Well, today was quite a day. I had a 1pm appointment with Heartland Hospice to do the admission paperwork and assessment. Ah such high expectations. And, within two hours, before everything was said and done, I fired them.
I still cannot believe what just happened.
Things started out just fine. The chaplain arrived to do the admission paperwork promptly at 1 o’clock, and she seemed like a very nice, down to earth person. We had a good conversation, and I was feeling reassured that I had made the right choice.
And then the nurse arrived.
Initially, she, too, seemed nice enough, but as soon as she came near Mom, the screaming started. I have not heard her scream at that level since last week. Okay, new person, a lot of commotion, not surprising, right?
Well, I finished up with the chaplain and saw her out, then sat down with a woman who is moving her mom into the new house next week. She was still apprehensive about the move, having had her mother in five different places, and asked if we could talk.
Meanwhile, Betty-the-nurse, was still futzing with Mom – and the screaming went on, getting louder and louder.
As I continued my conversation in the front room, Deb came over, apologized for interrupting, and said she needed to talk to me. She proceeded to tell me that the nurse told her they would be putting Mom on Haldol next week; she had already spoken to the doctor about it. She said there was no reason for the girls to have to “deal with this.” Deb immediately asked if they had spoken to me about it – not yet, but they would do that next week. She finished by patting Deb on the back and saying, “I just want you to know there’s light at the end of the tunnel, honey.” I actually heard that last sentence, but had no idea what the conversation was about.
I finished with the lady from the other house, then walked outside and called Tim. Let’s just say, Betty-the-nurse wasn’t there much longer, despite her going a couple of rounds with me, and blatantly lying to me at least three or four times about what had just happened.
After so recently changing my opinion about hospice (for the better), this experience was not what I had bargained for, but as someone said, it’s best that we found this out on the first day before Mom started to develop any type of relationship with these people. I am still so angry that I could spit nails. I asked the question multiple times and was told that the last thing they would do is load her up with drugs… and right off the bat, they’re talking about Haldol.
If I didn’t know it before, I certainly was reassured today that our Eason House family truly is my second set of eyes and ears. Emotions were running high among all of us, and I saw firsthand how much love they have for my mom.
There is a time and place for these types of drugs, but she is not there yet. We had a lovely day yesterday, with more smiles than I’ve seen in two weeks. And when I arrived today, she was up, sitting at the table picking at her lunch. Once hospice was out of there, she immediately calmed down, and she drank a full bottle of Ensure for me in less than fifteen minutes.
Right now, I have no desire to talk about hospice – and won’t anytime soon. I can’t express how radically disappointed I am by this experience. Tim agreed wholeheartedly, so for right now, things will remain just as they have been.
And, we’ll take one day at a time…