours from a chair, and I ask the one RN if I can try to lay next to him as I don't want to fall asleep away from him. Long story short, ended up on the floor after a couple of hours after trying to lay with him in a cramped up bed. Fell asleep for about an hour, woke up at 0530, and my father was gone.

What I find amazing is that Sunday late morning, my dad was alert (in pain though) and seemed fine, and in a little over 30 hours or so, he died.

Point for this long story is I never realized that falls could be deadly for the elderly.

After my dad was kind of "forced" to live with us when he fractured his back, the last year (out of the 4 he lived with us) his life was kind of sucking. He couldn't do the stairs anymore, he used a walker, and for trips to the VA and "going out", we bought a wheel chair. On more than a couple of occasions my father told me he was ready to check out. My dad will be the first to admit that mom was the brains of the outfit, and when mom died in 2002, no one in our family (including me) to have dad live another year without my mom being around. For another 15 years, he actually did great, fly fishing in Alaska and Montana on a regular basis, as well as golfing in SC with his golfing buddies (still remember when he was in his early 80's complaining that he'll never golf another 36 holes in one day LOL).

I told him Tuesday morning that mom was waiting for him and it was time for him to leave this world and I that I loved him and thanked him for being such a great father to me. I was a ******* as teen, and we hated each back then. Wasn't until my mid 20's that I realized how right he was.

All things considered, his quick death was a blessing. Caring for him was getting progressively harder, and we were discussing in home health care options as we didn't even want to think about assisted living, as my wife was certain that would kill him.

Thing is, going downstairs to the basement now feels totally strange knowing he's not there.

He had a great life. Retired from the air force in his 40's (traveled the world and took us with him sometimes), retired after another 15 year gig in commercial insurance, then worked for the state for another 10 years, then in his 70's work at a fly fishing shop so he could get trip deals and fishing gear LOL Married for 40 years, loved his wife until she left this world, and was a better man than I could ever hope to be.

Only thing I need to do now is get his ashes up to Indian Town Gap so he can be laid with mom.

Also need to make up to my wife. She was upset that I forced her to leave with her mom on Sunday. This trip had been long planned though, and she needed some time with her mom IMO. We talked, she understands why I made her leave, but I also now understand that she has always loved my dad like he was hers. She'll be coming home a week early, and hopefully her aunt will go to where they're staying so her mom can stay the full 2 weeks.
So sorry to hear of the loss of your father. I lost my wife of 62 years around 7 am on the morning of May 25th, 2022 ten days after her birthday. She won a battle with Breast Cancer in the 90's but the diagnosis of Dementia in 2014 was terrible news. To monthly, or daily watch the progression of this insidious disease knowing my wife although fighting a courageous battle was fighting a battle she could not win was saddening and depressing.

One morning the later part of March she got up off a portable commode and fell while I was in the bathroom. As a result of the fall she broke her right leg just above the knee. She was taken to the Hospital by Ambulance and a steel rod and pins were put in her leg and sent back home four days later in an Ambulance. The Doctor advised therapy in his opinion was not a treatment she could do, tolerate or understand and she would be better off at home continuing to receive treatment from me and the Hospice Care Givers.

The Hospice Care people and myself kept her alive until the morning of May 25th when she passed.
 
   / Father left this world
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Sigarms

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Thanks guys for the condolences, but in all seriousness, although sad at that moment in time when he passed, the reality is as mentioned, this was truly a blessing.

You had a very active man up until he fractured his back at age 86, and this last full year had been nothing but a ***** for him due living here to his overall declining health.

2 months ago I brought him upstairs for all you can eat crab legs, one of his favorites. He told me when I was helping him to bed that same night, that the dinner was perfect and it was a great day. Honestly, if he would have died in his sleep THAT night, it could not have been more perfect to a perfect day.

I highly doubt that he was up to putting in the time and strength for rehab. As mentioned, more than a couple of times he said he was ready to check out during his last year in life and he was tired with all this crap per his slowing down.

Please note, even though we hated each other, the hate only lasted until I moved out of the house LMAO! When my mom passed in 2002, talking to him in 2003, I offered to move back home to be close to him and actually had it all lined up with my company at the time to move back to Pa to either be near him. He told me that although he would like that, he couldn't live with himself to see me move back just to be close to him, so I stayed in NC. After I got married and we bought a house in 2005, the reason for the furnished basement was for my father, but the thing is, it took him 13 years and a fractured back to move down LOL

Thing is, my dad had a lot of golfing buddies and the guy who he worked for at the fly fishing shop was actually a good friend of his (as well as a good friend of mine as he got me into whitewater kayaking 40 plus years ago).

Wonder if your dad fell because something was already accelerating his decline and the first sign was it also caused his fall. So, the other way around. To me, that makes a difference in agonizing over his fall while alone vs mourning that it was his time to go.

