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                in pursuit of a fruitful life

               

Monday, September 18, 2006


I haven't posted since last week because I scurried out of town when I heard my grandmother had a stroke.

She turned 93 this summer, so the phone call wasn't entirely unexpected, but still, for most of her life, my grandmother enjoyed remarkably good health. Not perfect health, but pretty darn good. My mother has worked abroad for the past few years and us kids are spread out around the U.S., but with the help of friends, my grandmother managed to stay in her own home on a beach in North Carolina until she was almost 90. Pretty good, huh?

She went into a North Carolina nursing home with the hopes that a brief stay would help her bounce back. She slowed down even more, however, became depressed about the situation, and finally started to drift mentally. At 92, she gave up hope of returning home and agreed to move to a nursing facility near my sister in Florida. When my sister reviewed and researched my grandmother's prescriptions, she discovered that Grandma was overmedicated. Grossly overmedicated. For instance, the North Carolina doctor had said he would replace one of her prescriptions because she was having trouble with it, but instead of replacing it, he had doubled it and added on the replacement. My sister isn't a fan of allopathic medicine to begin with, so you can imagine how well that bit of news went over.

Under my sister's wing in Florida, Grandma got off some of those nasty meds and came back to life. She grew stronger, more mobile, and more herself. On her 93rd birthday, Grandma was happier, more capable, and more with it mentally than she had been on her 92nd birthday. She never regained conciousness and died about 24 hours after the stroke.

I don't have a digital photo of Grandma, so this tree in the Upper Peninsula will be a stand in. I found this peaceful tree on a hot July day in a remote part of Sylvania Woods. We hiked back on what turned out to be a deer path. Other than one car that passed by on the road, all we could hear was the wind rustling through the trees, a few bugs buzzing about, and the crunch of leaves under foot.

3 Comments:

Blogger Theresa said...

So sorry to hear about your grandmother. I hope you and your family are doing well.

12:34 AM  
Anonymous Marianne said...

Your Grandmother sounds like a beautifully lovely soul, long may she live..in the hearts and minds of all her family and friends, I have a very strong feeling she will. The photo of the tree is beautiful and a most graceful 'stand-in'. I, too, have all kinds of issues with all the medications given to our people, our elders, more often than not they cause more problems, it's shameful.
Have raised my needles, here's to your Grandma.

7:43 AM  
Anonymous Marianne said...

BTW, your new fig photo at the top of your blog is beautiful, simply beautiful.

4:30 PM  

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