Thursday, February 18, 2010

Update on Dad

Dad with his friend Ray Kidd, who was killed about a month before the end of the war.

Dad almost died yesterday morning. When I arrived to help him with his breakfast, he was slumped over in his wheelchair and the staff was huddled around him. His blood oxygen had dropped to 80 (you need to have a blood oxygen level above 90 percent to stay alive) and his skin was as cold as my mother's when she died.

We got him back to bed and on oxygen and covered him in warm blankets and he rallied. But he was in and out of consciousness all day and didn't eat much, though he is drinking water.

I called my sister and she flew out to help.

Dad was hallucinating a lot all day. He had me (in his mind) shopping for car parts for his Buick most of the afternoon and kept calling out for me to be sure to see the mechanic "up the street." I assured him I would.

Late in the day he was lucid for a few minutes and said: "I think I'm losing my mind. But I think I'm going to be okay if I can stop being dizzy."

Later I had to run some errands, and two loving friends stayed with him for a couple of hours. When I came back, he woke up and I asked him how he was. "Not so hot," he said. "But I'm still here."

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