Bad news. Remember when I told you about my uncle (mom's uncle, actually) who had a fall in July and was in the hospital?
I called my great aunt a few weeks ago to get the real story. She was doing the best she could and said that Unc was learning to walk again, that he had been transferred to a facility closer to their home. That was about it though, she didn't give details.
It's really frustrating to have experience in health care and end-of-life issues from a clinical/academic standpoint but to not have family members who are capable of reporting the level of detail I would like. I'm not complaining about my aunt so much as my other family members, especially when I got conflicting reports.
Tonight I got the call from my sister who heard from our mum's second cousin telling us that Unc will probably not last the night. Something about his toes and foot have gone black (did he have a thrombosis? He must have, that's the only explanation. ) They made the decision to not amputate because there was only a 30% chance he would survive the surgery, and he's on his way out anyway. He's 84.
This is pretty rough. I have made peace with death long ago (and promised to write about it at one point, but didn't) and given that we have now had a month and a half to get used to the idea that Unc wasn't long for this world, this comes as no surprise.
If he does pass in the next day or two and there is a funeral this week, I won't be able to make it. Not unless the funeral is on or after September 20th. See, I have had a prior commitment for months now to look after the yarn shop while Ellie is away at a family wedding. I can't back out.
I haven't been to a funeral in 17 years. I haven't seen most of the people that will be at this funeral in 24 years. I could make the trip in about 10 -12 hours (drive, ferry, drive) and I would really like to be there.
So please, Unc, hang in there just a little longer. Is it selfish to ask this?