I'm really not agonizing over his fall. In some crazy way, there is a part of me that feels like God may have had something to do with it, but the reality is there would have been other ways God could have gotten involved ;) When I found him, other than being sore, he was actually in pretty good spirits. I truly believe it was a blessing he went so quick after that fall. Reality is he could have been stuck in a hospital bed much longer and he could have gone through more pain. Added reality is when people die, sometimes it's not pretty depending on much drugs you can put into their system.

When mom died and I was in Virginia with him, they had to remove the air tube at our request. My father couldn't do it and told me I had to. I was there with my mom when they removed the tube, and the doctor warned me she could go quick or she could last "a while". She basically died within a minute of them pulling the air tube, and I look at that as the same, a blessing.

If I'm with my dogs when the vet finally has to put them down, I'm darn well going to be there for my parents. I'm blessed that I was able to be there with them both of them when it was their time to leave. I got one full day to talk with my mother in the hospital bed before she "went" that same night. Made a promise to her that I'd look after dad because she knew her time was coming and she was so afraid he couldn't live by himself when she was gone. It was an added blessing that my dad surprised everyone and lasted as long as he did. He really did have a great life, and although I miss him, I'm at peace with the way everything played out.
 
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Sigarms

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So sorry to hear of the loss of your father. I lost my wife of 62 years around 7 am on the morning of May 25th, 2022 ten days after her birthday. She won a battle with Breast Cancer in the 90's but the diagnosis of Dementia in 2014 was terrible news. To monthly, or daily watch the progression of this insidious disease knowing my wife although fighting a courageous battle was fighting a battle she could not win was saddening and depressing.

One morning the later part of March she got up off a portable commode and fell while I was in the bathroom. As a result of the fall she broke her right leg just above the knee. She was taken to the Hospital by Ambulance and a steel rod and pins were put in her leg and sent back home four days later in an Ambulance. The Doctor advised therapy in his opinion was not a treatment she could do, tolerate or understand and she would be better off at home continuing to receive treatment from me and the Hospice Care Givers.

The Hospice Care people and myself kept her alive until the morning of May 25th when she passed.
I'm sorry what you had to go through. You're also a very good man and husband.

My mother in law and her sister had to go through somewhat the same scenario with their mother because their father couldn't do it by himself. At the end, their mother spent a month in hospice, and it really ticked their father off, but there was really nothing else that they could do over time because they were spending every day at their parents house taking care of their mother, and some days she wasn't really easy to deal with.

Why when I look at my dad, reality is all the way around, was blessed the way he played out.
 
   / Father left this world #24  

Gator6x4

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I'm sorry what you had to go through. You're also a very good man and husband.

My mother in law and her sister had to go through somewhat the same scenario with their mother because their father couldn't do it by himself. At the end, their mother spent a month in hospice, and it really ticked their father off, but there was really nothing else that they could do over time because they were spending every day at their parents house taking care of their mother, and some days she wasn't really easy to deal with.

Why when I look at my dad, reality is all the way around, was blessed the way he played out.
Thank you. My wife also had days she was difficult to care for. After providing care for my wife especially the last two years of her life, I hope that I go like my father did with one heart attack.

Losing my wife of 62 years was harder on me than the loss of my parents, two brothers and a sister, grandparents, uncles, aunts, nieces and nephews and mother and father in law, bother in laws and sister in laws.
 
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Torvy

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Sig, I am so sorry for your loss. In many ways it feels like we had the same dad. I saw mine this summer, most of it at the VA. Not sure I will ever see him alive again. He's also 90 and retired USAF.

I know it was hard caring for him. The flip side was you got to spend more time with him.

For those who dislike the VA. I hear you, but some are better than others. The staff at the VA in Sioux Falls has been great.
 
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For those who dislike the VA. I hear you, but some are better than others. The staff at the VA in Sioux Falls has been great.
I completely agree on your point.

I just got lucky on where they took my father this past Sunday. The EMT's who came out suggested this place due to their past experiences overall (we had the choice of where we wanted to take him, and I would have never guessed this place that was actually closer than the two major hospitals in Winston Salem). I'm sincerely glad they did, at first I was worried, but the short time there, they were absolutely great to deal with.

I've learned from experience that the civilian world is no different than the military world, and the same can be said for any large organization made up a bunch of people. People, not the building or "company" make the difference.
 
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buckeyefarmer

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Sorry for your loss sigarms.
 
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Sigarms

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Sorry for your loss sigarms.
Thank you (and to all the other replies).

End of the day, we ALL go through the same thing.

It's odd with my dad though. I'm actually happy for him.

I remember being with my grandmother when she went in 1976. With my mom in 2002, and now my dad in 2022.

Time waits for no man or woman, and we will all be there in the exact same spot.

I still remember many forum members here who have passed as well, and even caught a "Zombie thread" that way.
 
   / Father left this world #29  

buckeyefarmer

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It’s tough, prayers for the family.
 
   / Father left this world #30  

old and tired

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...Point for this long story is I never realized that falls could be deadly for the elderly...
Very sorry for your loss... but my thinking is that the fall is from the body giving out due to whatever. Even if he didn't fall, his body was most likely failing or declining. I watch my dad pass away and had to take my mother off life support, when it time, it's time.
 
 
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