My Granddad ended up in the hospital a few nights ago. Now he is at Hospice House. We are waiting for his evaluation to be complete to see what happens now. From my understanding, he has stopped eating. I think he had some ice cream a few nights ago. That's it. How much longer can a person last if they aren't eating? ='( I'm not sure. I don't know whether to hope things turn around for the better, or .... God forgive me.
My Grandmother has been an amazing pillar of strength during all of this. The whole family has just been in awe of her I think. I know I have found a new, deeper respect for her. But she isn't going through this unscathed. She has some health issues too. And I can only imagine, when my Grandfather's journey is over, what kind of toll it will have taken on her.
I ran across this article online today: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/02/09/couple-dies-hours-apart-a_n_1266152.html?1328822666&icid=maing-grid10%7Chtmlws-main-bb%7Cdl3%7Csec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D134363 . In it is says, and I quote:
"A study published in 2007 by researches at the University of Glasgow found that bereaved widows or widowers were at least 30 percent more likely to die within the first six months of their partner's death than those of the same age who hadn't lost a spouse."
Where has my head been!!??!? We all knew this was our last Christmas with our Grandfather. But it never crossed my mind it could possibly be our last with her too. (Not that I'm saying that it WAS. I just never allowed myself to go there and have that thought)
My family has lost many people, including my father and two cousins. When my last cousin died (God rest his soul), it hit my Grandmother very hard. Harder than I think I even let myself realize. Apparently, there were a few in the family were worried about her. Now she is losing her husband of over 60 years, her best friend and life partner. If her heart is acting up like some fear, I worry about the study listed above, and what that could mean for my Grandmother.
It was a worry I hadn't ever allowed myself to have before. I just assumed we'd have some years left with her. And we still may. She has shown herself to be an incredibly strong woman. We always knew she has been. But the strength and dignity she has had through this whole process with her husband has been astounding. So there is still a very good chance we have many good years left with her. I do hope so.
I guess this article was just a shock and jolt to my system. Sometimes, I guess, we all have realities we don't want to face. And this new reality is that my Grandmother, as awesome and super as she is, is not super human. She will not live forever. (again, where was my head at?) I guess I should be thankful that my eyes have been opened. I need to cover her in prayer even more. Maybe that's why I ran across it. I don't know.
Father, I just life my family up to you. We don't know how much time is left for anyone, but you do. Help us, please, to always make the most of the time we have with those we love. Help us to not take life for granted. Please continue to wrap my family in your loving comfort. I pray you will continue to give my Grandmother and Grandfather strength and grace during this difficult time, as well as their daughters. When the time comes, it's my prayer that my Grandfather go peacefully and without pain. Protect my Grandmother and don't take her before her appointed time. Please. I lift my family up to You. You know best what is needed. Meet our needs during this time. In Jesus' Name, Amen.