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Member since: Tue Aug 6, 2019, 12:25 PM
Number of posts: 1,403

About Me

Expat Michigander living in the middle of England.

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UPDATE: Today, I will be turning off life support for my father... (He passed away quietly...)

He's 78. Living in Arizona, west of Phoenix. I'm here in the U.K. for the past 18 years.

My mom passed away last July she was 82 - died in the ambulance following a long period of immobility and declining health. very sad, but that's another story.

My dad was hanging on, had multiple health issues. Terrible heart health - but was managing.

Unfortunately, he was under the care of my brother who is not the brightest bean in the jar.

Monday he decides to take my dad out for a "big lunch" - consisting of pot roast, mashed potatoes, gravy, coffee, and a slice of pie.

An hour later dad collapses in a gas station parking lot. Hot tarmac at noon in Arizona.

The back of his arms burning to the second degree. My brother (untrained in anything medical) attempting to do what he thinks is CPR.

The cops show up 15 min later and tell him he's doing it wrong. They take over...

The EMS team shows up and take control 15 minutes after that.. They restart his heart...

Dad is transported to the ICU. Multiple heart failures on the way.

He arrives at the hospital and my brother sends me a text (a text mind you not a phone call - WFT?) to inform me about the situation.

Now... Here I am living in the U.K. trying to manage the situation remotely with the 8hour timezone difference.

Tuesday and Wednesday are focused on life support and getting the appropriate tests done to determine the amount of damage.

Meanwhile, my brother is complaining that he can't afford to keep dad alive so he has "to pull the plug". In the meeting with the palliative care physician he starts complaining about his personal finances - WFT?

Today, this morning here in the U.K. (about 2am in AZ) I get all the tests back (MRI, CT, blood, EEG, etc.) now finally having all the info needed make a logical and empathetic decision.

It's a sad situation, but a necessary one. And one I can't be there in person to attend.

Thanks for listening... It's a small thing for the world, but I frighteningly big thing for me. Life will go on, but still... it's tough.

UPDATE: 9:30am AZ time is the planned time. My brother says he overslept and wasn't thinking he had to go - except that I told him to hear there at the hospital. Looks like my dad my die alone. At least I'll be there in spirit over the phone. I can't tell you all how angry I am at the situation.

AND THANK YOU TO ALL SO FAR. its funny (in a good way) how this little community is more family than my own family - I deeply appreciate that. I want to respond to each of you individually, but I just can't do that at the moment.

UPDATE 2: Its turning into a piss-up at the brewery. My brother has decided to call in all the opinions of extended family members (not immediate only as the law and hospital policy require!) and so now we are waiting... meanwhile my dad remains in situ. we are 2 hours behind the schedule. I was on the phone, and there my brother was cracking jokes with the med team. I could just scream. Told them to advise me when they were going to be finally ready. Still waiting... If my dad were knowledgable of this he would be spitting nails! I've resigned myself that I can no longer control the procedure in a way that provides any level of dignity. So, I quietly made my peace with the situation, hung up the phone with the Dr. agreeing to call me once they get the process going.

UPDATE 3: (Friday Morning 8am GMT) it was nearly midnight in the UK when they FINALLY started the procedure. FOUR hours of waiting for people to bring paperwork to sign, etc. There was no indication from the palliative care doctor that this was part of the process. Such ridiculous process management. Once you make the decision to terminate life support, they revert to an impersonal administrative procedure. Very little human thought or emotional empathy from the hospital. I have woken up here in the U.K. at 7am and checked for an update... It appears that my dad is still hanging on. Supposedly, he is not suffering, but it's hard to tell with so little information coming from the Med Team. Not to mention my brother's antics. This might go on for days. THANK YOU TO EVERYONE HERE! It's cathartic to be able to voice my inner frustrations and know there so many of you out there with kindness in your hearts. I hope to over time reply to each and every one's kind messages...

FINAL UPDATE: Sorry it's been a few days but it's been a bit of a rollercoaster... My father died peacefully under hospice care on Friday at 12:45am local Arizona time. As you can imagine I've been focused on cleanup of the domestic situation, financials, will, etc. It's a mess - similar to my parent's and brother's living conditions. It's a long story. My apologies in advance, I intended to respond to every message from all of you but it will take me some time. I've made my peace with the situation and circumstances, now it's just dealing with the fallout of parents who failed to plan appropriately for their death, and a parasitic brother who is only concerned with property and money. I guess we've all had a bit of that in our lives... Thank you ALL for your kind words. My words are not enough to convey my thanks.
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